As I stand waiting for my order, Kate is continually fielding waves and honks from the cars that drive by. Several pull in close to her van, parked up on the curb at Fraser Primary School.
What is causing all the hubbub? Good coffee, that’s what.
These Fraser locals are here to grab their first caffeine fix of the day from their mate, Kate.
“I do this in the mornings. I just love it,” Kate grins out from the coffee van’ serving window in the bright autumn sunshine.
“My daughter is a student here at Fraser Primary. In fact, it was my primary school too!”
Kate started the coffee van midway through term three last year because “when parents or grandparents drop their kids off, they like to meet for a cuppa afterwards”.
Fraser has not had a local grocery option for years, let alone a whiff of good coffee. When Kate went on a reconnaissance mission, she found herself thinking, ‘I wonder if I can do something here. Then, the very next day I saw a coffee van for sale. And I felt like this was supposed to happen.”
For Kate, this isn’t a random pie –in- the- sky coffee dream. “Yeah, I am an ex-chef,” she admits. “I have had experience with making coffee and with baking also.”
She was already on hiatus from a public service job, so the timing is wonderful. And Kate just loves Fraser.
“I wanted to do something in Fraser because I grew up here. The Fraser school community is just amazing. When things changed at school due to COVID, one of the mums organized the parents to donate money towards the teachers being able to have coffees. They were wanting to make sure I kept having business.
“That began a trend of parents dropping in to pay it forward for staff refreshments. And on the last day of school, one student shouted all his friends hot chocolates. The generosity I have seen in the community here has been fantastic.”
What can you get at Kate’s Katering?
The coffee is great. My lactose-free strong cappuccino boasts an impressive froth. Serving coffee, tea, chai and hot chocolate, Katie offers some cold drinks and snacks.
Jars of freshly baked biscuits stand in a neat line. Chocolate chip biscuits, sweet and chewy. Large Smartie biscuits speckled with colourful chocolate bits. Dense chewy Anzac biscuits that are delicious. Gluten-free customers will always have an option too.
The mini pots of fresh honey come right from the hives in Kate’s backyard. With studies indicating that local honey helps hayfever sufferers build up an immunity to local allergens, I know I will be buying some.
While the mornings are reserved for her home base of Fraser Primary school, Kate is venturing out to other schools, providing morning tea or after-school snacks and coffees.
Her wide smile and relaxed manner speak of her contentment.
“I am happy. This is what I do. Food is my real love, so I will expand to catering eventually, but I plan to get known for the coffee first.”
Kate is well on her way to achieving that goal. And now that the kids are all back at school, she has moved her van back down to the School’s carpark.
Seek Kate’s Katering out. It is worth the visit.
Kate’s Katering van is located in the lower parking area of Fraser Primary School at 177 Tillyard Dr in Fraser during the following hours: 7.30 to 10:00 am at Fraser Primary School from Monday to Friday.
On Thursdays she is at Kingsford Smith School from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm and on Fridays at Latham Primary School from 10:40 am to 11:45 am.
Follow Kate’s Katering on Facebook or contact her on 0409 388 308. Kate also takes celebration cake orders.