Cafe finalist a sweet treat
Generations of tried and true simple recipes is what makes Sweet Painted Lady a family business success.
The Waharoa cafe has been named a finalist in the NZ Cafe of the Year for the Classic Kiwi category, for the second consecutive year.
The business has been open for five years and is managed by Pat Jacques, for for her son Neville. Pat’s granddaughter Patrice Adamson works as one of the duty managers.
Pat’s daughters Ann Reichardt and Denise Adamson also take an active part in the running of the cafe. In fact, throughout the years, all seven of Pat’s granddaughters have worked in the cafe at one point.
Neville’s daughter Nadine is also the artist behind the iconic Sweet Painted Lady mural and interior artwork.
‘‘Having my granddaughters working here is a driving power for me,’’ Pat says.
‘‘It’s great for the girls when they go away or overseas, they come back and always have a job.
‘‘However, it became obvious with the long hours involved, we were running out of family to call on so started recruiting the first of our very competent ladies.
‘‘Now it’s family and hard working staff keeping the cafe looking great and making sure every customer has a positive experience.‘‘
All the granddaughters have each received a book of recipes passed down through the generations.
And it’s these generational sweet and savoury treats that travellers and regular customers get to enjoy when they stop at the Sweet Painted Lady.
‘‘We have a ginger crunch here that flies out the door, but it’s just a simple recipe.
‘‘We just make it the way it has always been done, just like my mother made,’’ says Pat.
‘‘If people get a good deal, a friendly face, good service and if they get their needs met and go away happy, they will definitely tell people about it.
‘‘We have a lot of travellers who say they needed to stop here as they knew we were finalists in Cafe of the Year last year.
‘‘The Classic Kiwi category is really us.
‘‘We set the cafe out the way we would like a cafe to look, baking cakes and slices that we have always done. It’s simple, everyday food.’’