The Corner Store in Bellingen opens Friday July 27. Our newest eatery will be offering “delicious food, fresh fruit and veges, underpinned by a focus on education, community and sustainability,” says new owner Steve Klipin. We wouldn’t expect less.
Steve has been the Business Manager of Chrysalis School for the past 14 years and partner Lisa Siegel is currently doing a doctorate in environmental education and is instrumental to the ongoing survival/success of most of the environmental and ecological initiatives happening in our town.
The stunning premises sitting on our most recognisable corner, constructed in 1926 by George Moore as a bank, has been undergoing a facelift for the grand opening. Rod caught up with Steve before the doors officially open.
So Steve, tell us what we can expect from The Corner Store.
Fresh fruit and veges and an array of healthy food made on the premise by local chefs Emma Lynch, who trained with Neil Perry and my son Lior, who recently qualified as a chef. The deli will be stocked with our own delights.
Bellingen has a lot of eateries- what will be The Corner Store’s point of difference?
Lisa and I have a strong commitment to Bellingen, to the land and to supporting a vibrant sustainable community. Food and education are significant contributors to vibrant community. The Corner Store will give us a different slant.
So education will be an integral part of what you’re doing? Explain how this will work.
Firstly, we are planning cooking classes. But we would also like to bring together the local farmers and consumers. Having grown vegies overseas, I know that farmers do incredibly important stuff. We want to give our local farmers a chance to talk about what they do.
So most of the produce will be sourced locally?
Wherever possible, yes.
Can we eat in or is it take-away?
You are welcome to do either and both, we offer a place to come and be. There won’t be table service, but there will be big communal tables where everyone can enjoy the offerings.
Will The Corner Store be opening for night trade?
Initially we will concentrate on daytime trading. However we will open for special occasions of an evening.
How many locals will you be employing?
Upwards of 20 new positions have been filled.
What will you miss the most about Chrysalis School?
The sounds of music throughout the campus.
Your best memory of childhood was?
Getting a kitten for my birthday.
Your best sporting moment was?
Beating Rod Keers in one tennis rally (out of 50).
I remember that point. All I’m going to say is- are you sure my second serve was out- looked like an ace to me?
What are you reading right now?
“The road to character”
What are you listening to right now?
Fred Smith- “Great”
What really annoys you?
A lack of gratitude, ………………. an affliction that can catch us offguard at any moment. A recent visit to Varanasi, India helps me with this.
The best lesson your parents taught you?
Count your blessings.
What project are you currently working on?
Apart from The Corner Store, I’m working on improving the gate for the chook pen.
How do you relax?
It’s all about water: Swimming @ beach, pool, river. Diving – coral , fish and wrecks.
Favourite restaurant in the Shire?
So many terrific choices ………………………..
The previous career you wish you could forget?
Market research in North Sydney.
Favourite holiday destination & why?
Some where that I have not yet been – to discover new things about other places, people and myself.
In the Movie Klipingate, who would play you?
What does this question mean, is it like a quiz question where the answer is determined by some Duckworth Lewis method? If so : Blofeld’s cat.