14 Feb 2017
Melbourne is bursting at the seams with desserts. Cronuts, cruffins, flagels; the list of frankenfoods goes on. But one 16-year old in the suburbs has returned to where it all began, the humble doughnut, and is supercharging it for a discerning public.
“I began cooking when I was seven or eight. I started making three-course meals for my family and it progressed from there. After a couple of years I started taking cake orders for family and friends. One day I walked into a café and got chatting to the owner. She said I should bring the cakes down to sell them, and I thought nothing of it at the time.
“A couple of months later I sent them an email and they asked us to bring some samples down. We brought some down and before we knew it we were in our first café. That was cakes, slices, tarts; all the normal things you see in a café. They then asked if we could make some heart-shaped doughnuts, which was the first time I’d ever made a doughnut.
“We just did plain, lemon curd custard and salted caramel ones each week. Then they wanted something a bit different, so we brainstormed some ideas and came up with the syringe and chocolate-filled ideas. From there we did them each weekend, started hitting up some more cafés and hit the media in August 2015.”
The rest, as they say, is history. Bistro Morgan now has two permanent stores, in Windsor and Chadstone.
“At school, they don’t quite realise I live this double life. I’m at school doing homework and everything else, but at home I’m back working 40-plus hours a week. I’ve tried to select a few easier Year 11 subjects to work around my business, for example I was doing Extension Maths and I’m going back to Further Maths. Not everyone has a business that occupies this much time, so I don’t want to be too stressed out worrying about everything at once, you know?
“I want to finish Year 12, which leaves your options open in terms of uni courses and stuff. I’m not too keen on going to university at the moment. In the near future I don’t see a need for it. Some people who have something on a piece of paper are sometimes ten times worse than someone who just goes in and does it.
“I don’t need someone to lecture me about how to run a business and stuff. I want to go straight into it and have my own restaurants, cafés and stuff. I don’t want to be too big, because I don’t like anything commercial, it’s got to be very artisan and on-trend with your brand.”
Restaurant I really like chilled restaurants. Fonda is just really casual - you can go in for a quick bite or you can stay for a full meal. The food’s really good and full of flavour, and it’s got a good atmosphere.
Cafe Kitty Burns is in a great location next to the Yarra River. It’s a really good fit-out with great service and great food; everything you want in a cafe. We also supply them with doughnuts.
Way to spend a Sunday afternoon Eating at a cafe or restaurant to experience the food culture in Melbourne because it’s different to anywhere in the world.
Place to hang out If I have a spare day, I’ll be looking for new cafes throughout the suburbs.
Shopping strip My favourite shopping area by far is Chapel Street. I live near Chadstone Shopping Centre and it’s just getting bigger and better.
Hidden secret There are lots of cafes that you wouldn’t even know existed, like Rowena Corner Store in Richmond.