Neighbourhood kitchen Alberta’s might challenge your expectations. Or at least the expectations of those hoping that a couple who worked at Rene Redzepi’s three-Michelin-starred Copenhagen restaurant Noma are going to replicate their former workplace’s modus operandi. That’s not Alberta’s.
What Alberta’s is, however, is Kirsty Marchant (she was Noma’s head gardener) and Ben Ing (he was head chef) opening a hospitality venue at a scale that feels human, manageable and sustainable for a couple who value work-life balance and want to support farmers and producers doing the right things.
Which is why they’ve set up shop in Busselton and taken over a former coffee shop that they’ve transformed into a white-washed, cosy space awash with natural light and greenery.
A pair of colourful, abstract paintings from Perth-born artist Ben Barretto light up the space. The open kitchen and hearth crackle with energy. And there are about 50 seats between the coffee counter, dining room and outdoor courtyard.
From the constantly evolving menu, you might order a morning bun served with cheese. Or a bowl of nourishing chicken soup that’s warmed and seasoned – with salt, a few drops of parsley oil and the barest zesting of yuzu – to order.
While the crockery might be pre-loved, the speckled stoneware cups for the tea and Five Senses coffee are new. Picked out in earthy glazes, they’re custom-made by Vaughan Smithson of Leederville pottery studio, Studio P.
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