Bait to Plate

Kev Collins

Well known Restauranter and co-owner of Fish D'vine & The Rum Bar in Airlie Beach. When Kev's not working he's out fishing in the amazing food bowl of the Whitsundays and Great Barrier Reef Marine Park or in his tinnie in the estuaries crabbing! His blog imparts wisdom, tales and info on all things fishing and food.

Some Days are Diamonds

All of us who fish, particularly if we are fishing wide on the reef are students of the weather. Typically we have 2 or 3 weather web site on our favourite’s page and watch like a hawk for that perfect combination of forecast, weather charts and tide charts. When you get a big lows in the bight, a weak high pressure system with no isobars over North Queensland and can combine that with tides a day or 2 after the “neaps” you can be guaranteed calm seas and good fishing. So it was last Tuesday and a chance to run out “wide” so 80 miles off-shore, almost to the edge of the shelf with a couple of boats to ensure safety.

We caught some beautiful Coral trout and Red Emperor, Red Throat emperor, Spanish mackerel and even a few curios like Green Job Fish.

While I get to go with mates for fun, I know our local commercial fisherman will have been taking advantage of the weather as well so with today again calm and me back to work, I expect a phone call tomorrow letting the know “the boats in”. This will be a good week to dine on the best of our local reef fish and coinciding with the busiest time of the year in the restaurant will make sure we have lots and lots of very happy guests.


Love it when a plan comes together. While I was out at the reef with mates enjoying myself, our hard working commercial fisherman and been “on the job” so I Just had a call from my main supplier and yes, the boat’s in. Wonderful catch of Coral trout, Red Emperor and Red Throat along with Spanish Mackerel and as a real bonus 2 Long tail Tuna and 1 big Eye Tuna. The long tail will hit the menu tomorrow night as Sashmi while I will coat the Big Eye in chopped herbs and cracked black pepper before searing to just past rare and slicing over a bed of ratatouille. The next few nights will be very much worth a visit for fish lovers, even if, god forbid, you don’t drink rum.