THERE’S been a lot of talk about what’s happening with the old Parry’s store on Korumburra’s Commercial Street, and finally the rumours can be put to rest.
Tamsin Carvan and Rachel Russo are joining forces to bring a cafe, pantry, cake shop and cheese counter to the space, all open six days a week, with a weekly fresh produce market popping up on Wednesdays.
Passionate supporters and participants of small scale farming, Tamsin and Rachel are determined to “make people reconsider the merits of having another café in Korumburra” by offering something that can’t be found anywhere else on the main street.
“We want to provide a space not just to sit and enjoy coffee but for the community to access fantastic, fresh, farmer-led food in an innovative way that’s good for local producers,” says Tamsin, who’s been offering cooking classes and meals using entirely home-grown produce at ‘Tamsin’s Table’ in Poowong East for the past seven years.
Rachel’s two-year-old business ‘Udder and Hoe’, a collaboration with Mindy Grumley of the Kilcunda General Store, has quickly become renowned as the place to go the very best fresh, local, sustainable produce and pantry staples, and she’s eager to bring the concept to Korumburra.
“Korumburra is surrounded by so much promising sustainable produce.”
The two say the aim is for people to do an entire weekly shop consisting of local produce, with an emphasis on minimal plastic packaging and waste, and on old-fashioned customer service that harks back to the building’s department store heritage.
“Because most famers’ markets are monthly, what people buy there becomes an add-on – it’s not their main shop. We wanted to fill gaps that we’ve identified but also to use the networks we’ve built over the past five to 10 years, and give the farmers another selling day,” says Tamsin.
“And because so much effort has gone into producing the food, we think that should be reflected in the way you take it home,” she says.
“It’s about connecting back to the old ways of doing things and there’s no better place to do that than in this beautiful old building,” Rachel says.
The back of the building will be used to host live music, art shows and other community events, and Tamsin says they’re hoping for “lots of beautiful moments”.
“That’s always been the promise of South Gippsland and we know we can deliver.”
The yet to be named store is set for a May opening, after Rachel opens another Udder and Hoe store in Loch. Tamsin will be leasing a second building on Commercial Street and hopes to open the ‘Tamsin’s Table Supper Club’- a night-time venue, offering meals, wine and live music – by October or November.
Tamsin’s Table at Poowong East will close next year
“All my attention and love will be directed towards Korumburra,” Tamsin says.