No one does it like Nilla from VanillaFood. Nilla and her team run two successful cafés in beautiful Noosa, bringing together good food, health and the environment with an aesthetic like no other.
In your own words, please tell us what you do and how it came to be…
I spent years working hard for other people. The long hours and after work research you do as a head chef is exhausting. I had my own catering company for a few years too.
I decided I needed to open my own cafe, and that’s when VanillaFood came about in 2014. I’m my own boss and love (almost) every minute of it.. except the endless book work 😬
Where are you from, and how did you come to be living life as you know it? Was VanillaFood always on the cards for you or did you have another dream growing up?
I grew up in Denmark and only came to aus as a 24 Year old backpacker. It took years of hard work in the hospitality industry to get to where I am today and now I can’t imagine life without VanillaFood. Funnily I wanted to be a pe teacher growing up and started university before I packed up and headed oversea.
What is your biggest pinch-me career moment?
I don’t really know, meeting Colin Fassnidge At Noosa Food and Wine a few years ago ... haha
What does a day in the life of VanillaFood look like?
Early morning wake up head to the junction cafe prep with the chefs, almond piccolo, book work, drive our little caddy to Belmondos, meet with the managers there, take anything back to the junction, lunch- smoked trout, some more bookwork, phone calls/ emails...
There’s obviously a lot of elements involved in VanillaFood. What do you find the most satisfying?
I love seeing customers enjoy our food. Whether it be watching them in the cafe, seeing posts/stories on social media and when my staff come back to the kitchen with compliments from customers.
What are you passionate about?
Organic food and sharing new creations with our loyal customers
What are your top 3 superpowers?
Flying, teleportation, animal transformation
We’ve all experienced those times in business where you just feel like throwing in the towel. What tools have you learnt to get you through these difficult times?
Take a moment to yourself, go on holiday lol
What advice would you impart on the next generation of women?
Go for it!
What does happiness look like through the eyes of Nilla from VanillaFood?
A happy and healthy family gathered at home with lots of food.
What does your ideal Sunday entail?
Early morning, farmers markets, smoothie, fresh produce and bread for the week, cooking a yummy breakfast- usually eggs, cup of tea and a walk on the beach with sunny, our dog
Where is your favourite place in the world to have a vino? Where are you off to next?
I've been to a lot of places and have had some good wine, but nothing beats a glass or 2 on our balcony. Probably back to Europe next year.
Who, or what are you listening to or reading right now?
At the moment I’m listening to Tal & Acacia but I do love Julia & Angus Stone
Reading the biography of Frida Kahlo
One last thing… share with us a quirky fact about yourself! Something that people might not know about you?
It’s not quirky but something that most people assume is that I’m vegan.. I’m not ! Haha I love anything in moderation including fresh line caught fish, soft cheeses and eggs.