By Andrew Starke

They came from all over Western Australia to compete for the title of best steak sandwich but in the end there could be only one winner.

Katanning’s Royal Exchange Hotel has been judged the winner of the 2011 WA’s Best Country Pub Steak Sandwich Competition following a cook off at the Burswood Entertainment Complex.

The Australian Hotels Association (WA), Tourism WA and Lion Nathan hosted the competition, which reached its climax at the AHA Hospitality Expo 2011 earlier this week.

The Royal Exchange Hotel’s steak sandwich was judged the best of five finalists by a panel consisting of former Channel 9 newsreader Dixie Marshall, 882 6PR’s Steve Mills, Lion Nathan’s Tim Islip and The West Australian’s Rob Broadfield.

Katanning is located almost 300km south east of Perth on the Great Southern Highway.

“The steak sandwich is an Australian icon that can define, not only a hotel, but an entire region when locally-grown produce is used to create a culinary masterpiece,” said AHA(WA) CEO Bradley Woods.

“Each year we search each of the State’s tourism regions to find the best steak sandwich available at one of our great country pubs and I would like to congratulate the Royal Exchange Hotel for being adjudged the winner.”

Judging for ‘WA’s Best Country Pub Steak Sandwich’ was based on a number of factors including the tenderness and quality of the steak, presentation, sauces, flavour, value for money and the quality of the sides that accompany the sandwich.

“The steak sandwich is always a highlight of any country pub menu because it pulls together everything that is great about a country pub, from the home style cooking to the locally grown produce,” said Woods.

”Eeach of the entrants was unique in regards to their presentation, ingredients and taste and highlighted the fact that you can go into any country pub in WA and enjoy some fresh, quality fare that has been produced with local ingredients.”

The five finalists each represented a region:

  • Coral Coast: Southerlys Harbour View Bar & Restaurant
  • Experience Perth: Mundaring Hotel
  • Golden Outback: Ravensthorpe Palace Hotel
  • North West: Matso’s Broome Brewery
  • South West: Royal Exchange Hotel, Katanning

The Shout Team

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