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Customer close-up: Dylans Restaurant & Café

JOHN-MCKAIL1Standing proudly in the historic Stirling Terrace precinct, Dylans restaurant is an Albany old faithful – one of those friends you may not see for months, but never disappoint and leave you promising to visit more. With beautiful views over the Princess Royal Harbour, Dylans is a top spot to soak up the scenery and enjoy some hearty local tucker.

Husband and wife Morris and Gwen Blake bought the building nearly 30 years ago, it was derelict and in need of a full revamp. When Kleenheat asked why they took on such a challenge, Gwen responded with “we were young and naïve!” But mission accomplished, their thriving business is now labelled a ‘landmark’ within the community, providing 29 years of adored food, flavoursome coffee and attentive service.

The Dylan burger is a definite favourite, closely followed by the steaks and lasagne. Gwen says it is too hard to name a signature dish, with their list of favourites multiplying over the years. This has resulted in a menu that has barely changed since its creation: “It’s hard to take anything off the menu as it’s always popular with someone.” The Blakes have a truly winning formula. And it’s not just their customers who have hung around, their Head Chef Carol Donnelly aka ‘Super woman’ has worked at Dylans for 20 years!DYLANS-BRUSHETTA1

As far as menus go, even the finickiest of diners would struggle not to see something they’re fond of.  Breakfast has all the favourites – from ‘Dylans big breakfast’ to eggs hollandaise. There’s an extensive burger and sandwich selection that would put many burger joints to shame. Then there’s the mains. From the classic parmy to a Tuscan spinach pie, you’ll need some extra reading-time to get through this menu. The dessert options feature all the timeless choices that never fail to evoke past memories. The banana DYLANS-BURGER1split that your gran would give you as a Sunday afternoon treat, or the pavlova that would be the cause of many family arguments – whipped cream on top or not? Did we mention it’s also BYO? Most eateries claim to cater to all, but Dylan’s really does put on a show.

So what’s Dylan’s story? It’s been an interesting journey, with many facelifts and radical transformations. In 1902 it became the Central Coffee Palace before being completely gutted by fire, only the facade and side walls survived. Other former identities include The Pioneer Hairdresser and Tobacconist, The Crystal Cafe, King’s Albany Hostel, Rose Albany Hostel & Tea Rooms and Albany Light Opera Company. From the late 60’s it remained derelict until the Blake’s arrived and Dylans was born.

Do you have an upcoming event to organise? Dylans provides an extensive catering service and can host your party in the newly renovated upstairs area. (Please call Dylan’s on 9841 8720 or email catering@dylans.com.au for more information). Also, keep an eye on Dylans Facebook page for upcoming events. Next month they are hosting another business book chat; the feature book is ‘Future Brain’ by Perth-based Dr Jenny Brockis. These events welcome newcomers.

Apart from their winning menu, are there any other secrets to the success of the business? “We’re always open” says Gwen. And just like the reliable old friend we love and adore, they really are always there for you. There’s no need to dash to the supermarket for that late night treat, Dylan’s homemade cakes will sort you out. Want to see what the fuss is about? Pop along and see for yourself, the folks at Dylans will not fail to impress.

Dylans Restaurant & Café

82-84 Stirling terrace, Albany

T: 08 9841 8720

Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 7am to late and Sundays, 8am to 4pm.

*Gluten-free options

*Kids menu available

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