FOR Sue and Peter Northover, the first Friday of March marked the end of an era.
First published in the 13 March edition of the Warragul & Baw Baw Citizen.
The pair has run Good Habits Café on Warragul’s Victoria Street for just over five years, having taken over the business in November 2009. They closed the doors for the last time last week, having sold the business to escape working seven days a week and to spend time with grandchildren.
“We came in five years ago and changed the menu because Pete’s a chef, so we revamped the menu, which included a breakfast, lunch and children’s menu, and a snack menu,” Sue told the Warragul & Baw Baw Citizen.
Before taking on the café, Sue had worked as a business manager for primary schools for 26 years and Peter was working as a chef in Moe.
In the years since they have seen a lot of change in the town and the coffee culture across the state grow significantly. Changes in the economy have also been visible.
“In times of financial difficulty, people feel it’s their right to buy personal items and come in and have their food and drink, and that’s what they spend their money on,” Sue said.
“We have lots of regulars still, but yes we have lots of new people come to the town, they go around and try everywhere, and a lot of them come back, and they come back because they like to talk to you.
“We work hard with our staff so they always make people welcome, and I’ve had lots of people saying ‘oh, we’re going to miss you so much, and we love coming here because the staff are so nice and friendly.'”
Helping train Good Habits’ many young staff members over the years has been a big highlight for Sue.
“For us to see that, and to know that we have been a part of that, for me, is just fantastic,” she said.
“Some of them have come in very shy and they’ve left confident and with skills. That’s the bit we really, really love.”
It’s not last drinks for the pair quite yet though. While Sue expands her bookkeeping business and Peter continues to work as a chef they will continue to run the Good Habits coffee van.
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