Perched on a rooftop in Robina, Green Fields Bar + Restaurant is an atmospheric casual fine dining restaurant. Its beautiful décor, including handmade artisan tables and recycled telegraph pole flooring crafted by local artisans, speaks of the surrounding landscape that the restaurant overlooks.
Open since August 2022, Green Fields has already gained several awards, including an award for sustainability from the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics and inclusion as one of Open Table’s Top 10 Diners’ Choice restaurants in 2023.
Given its physical presence and early recognition, it may be surprising to some diners that Green Fields is a training restaurant. In a new approach, Green Fields is a commercially run business merged with an educational facility. It forms part of TAFE Queensland’s Robina Campus which was purposely built as the most sustainable campus in Queensland.
Aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), sustainability is at the central core of its ethos. Power and lighting are sustainable. No plastics are used, and everything is recyclable, including the restaurant’s (glass) bottled water being refilled from the on-tap water filtration system.
Green Fields serves industry quality food at very affordable prices without compromising its ethos. Beer is local, and wine on tap is from Witches Falls in Tamborine Mountain. Produce and products used are sourced from sustainable best practice local suppliers and zero carbon emission farms.
The lunch menu is driven by seasonal local produce. Where possible, food waste is minimised by utilising topical produce from the classroom in the menu. Symbiotic relationships are set up with local produce suppliers, such as Raba Community Garden in Mudgeeraba.
Food scraps are used as feed for the worm farm, with coffee grounds and liquid from the site’s composter used in the Raba Garden. The two-way partnership extends further, with Green Fields buying vegetables, fruit and herbs from the garden, meanwhile using the gardens as a learning place for paddock to plate philosophy.
Dining by invitation, our stunning dinner included an Amuse Bouche of Sweetcorn truffle soup with crispy pancetta, followed by entrées of Koji marinated chicken wings with spicy sauce, Seared kangaroo ‘tartare’ with nam jim dressing served with a cassava cracker, and the most amazing Crispy marinated haloumi with a shaved fennel, lemon and watercress salad.
Mains featured local Bangalow pork belly with a green papaya and toasted peanut salad dressed with tamarind caramel, stunning Pan-fried barramundi with white miso cream and crispy sweet potato on sugarloaf cabbage, accompanied by a side of grilled broccolini with labneh and za’atar.
Desserts of Warm banana and macadamia cake with miso caramel and condensed milk ice cream, and Panna cotta with winter fruit rounded off our meal.
Overseen by Restaurant Manager and Teacher Jo Gaddes and Head Chef Django Russell, Green Fields is the final progression for Certificate IV and Diploma of Hospitality students whose learning takes place in training kitchens, demonstration rooms and commercial kitchens. Following graduation, some students are employed in Green Fields and the Robina Events Centre, housed in the same building, which caters for up to 300 people.
“We provide a casual dining restaurant with great service,” Jo Gaddes tells us. “At the same time, we are developing industry leaders to show the way into a sustainably responsible future,” she says. “By dining here, you will not only be supporting emerging chefs and restaurant staff, but also the future of the hospitality industry.”
It is heartening for us to see the re-emergence of TAFE as both a leader and community builder in industry education. With state-of-the-art facilities in the restaurant and adjoining facilities and top staff leading the facility, we have high hopes not only for the level of expertise in much-needed emerging hospitality staff but also for its future direction.
Green Fields Bar + Restaurant, 94 Laver Drive, Robina Ph: 0755597511
NOTE: In addition to the main restaurant menu, Green Fields also offers a bar snack menu from 4pm to 6pm Wednesday to Saturday.
Green Fields Bar + Restaurant has a special on Wednesday lunch and dinner for 15% off the total bill for our guests over 50 years of age.
Book via Open Table.
Good Food Gold Coast dined as guests of TAFE Queensland.