Shop 1, 100 Burleigh Street, Burleigh Heads Ph: 07 5535 9082
Professional athletes often know a fair bit about food. With lives ruled by the need to consume heaps of calories (around 14,000 per day during training) of the right sort, loaded at the right times, it’s hardly surprising that food becomes an interest, if not an obsession. No surprise either, that many sports stars invest in their own restaurants!
Dylan Rackley has taken a slightly different path. After a career in professional swimming as member of the Australian team for 8 years, and 10 years working in the Hospitality industry in a wide range of positions, he took over the Lakeview Store in Burleigh.
With a reno and name tweak, the Lakeview Café and General Store is fresher and brighter with a far more vibrant attitude! The setting was always great, in a quiet residential area with a verandah overlooking a park and the lake, but Dylan and his wife Kira have rebranded Lakeview as a local gourmet and organic food store. They’ve started small with a range of well-chosen staple organic, local and boutique grocery items from local and quality suppliers: whole-grain and handmade pasta, flours, sauces, organic cheeses (such as Divine Dairy blue), quinoa, coconut milk and water, crackers and crisps, oils and honey, all priced with minimal mark up, together with some luxuries thrown in, such as vegan, sugar free chocolate, fudge, truffles and biscuits.
Food is made to order from a concise but well-selected, regularly changing menu – fresh, seasonal and local. There are also raw vegan cakes as well as other treats, cold pressed juices and smoothies on offer.
Like lunch for breakfast, or breakfast for lunch? Then this is your place, with a Cauli and lentil pattie and a Roast pumpkin salad on the menu.
Fancy a Big Brekkie? Then why not try the Baked Omelette, containing all your big brekkie ingredients (chorizo, mushrooms, tomato, cheese and eggs) baked in a pannikin. It’s accompanied by a slice of bread, not a sourdough as I’d picked, but a whole wheat bread baked in house. It’s delicious!
“Which are your most popular items?” I ask. I’ve already figured out that with well-priced meals, a view across the park and lake with Mt Warning as the backdrop and a dog-friendly policy, it’s an enticing place for young families as well as retirees.
“That changes,” Dylan answers, “because when an item is overly popular I take it off the menu to actively encourage people to step beyond their comfort zone into new territory.”
I’m amazed. No room for complacency here! (The usual cafe strategy is to scrap the three least-selling menu items, replacing them with popular specials.)
“But what we sell most is coffee,” he says. “It’s Double or Nothing from Tyalgum, an organic, ethically sourced and locally roasted single origin Ethiopian coffee that’s strong and smooth. You’ll notice the toffee and chocolate offerings on first taste, a hint of blueberry in the middle and a sweet fudge finish.” (Concentrating on photos and vibes, I missed the blueberry completely, but toffee and chocolate? Yes!)
Dylan’s talking coffee like I talk wine, before our conversation drifts off to the ethics of buying white versus tricolour quinoa, or which liquid is the healthiest to use in my chia pudding. He’s got a solid food knowledge which he’s keen to pass on, trading tips on different combinations, and how to turn grocery items into healthy meals.
Kira is a barista as well as an artist, her intriguing mural a main feature of the spacious shop. There’s also space for other local artists to hang their work, giving the place an organic down-to-earth feel.
Dylan admits that Lakeview is still ‘work in progress’, bringing in new stock to meet demand, brunch now extended to Wednesdays to Sundays with a chef on board, with other light meals such as toasted sandwiches and acai bowls to go. What we hope will remain is the laid back local area feel to this store, where locals stop in to pick up a coffee and paper while walking their dogs, greet each other by name, sit and have breakfast overlooking the lake…
Across in the park a swan and ducks wander into the playground waiting to be fed. There’s a tranquillity here that makes the place hard to leave and easy to come back to. Yes, Lakeview is a modest little establishment, but in my head I’m already planning a weekend brekkie here with the GF/DF family members. The thought of avoiding queues, catering for food preferences and enjoying the friendliness of a transformed local corner store is too great a temptation to pass up! There should be a place like this in every community, we think.
Read more of Marj’s reviews on Good Food Gold Coast http://www.foodgoldcoast.com.au