In the beginning South African Gourmet was not something Dion and I expected would grow at the rate it did. With the immigration boom starting in Perth and a large number of South Africans coming over we felt the need to build a sense of community was great. So we embarked on the arduous task never expecting the huge response and continued support that we received.
South Africans embraced the concept and their support has been the force behind our success. Our family, which consists of son Ray-Charles, his wife Cherie and youngest son Bruce, have been part of the business, helping throughout our growth.
It has been wonderful to see children remembering their favourite products as they walk around the shop and adults who come in and are excited to find that secret ingredient. Many friendships have been started and rekindled by people meeting in the shop.
During busy periods we delight in watching the camaraderie that exists amongst South Africans downunder. The laughter and banter is contagious with the latest jokes and sports updates being shared. We have also been blessed to share in many precious family moments like pregnancies with cravings for something from home. And with the birth comes teething and all babies enjoy chomping on a stick of biltong from a proud dad. We also enjoy meeting parents and visitors to Australia and it is this sense of community that has made us realise the need for a place South Africans can call their own.
The opening of our new bigger and better South African Gourmet in Canningvale marks a new chapter for us in Australia. Our opening was shared with many of our customers enjoying a piece of cake and J.C LeRoux. Our sign is now a landmark on South Street, Canningvale and it is equally wonderful to see Australians embracing the South African culture.
South Africans are making an impact on the culinary world through their love of cooking and entertaining.
Australians are now visiting our shop looking for that product that they shared with an SA family and have enjoyed. I can’t begin to pronounce boerewors and koeksister in Australian! By embracing our South Africanism we have been able to portray to the world that we are a proud people who have something to bring to the table and it is through our shops that we achieve this sense of pride. As we embark on our journey in our new country we hope we can offer new immigrants the opportunity to enjoy the best of both worlds.