The iconic Cafe Bondi situated in the epicentre of Hall street has seen generations of families brunching and sipping coffee for over 20 years. Owner Kerry Gu sat down with Guru Projects to discuss the new vision and the future of the Cafe.
Kerry brings over 20 years hands on experience in the food and hospitality industry. From operating some of Australia’s most successful franchises such as Coffee Club and Bakers Delight, Kerry has taken on the mission of taking the iconic cafe one step further. Her personal experience with Asian cuisine and food knowledge, along with market research and business development skills has implemented a new dining concept into the heart of Bondi.
So why now?
I’ve been in the fashion business, manufacturing businesses. I’ve been a retailer, a wholesaler and studied business and management. I learnt about Australian customers, business, production, staff management and have skills and experience to take this cafe to the next level.
Café Bondi was always an established local business, but with the current economic situation – i.e. having new competitions around us – we needed a change. It was very necessary and most importantly it was the right time.
I always listen to my customers and try to do the best we can and that is what this industry is all about.
We are currently building café Randwick at the same time so things are going to move very fast from this point on. The amazing thing is we will always have the locals supporting us – we love our customers so much! We are constantly searching for the top baristas and staff. It is crucial for our staff to be passionate about food and coffee because that is part of our culture.
Tell me about the Dinner menu, how did this idea come about?
We are known for our breakfast and lunch. We have three generations of customers – the kids, their siblings, parents and grandparents. Therefore it’s important for us to keep up to trend and know what is happening around us.
The market in this industry changes so rapidly, especially in the eastern suburbs. The old philosophy of Café Bondi is we serve our customers quality home cooked food and they can just relax and enjoy the dining experience. However, with the new competitive change and the economic trends, that doesn’t work anymore.
Every cafe or restaurant is now specialised in some ways and we want to be part of this too. It is not just a spontaneous decision to go out anymore. It’s a decision made with much thought i.e. for a special event or an occasion. People have limited time and money to go out for dinner these days.
Chinese is what we do best, being my background. We want to combine our classic and popular menu with a higher quality/specialty, homemade/handmade, no preservatives or MSG menu. This is a big trend right now – Asian fusion. My father was a food critic, so I grew up with this superior knowledge and standard of Chinese cooking.
How was your experience working with Guru Projects?
Working with Guru Projects was really great! Guru Projects’ team really understood our vision and helped us to implement the design in the most efficient and functional way. Kitchen functionality was paramount as their design brief as well as the ability to change when required. Guru Projects has fantastic work ethic and was always there when needed. The concept was unique as we needed two separate kitchens – Asian and Western – in one space to account for our new fusion menu. Guru really helped with creating the most efficient and effective design. We will definitely be working with Guru Projects again for our Randwick store and would highly recommend them to anyone!
It’s very exciting times ahead for this local gem, and we can’t wait to see what else Kerry has to offer.
Original Source: Connective