Text: Garry Benson
Photos: © Garry Benson 2014
Editor: Tracey Benson
Some days are diamonds, some days are stone.
From Ankara to The Hague to Angourie
Today was definitely a diamond day. The weather was brilliant as I travelled from Coff’s Harbour to visit friends in Grafton. Over a delicious morning tea they mentioned a great Turkish restaurant in nearby Yamba. And so I met talented Turkish born chef and author Sevtap Yüce.
Author of two books on Turkish cuisine (‘Turkish Flavours Cookbook’ and ‘Turkish Meze Cookbook’) Sevtap has woven her own fresh Australian flavours into traditional Turkish dishes. As her website blurb reads Sevtap loves nothing more than ‘eating out of the earth’. Not only does she cook with the products supplied from her own garden, she sources produce from local farmers.
Sevtap moved to Australia from Turkey at the age of 17. After a decade in Sydney, learning English while working in a patisserie in the Inner West plus a stint at Bill Grangers’s cafe, Sevtap moved to Angourie on the New South Wales North Coast and opened her restaurant, Beachwood in Yamba in 1994.
It just so happened that today was the last day that her Yamba restaurant Beachwood Café would be open for 10 days from today (May 21st) so the menu board was quite sparse, but the resulting food was sublime. Now this is a travel blog so I’ll resist the urge to include some recipes but suffice to say the food was to die for.
The kitchen is tiny but what taste treasures appeared… with great charm and personal service, Sevtap was right on the front line, checking with patrons, taking orders and jollying the locals. When I asked her what wines were available she appeared moments later with all the bottles so I could make a choice.
If you’re anywhere within 200kms of Yamba make an effort and enjoy this hidden treasure of culinary charm. And while it seems that Sevtap is having a break, she is actually taking the time to complete her third cookbook. So get on her website to buy the first two!
Beachwood Café is tucked away on a peaceful side street, right in the heart of town at 22 High Street in Yamba.
Phone (02) 6646 9781
Usually open on Tuesday through to Sunday.
Breakfast is served from 7am – 11am,
Lunch menu is available from 11am – 3pm.
Please note: Beachwood is closed on Mondays.
Beachwood is a licensed cafe, a selection of wine and beer is available to compliment the lunch service.