Olive at Loch
Olive at Loch was supposed to be a semi-retirement plan. Sandra and Rob Gawn arrived in the sleepy town for a spot of camping in their green Kombi (named Olive) and decided to stay. They bought the cafe in 2014 and decided to replicate the part-shop, part-cafe model Sandra had previously operated in Sandringham, Melbourne.
There’s no set menu, just a cabinet full of comforting home-style food to pair with fresh salad. There are house-made sausage rolls and pies (including a beef number made with the Dark Ale from Loch Brewery and Distillery a few doors up), tarts, frittatas, bagels and jaffles. These are shaped by local produce where possible, and there are a bunch of gluten-free and vegetarian options presented. Then there’s vegan fruit bread, brownies, slices, cakes and huge scones.
Beans come from Coffee Supreme, and there’s Prana Chai, T2 teas, kombucha and smoothies.
The shop section stocks kitchenwares, garden tools, eco-minded bits and bobs, and locally produced edibles such as Karingal Berries preserves and Hill Top Hives honey. There’s also a veggie swap out front, so locals can exchange their lemon bounty for someone else’s excess carrots.