Finlay’s Kalbarri wins OneMusic Excellence Award at this year’s Restaurant and Catering Awards

Jessica MoroneyGeraldton Guardian
Finlay's Kalbarri
Camera IconFinlay's Kalbarri Credit: Phoebe Pin/Supplied

A restaurant owner who helped recreate a vibrant atmosphere for the Kalbarri community after the devastation of cyclone Seroja has been recognised for the venue’s combination of delicious food and live tunes.

Finlay’s Kalbarri is a casual seafood restaurant and brewery well-known for their “Sunday sessions” where people enjoy a casual bite to eat with live music. The resort town restaurant received national recognition for its excellence in the live music scene, celebrating local talent and championing support for musicians.

It won the OneMusic Excellence Award at the 2022 Restaurant and Catering Awards, celebrating the unique collaboration between dining and live music.

Proud owner and supporter of local musicians, Melissa Finlay, said their “Sunday sesh” was the busiest day of the week, and since reopening in April the event brought entertainment and joy to the people on the ground who volunteered during the clean-up of cyclone Seroja.

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“We postponed all of our live music, but we had all of these volunteers in town that were working so hard so we ended up bringing the music back just to give everyone that atmosphere, that reward where everyone could sit down relax and enjoy,” she said.

Ms Finlay said the cyclone had an impact on the business and the town, and bringing back live music gave the community an opportunity to unwind on a Sunday.

“Enjoying a beer and food with friends and having that live music is amazing, every Sunday the music takes it to another level,” she said.

“Over the years we’ve had many bands come through all of them have been amazing and really surprises you when they come in. Quite a lot of them come through once and then come back again.”

With the success of Finlay’s Sunday session, Ms Finlay said more venues in town offered live music on a regular basis because they could see the benefits.

“We love supporting those local talents, they get paid for the music they produce and that’s something we are dedicated to,” she said.

“The live music in Kalbarri continues to expand and it’s fantastic to see the support going out to bands.”

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