We are incredibly excited to announce and introduce everyone to the Smiths Lane Dairy and its operators, Terence and Angus!
The heritage listed dairy sheds up near the Coral Vale Homestead had some minor renovation works done to them back in 2015 and is now well and truly underway to totally repurpose this space into a history inspired eatery, general store and garden.
We caught up with Vista Park locals and the new operators Terence and Angus to find out their plans for this exciting new community facility.
Can you tell us a little about yourselves and your background?
I’ve been working in Hospitality since I was 14. I worked at some high-volume restaurants before purchasing a Grill’d Franchise in Shellharbour back in 2019. We've run that for the past 3 years and last year we also purchased The Throsby; a small wine bar in Wollongong!
What was the attraction to Vista Park and the old heritage listed Dairy Sheds?
We’ve lived in Vista Park for 4 years and love everything about it. The area is spectacular; the views are gorgeous; neighbours are incredible, and the atmosphere is relaxed and charming! We have wanted to open our own boutique cafe for over a decade and when the dairy shed came available, we LEAPED at the opportunity to create a beautiful, elegant and relaxed place for our beloved community to eat, drink and be merry.
What is the vision for the new facility and what will it feature? (eg. rustic charm, heritage inspired design, sun-drenched escarpment views etc)
The Dairy offers a gorgeous, raised deck overlooking the escarpment; perfect for lazy weekend mornings and catching up with friends. We’ve created multiple spaces to sit and eat, or you can put down a picnic rug on the lawn underneath the heritage fig trees with your furry family members. We’ve kept our design a tasteful mix between heritage and modern elegance, ensuring it is clean, simple and comfortable. We have spent months tweaking our design to ensure it's functional, beautiful and fits within our vision in the community of a space to share with friends and loved ones. A key area for us was developing our Discovery garden for young kids to enjoy. It will feature multiple areas for them to explore and interact with; education will be a key touchstone of the Garden and we can’t wait to see kids learning all about Australian flora, fauna, history and gardening! Plus we’ll have a giant veggie garden providing plenty of produce to use on your plate!
What can residents and locals look forward to enjoying (food and beverage-wise) when open?
We’re keeping the local community close at heart, sourcing as much product from the Illawarra, Shoalhaven and Southern Highlands. Our coffee is locally roasted in Wollongong, milk from the South Coast, bread and pastries from local bakers in Port Kembla and Wollongong and our fresh produce is from a local distributor. We will heavily lean on our community to push sustainability in all of our packaging and practises. Every piece of packaging we use will be 100% FOGO friendly and all our scraps and leftovers will be composted. We’ll also be closing an hour one afternoon a week for the staff to do a lap around Vista Park to collect any trash to ensure we’re doing our part to keep our beautiful community clean!
When can we look forward to the opening party?
Pending construction delays due to COVID-19, we’re hoping to open in late January! We can’t wait to see everyone enjoying the beautiful space while enjoying great coffee and even better company.
We look forward to announcing more exciting news and tracking the progress of the Smiths Lane Dairy. Meanwhile, stay up to date with happenings by following us on social media via the links at the top of this page.