The all-encompassing marketplace Majestic closed down in September. The three-in-one venue in Petersham opened its doors in July 2015 with a cafe, restaurant, fishmonger, delicatessen, fruiterer, cheesemonger, bakery and florist. It did all these things very well.
Owners Tim and Cheryl Reen believe the year-long delay in obtaining a liquor licence, propounded by council restrictions, cost the retailer its life.
“We kept on coming up against hurdles and we fought and fought but in the end we couldn’t get over them,” says Reen.
“In the eastern suburbs it could have been awesome, but there was no foot traffic during the week in Petersham … it was such a big space and rent was through the roof.”
The venue had a focus on European-style harvesting, cooking and eating, using seasonal and fresh produce. The couple wanted to serve what they describe as “real food”– grilled fish and vegetables and whole legs of lamb with pepper and lemon.
“I thought they were ready for it … but maybe not … if people are lining up for a cronut then maybe that’s a reflection of what the public wants,” she says.
So what’s next for the passionate and hard-working duo?
“We’re going to take a couple of years off with our four young kids and get a bus and drive around Australia. You’ve got to find a bright light in amongst the clouds and, for us, that’s it.”
We wish them all the best.