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Award-winning restaurateur to open new country eatery

The chef behind one of Queensland’s most popular tourist restaurants is opening a new venture, with diners expected to drive hours sample what’s on offer.

HER previous cafe had customers driving more than three hours just for a meal, now restaurateur Amanda Hinds is hoping to have the same success launching a new eatery and patisserie.

The chef and owner behind Emeraude in Hampton, north of Toowoomba, which was dramatically forced to close early last year over an unexpected septic system issue, has found a new home for her award-winning culinary creations.

Mrs Hinds will launch new European bistro, Myrtille, and patisserie Butter Cake, at the 105-year-old Nolan’s Block in Crows Nest, two hours’ drive west from Brisbane

Mrs Hinds and husband Larry, along with local avocado growers Sally and Daryl Boardman and Anduramda Homestead owners Sandra and Andrew Jenner have bought the 800sq m-plus site with plans for a dramatic restoration and renovation costing more than $300,000, which will include a homewares store, antique shop, produce shop, garden shop and speakeasy-style bar.

Myrtille, which means blueberry in French, will specialise in heroing produce from around the Crows Nest region, serving up everything from beef tartare with local capers and pickled vegetables to cheese tarts, twice-baked souffles and locally reared guineafowl, quail and goose.

“We’ve got farmers and producers who want to be involved with it and people putting their hands up to grow specialised product, which is really exciting,” she said.

Complementing the traditional a la carte menu will be a global, quality-driven wine list, with a selection of Queensland vino; plus refreshing cocktails made with local ingredients.

The chef’s much-loved breakfasts will also be making a return on weekends with farm fresh eggs, bacon, sausages and more.

“In the restaurant it will be concentrating really heavily on service and making it a real destination and making it a special event if you come there,” she said.

While the patisserie will offer everything from crusty French baguettes to rhubarb and custard tarts and her famous doughnuts.

“For those driving through, you can sit at the patisserie and have a pastry and get some bread and a coffee and it’ll just be very relaxed,” Mrs Hinds said.

Anooska Tucker-Evans

Courier Mail

Lifestyle Food & Wine QLD Taste

HOT NEWS – Emeraude, formerly of Hampton, has a new home in Crows Nest, about two hours’ drive west of Brisbane. It’s the classic 105-year-old Nolan’s Block building on the New England Highway and renovations are involved. Congratulations to Amanda and Larry Hinds on finding a new home and we can’t wait to dine there. Here’s a bit about Emeraude at Hampton to jog your memory. The new venture will be a European style bistro to be known as Myrtille accompanied by a patisserie called My Little Blueberry.  If you’ve eaten any of the delicious pastries that Amanda makes you will be very excited about the patisserie. 

Amanda and Larry have a strong love of local produce which was instrumental in their success at Indulge Cafe in Bundaberg which became Queensland cafe of the year twice!  Find out the secrets of their success in this podcast.

Eat, Drink and Be Kerry

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