Caliopi Buck

Caliopi Buck

Born: 

Harvey, WA. 

History: 

I began working at Vat 107 in Margaret River when it was awarded the winner of the WA and Australian Tourism Awards for Tourism Restaurants which gave me the courage to make a big move to Melbourne, where I was lucky enough to work at Reserve, Hellenic Republic, The Courthouse and Boire. I also did four seasons on some boats as well as an 8-month stint in Edinburgh studying pastry. 

Have you always wanted to be a Chef? 

Good question! I actually wanted to be a lawyer when I was a kid. Ironically, I didn’t pursue that because I thought it would require too much hard work – little did I know what cheffing was all about.

How would you define your style? 

It depends on what day it is really, what I feel like eating tends to dictate the menu. I like clean flavours, acidity and pickles. 

What is your feature flavour these days? 

Spices. I have always enjoyed cooking with them, however my last role at Yours or Mine (in Bunbury, WA where I had the opportunity to oversee the team that opened the restaurant), I really came into my own. It was a South American style restaurant with churrasco, so big flavours and lots of spice were the theme of the menu. 
 
Obsessive, compulsive about? 

Changing containers over, as well as making sure I always have my favourite spoon and crank handle on me. 

Your greatest culinary inspirations/influences: 

Rather than any one person, I would say my greatest inspiration would be the dinner parties and table celebrations I got to be a part of when I was young. 

What do you love about this business? 

The personalities I get to work with and the occasions I get to help other people enjoy. Also, the nice wine you get to taste test!

An ingredient you can’t live without?

I’m Greek so that would be vinegar. 

Most ‘eyebrow raising’ menu item? 

Well I wouldn’t say it’s any one menu item. I do like the ‘eyebrow raise’ from people that comes with ‘how can something so simple taste so good?!’

Signature dish: 

It would be impossible for me to pick any one dish, I’ve loved so many at one time or another. 
 
At the moment the cauliflower dish that is on the menu, served with spiced crumbs and a garlic yoghurt dressing is a favourite, not just with me but with the customers and staff.  

Frank and Connie's Kitchen

Frank and Connie's Kitchen

A gorgeous venue tucked in among greenery along the Main Road in Hepburn Springs, find a welcoming place for lunch, light snacks and dinner at Frank and Connie’s Kitchen. A lively country charm abounds from outside in, with whitewashed timbers and wide front windows giving a preview to inside where friendly locals greet each other and sit down for a catch-up among colourful cushions and flower posies in small glass jars. A menu of delectable options evolves with seasonal changes and locally grown produce, inspired by European cuisine and designed to match a list of carefully curated wines. Begin with an appetiser, perhaps seared scallops, sweet potato and beetroot with almond vinaigrette, before devouring plates such as lamb ribs with chimichurri and duck with lentils and red radish salad.

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