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Port Douglas is an hour’s drive from Cairns – along one of Australia’s most scenic coastal routes. Rivalling Australia’s Great Ocean Road, this spectacular stretch of road is the only place on earth that is hugged either side by two World Heritage listed jewels.
Above: The high setting of Osprey’s Restaurant puts diners amongst the treetops.
The Great Barrier Reef glimmers brightly on the seaside of the road, while the emerald green World Heritage rainforest dominates the landscape majestically from the landside of the coastal road.
Less than 10 minutes from Port Douglas, is the turnoff for Oak Beach and Thala Beach Lodge. After a short drive along the palm tree framed road to the top of the hill you reach Thala’s main building. Up a winding staircase of the imposing open-air building, you arrive at Osprey’s Restaurant with its world famous views.
Above: Tables at Ospreys Restaurant are perched in the treetops.
Taking in uninterrupted views for 110 kilometres over the Coral Sea, Ospreys is the best place to appreciate this extraordinarily beautiful part of Australia. Framed to the left of the sea, are white sandy beaches that are backed by the rainforests and towering mountains.
Above: The open plan layout of Ospreys Restaurant embraces the tropical surrounds.
Named in Australian Travellers Top 100 Incredible Travel Secrets, the word is out – Ospreys is a stand-alone destination. Welcoming the public, Ospreys restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner – every day of the year.
Above: Rainbow Lorikeets are regular breakfast and lunch guests in the treetops surrounding Osprey’s Restaurant.
High on a hill and atop of Thala’s main building, Osprey’s dining room is set amongst the tropical treetops. Daytime dining – breakfast and lunch, are usually accompanied by sounds and sights of sunbirds, lorikeets and honeyeaters nesting and bathing in the surroundings tree canopies.
Looking out to sea from your table, you might see whales migrating, dolphins frolicking or a cruise ship as she grandly heads out to sea. Ever changing, always fascinating, as the seasons and weather ebb and flow, so does the natural backdrop of Osprey’s and the menu.
Above: Tangy citrus semifreddo served with a lime curd, pineapple and ginger confit, toasted marshmallows and pistachio shortbread crumbs, accompanied by house made dragonfruit sorbet.
Osprey’s talented kitchen team rise to the challenge of matching the food with the calibre of the setting. Executive Chef, Catherine Pacey sources most of the seasonal produce from the abundant local suppliers and Thala’s own kitchen garden and orchard. “As chefs in the Far North region, we have a taste for exploring the full range of produce which Far North Queensland has to offer,” explains Catherine.
“A lot of our food comes from the Atherton Tablelands and directly from the reef on our doorstep”, adds Catherine. “You’ll find mains on the menu such as fresh barramundi and local mud crab, served with any number of seasonal accompaniments.”
Above: Quinoa, broccolini, broad beans, popped corn, pomegranate, grilled sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, toasted walnuts, fresh mint and watermelon tossed with a spiced citrus vinaigrette.
For Osprey’s kitchen staff, there is the pure sense of satisfaction when they harvest seasonal, local produce and present a dish for a client. “I still get a buzz every time Tomo (the fisherman) rings from his trawler to let us know what he has caught and we choose our selection of fresh fish before it goes to the market,” says Catherine.
In order to keep the menu fresh and authentic, Catherine also regularly visits the famous Rusty’s Market in Cairns to source unique local foods to inspire new combinations. The menu changes regularly, but consistently focuses on creative fresh, local and seasonal dishes.
Above: Ospreys Restaurant overlooks the Coral Sea and World Heritage Forest.
The overall philosophy of Thala Beach Lodge is to provide guests with the very best possible experiences of this magical and naturally rich region. Osprey’s is a reflection of this philosophy as it serves world class cuisine based on seasonal local produce.
Osprey’s cuisine is served with that something extra that few restaurants in the world could rival. A side serving of superlative views over the sparkling waters of the Great Barrier Reef and World Heritage Forests.
Media Contact: Michelle Behsman – email@example.com