Shop Local Q and A: Cam St Social

Cam St Social chef and owner Darren Walker with the nourish bowl with poached egg and Cam St hot dog. Picture: Andrew Ritchie www.communitypix.com.au   d493316a
Cam St Social chef and owner Darren Walker with the nourish bowl with poached egg and Cam St hot dog. Picture: Andrew Ritchie www.communitypix.com.au d493316a

CAM St Social husband and wife duo Esther and Darren Walker set up shop along Cambridge Street in April.

Darren is head chef while his wife and business partner Esther works back of house and does social media.

Darren has worked in the food industry for 30 years and has brought his kitchen experience to the heart of Cambridge.

Western Suburbs Weekly spoke to the pair about their new food venture.

What made you want to open business in Wembley?

Darren:

We’ve been looking for space for a while along the coast and this space came up and it was empty. We liked the location because of Cambridge Street and how busy it was. When we walked in we liked the feel of it and we had a picture in our heads what it could potentially look like.

What kind of offering does Cam St Social bring?

Esther:

It’s bringing a little bit of everything – coffee, wine, good food and good service. We are offering breakfast, lunch and dinner.

What makes it unique from other eateries in the area?

Darren:

We offer everything – you can come in have a glass of champagne at 8am. The brunch menu allows for the Cam St hotdog at 7am in the morning or bacon and eggs at 3pm in the afternoon. It’s giving people choice. It bugs me as a chef when we go to a restaurant mid-morning at 11.30am and the kitchen is closed because they’re swapping menus. I don’t think that’s acceptable in this day and age when you can write menus that can follow through all day.

Darren, how has 30 years experience in the food industry assisted you in this new business venture?

I’m French classically trained and I’ve done five star hotels, two and three star Michelin restaurants, yachts and catering companies. I like to think that my style of cooking changes depending on food fashion and what the customer wants. We don’t want to be fine dining, we want food to lift in presentation and for people to enjoy it.

What advice would you give someone starting their own business?

Do your homework. Location is key. Become aware of the price point in the area and what people want, are looking for and going for.

Top three favourite dishes on the menu?

1. Cam St hotdog.

2. Pan-fried red emperor with salt and vinegar potatoes.

3. Pan-seared home-made potato gnocchi .