It was not quite fish and chips that Fiona and Tory Trewhitt had in mind when they started their working lives, but establishing Hunky Dory helped them make the sea change to Byron Bay after years of visiting and dreaming of living here.
‘We knew the Hunky Dory Founder who had established stores in Melbourne,’ says Fiona. ‘We approached him to see if we could bring Hunky Dory to Byron Bay as we were looking at opportunities that would allow us to make the move here permanently with our young kids.’
The pair made the move and didn’t change the tried and true Melbourne formula, as they knew customers loved it as it was. ‘We just brought it to a new location and added a little bit of coastal vibe to our fitout.’
Any business can be hard in the first year and this year more so because of the pandemic. ‘It’s been a very challenging time for the industry, and us personally, but we just put our heads down and worked through it. We are very fortunate that fish and chips is a fantastic takeaway product and we are so very grateful that the local community continued to support us.
Fiona says it was a beautiful time of interaction with regular customers. ‘When people came in, they were really up for a chat.’
Fiona says they have gotten to know so many new customers over the past two months, who have now become regulars, and they really felt the embrace of the community. ‘As one of the only restaurants to remain open seven days a week throughout the entire pandemic trading restrictions, and with such affordable food, we experienced this community at a whole new level.
‘We know that for some people, coming to Hunky’s a few times a week was a form of community connection that helped keep them sane during isolation, even though it was only briefly to collect a meal – we love that we were able to create that space for people when all around us it felt like a ghost town. We personally delivered meals to vulnerable people, and those who were in complete self-isolation and then we introduced UberEats so that we could fully satisfy the demand for delivery. Most of our customers choose to come to us in person though, and we love that.’
Hunky Dory are wanting to say a big thank you to the community of customers who have been such a great support to them, so to celebrate their birthday, everyone who places an order on Saturday 13 June will go into the draw to win a year’s worth of free fish and chips, valued at over $1,000.
‘We serve customers from all walks of life, and have some diehard regulars, so we’re excited to see who our lucky winner will be,’ says Fiona. ‘We know many of our customers have been doing it tough in recent times, and some of our customers have been doing it tough for many years. We are excited at the thought of someone in hardship winning our year’s supply of fish and chips’.
Visit Hunky Dory at Shop 3/109 Jonson Street, Byron Bay, or visit: www.hunkydory.com.au.