The reason the cafe did so well was because of the driving energy of the female owner, Cherie. It was a husband and wife team but I certainly felt, as did one of my gourmand friends, that she was the heart and beat of the operation.
That was then.
Today Crave cafe, on my last inspection, was like a ghost town. Cherie had sold the business and was nowhere to be seen. The new operators seemed lackadaisical and this trickled into the offering. Suddenly there was no stock in the display hood, the coffee seemed off, those wonderful sauce bottles disappeared. Before long the throng of SUV's and station wagons no longer stopped, they just kept driving.
I had an animated telephone call from my brother. "You won't believe it, Cherie's back in business! The new place is called The Cook & The Baker, it's on Oxford Street".
A visit to Officeworks this week to stock up on stationary meant that I got to indulge in Cherie's cooking. I am here to tell you that you can't keep a good woman down. It was onwards and upwards for Cherie as I dove straight into a salted caramel slice, a plum tart, a piccolo latte, a chocolate dusted doughnut with caramel jam inside and a flaky chicken and taragon pie. Heaven is when you get great food and good service. Cherie was cheerful, walked me through the new selections and came out to hand me a 'must have' doughnut which I hear is making ripples across Sydney's gourmet magazines.
The secret to Cherie's success is simple. She is not afraid to use fat in her cooking. She understands how to blend flavours, textures and consistencies. And, she knows that if you give customers quality food they will gladly pay for it.
I thank my lucky stars she is back in business. For a while there I was starting to 'crave' her cooking...
|Delivering quality food once again, Cherie from The Cook And The Baker|