One of the region’s best loved country roadhouses, Sidmouth General Store recently changed hands with Joseph D’Costa and wife Rose purchasing the business from the Barker Family, who successfully ran the business for around 17 years.
Joseph and Rose, bought the business after working in a similar environment on Tasmania’s East Coast for a number of years, working in beautiful Coles Bay and the increasingly busy tourist hot-spot, St Helens. After much searching and deliberation, the couple and their young family made the decision to call the West Tamar home. ‘The area is absolutely beautiful and offers the best of both worlds,’ said Rose, ‘a country lifestyle but with all the conveniences of city life given it’s close proximity to Launceston.’
Sensitive to unnecessary change just for the sake of it, Joseph and Rose wanted to ensure customers that Sidmouth General Store will continue to trade as business per usual albeit with extended trading hours and a few tweaks here and there.
A good example of that philosophy is the coffee! A new modernised coffee machine will soon be added however the popular ‘truckers’ coffee’ will still be on hand for those early morning workers with no such luxury as time to stop for very long, whose office is usually the road to and from Bell Bay!
Both breakfast and evening menus will be extended, additions include fresh omelettes, cheese and tomatoes toasties, tuna paddy, fish n chips, pizza and a Friday night curry special, phone orders are most welcome or indoor seating is available for those who have a little spare time to stick around and enjoy an old-fashioned country roadhouse.
Fuel will now be provided by Tas Petroleum, which should, according to Joseph, offer ‘more competitive rates’ for customers. New lights have been installed inside the store with more subtle refurbishments on the way with an emphasis on retaining the store’s country charm.
Much loved local staff members Joanne and Dawn who have served at the store for a number of years under the previous owners, will stay on and are joined by super friendly newcomer Ainsley, also from the East Coast, and locals Daisy, Eva, Rebeca and River.
Local suppliers are well represented in the store, with local brands such as Prah Cider Apple Juice prominent and local pastry chef Margaret providing her range of customised cakes for all occasions. Flowers, potatoes, and firewood are all locally sourced and there are opportunities for local farmers and producers or even those with a hobby business to approach the store about stocking their product, ‘they are most welcome to contact us,’ said Joseph.
It was a busy Friday afternoon, when I popped in to write this article and the phone orders were flying in, the kitchen buzzing with activity as that old familiar smell of fish n chips filled the air. Customers were constant, some with time to stay and chat for a while, perhaps enjoy their meal instore, others just in and out to pick-up a meal, grab some fuel or stock up on supplies. Either way, it was plain to see that their custom was valued, the service fantastic and the food cooked with love by people who care, the same as it’s always been at Sidmouth General Store.