BTW it’s a cafe – not a compound chemist.
People walk in and around this Hamilton Cafe like you casually walk around your own home.
Most give a smile and nod to Ben, the owner.
“Hi Ben – a few packages today,” calls the Postie.
“Morning Ben,” says a local, stopping by for her porridge.
“Hey Ben!” Call 2 small children and their baby-wearing mum as they come in to collect the weekly compost bin from the kitchen.
Originally from Perth, Ben came to Newcastle with his partner Kate many years ago,and have since become much loved locals.
Ben and Kate raise five children in the family friendly community of Hamilton.
Ben founded the ever-growing Hamilton Running Dads group which has competed in many local events and serves to be a community for like minded local fathers.
Their lucky kids, along with Ben and Kate, are up early every Sunday morning – crates in hand – to pick the weekly stock from the Newcastle Farmers Markets.
“I think it’s really important to support the locals and to know where our produce comes from.”
Loves local? Yep. Locally loved? Definitely.
Working his way through a tourism degree at a local establishment, it was in hospitality that Ben found the opportunity to reach people, create things and design a life that was authentic to him.
Being a father of a busy family, he is passionate about the importance of healthy, affordable meals.
But being Ben, the cafe has a twist – which is where the “Apothecary” comes in.
Originally, local apothecaries’ concoctions of herbal remedies were sought for medicinal help, a precursor to the modern science of pharmacology.
But with the power of food and nourishment, Ben is taking the name “Apothecary” back -right here in Newcastle.
Ben’s kitchen creates magic food.
Food that is alive.
“Lactococcus lactose and Leuconostoc mesenteroides cultures are the centre of our kitchen,” he tells us.
A journey through this establishment takes you from drinks that taste like life in a glass, to food in bowls that feel like a hug from Nanna.
Bubbling Kombucha made from a huge gut loving 4 year old scoby, is flavoured with lemon myrtle this week but the next batch will be whatever seasonal produce Ben has invested in.
The homemade ginger beer, that bursts with sweet earthy comforts, comes from a ginger ferment made right in the shop.
The yoghurt that adorns the oats for breakfast is cultured from the “waste milk” from the previous days coffee froths.
The compost is collected weekly for a local community garden.
The left over buttermilk from the creme fraiche goes into the next days vegetarian curry.
A symbiotic harmony.
Experiments being tinkered here, boundaries being pushed there.
An Apothecary Adventure.
To find out more about local life in Hamilton and Newcastle, visit Villager Property to start living the life you love.