A NEW café with one of the best views in Australia has opened its doors on Cooktown’s waterfront, but is unable to run a dinner service due to staff shortages.
The Wharf Kitchen overlooks Cooktown Fisherman’s Wharf, and opened for breakfast and lunch earlier this month.
However, owner Meg Barrett said she hasn’t been able to source hospitality workers.
“I’m interviewing a couple this afternoon, but a lot of people just don’t turn up to interviews,” the frustrated business owner said.
“I need a couple of kitchen hands, a dishy, waitresses, bar staff and a couple of chefs.”
Despite running the kitchen herself and with her parents waiting tables and washing dishes, Ms Barrett said their first week had been a success.
“We’ve had some great support from the community, absolutely great support,” she said.
“Lots of great constructive feedback to help me change things and make it better.
“In just a week, some people have actually become regulars.”
Ms Barrett and her husband Damian moved from Mackay to Cooktown in November, taking over popular fish and chip shop Gilled and Gutted, which adjoins The Wharf Kitchen.
Ms Barrett has filled the menu with her own favourites including pulled pork burgers, chicken schnitzel and fish tacos, and said she would continue to modify it.
“The menu is things I cook at home for my husband; things I know how to cook,” she said.
“We will keep tweaking it as we learn what is popular and we’ll also have a specials board.”
The family is supporting local wherever they can, buying coffee from Mareeba’s Tichum Creek farm and fruit and vegetables from Q-Cumbers greengrocers and IGA.
The Wharf Kitchen is adjacent to Cooktown’s public wharf and open Wednesday to Sunday from 6am to 3pm.