Tell us about your business!
Café Gusto began in 1999. Our two cafes bookend Cork city centre serving people who share our passion for coffee, wine & Mediterranean style.
Liberty Grill originated in 2006 & serves brunch, lunch & dinner using locally sourced ingredients with New England influences.
Please tell us what being a business owner / co-owner means to you and why you became an entrepreneur in the first place?
I always wanted to work for myself. It is hard work & relentless but very rewarding when going well, especially when its something you are passionate about. Cork was screaming out for good coffee when I returned to Cork.
What were you doing before you started your business?
When I returned to Cork in 1998 after 8 years working in London, Australia & New Zealand, I began managing the Exchange Wine Bar on Georges Quay. I did want to get out of the night trade & during this time the original O’ Briens Ice cream parlour on Washington Street went up for sale. I went into business with Denis O’ Mullane & Café Gusto was born.
What would you say is your greatest professional accomplishment to date?
Managing to stay in business during the recession.
What’s the best advice you have received in business that you wish to pass on to our readers?
Choose your business partner with care. Watch your cash flow.
Which advice would you give to women who would like to start their own business?
Do a honest business plan originally & speak to other business owners, set & keep future goals. If you would like to start a family, systemise your business from the outset to operate without you.
If you could start your business all over again, what would you do differently?
I would have taken my own advise above!
Where do you shop?
TK Maxx is around the corner.
What do you wish you had more of in your life?
What do you wish you had less of?
What’s your favourite ‘me time’ activity?
Growing produce to eat / pottering around outside.
You have a night off and unlimited funds: what do you do?
London, amazing hotel & fabulous restaurant – with excellent service.
What are your top 3 favourite places in Cork?
UCC grounds, Fitzgerald’s park & West Cork
What’s your favourite bar and restaurant in Cork?
Aroi & Café Paradiso. The Roundy bar for a drink.
Which two women in business would you like to see on the blog?
Shiela Fitzpatrick of ABC Bread company
Beth Haughton of The Club Brasserie