A friendly, warm and inviting atmosphere is what Appret Cafe owners Donna and Paul Gratton want customers to experience.
Located in the hub of Laurimar, Paul and Donna started their dream in December of 2012 to open a local cafe… on the 28th March, 2013 this was real.
Appret gives the two an outlet to share their passion for hospitality, an industry in which they have much experience.
Paul has been a chef for over 25 years and has travelled overseas to work; while Donna, a playwright, teacher, a Life Coach and a keen interest in business, managed a winery at Kangaroo Ground where the two met.
“We got along instantly. From this experience we grew to understand what it takes to work well together and to run a business in an industry that can be fickle at times,” says Donna. “We communicate really well, we laugh a lot, and try not to take things, in times of pressure, too seriously.”
Paul is always keen to try new items the menu. He makes the hollandaise, the mayonnaise and the garlic aioli, as well as the meat patties for the burgers. Their main ingredient in any dish is ‘quality’. Everything is freshly made – even the sandwiches.
Living locally, Donna and Paul knew that opening a cafe in Doreen was ideal. Being locals encourages their belief that it is important to have a ‘personable relationship’ with their customers and to know one’s demographic and understand what is happening around the area.
“We love the community; we have the most amazing customers who feel like family.”
Appret also has a great alcove area with concertina doors that can be opened, suiting large functions or to accommodate large groups. Or they keep the doors closed making it a great area for kids to play safely. “Family life is an important aspect in the community, and this area allows children to be entertained with games and colouring books – giving parents a small respite to enjoy their coffee or meal.”
This understanding comes first hand as Paul and Donna have a 12 year old son whom you might see helping out in the cafe; they also have a 28 year old son who helps out at the cafe by eating as much as he can.
Meals are not overly priced – the top price for a meal is about $25.90 (see menu). Children’s meals are also available – with a great option of sweets, they also cater for gluten free and other dietary requirements.
Paul and Donna took their time to come up with the naming of their cafe. Paul picked up the Larousse Gastronomique cook book and found the word appret. It describes ‘all the culinary processes involved in the preparation of a dish’… so on that note, welcome to Appret where Paul and Donna’s legacy is – "Prepare to eat well!"
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