26 March 2021

Taralga's Tangled Vine Cafe rises from the ashes

| Hannah Sparks
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The Tangled Vine Cafe in Taralga

The Tangled Vine Cafe in Taralga has been closed since a fire in August 2020. Photo: Hannah Sparks.

The popular Tangled Vine Cafe in the historic Taralga village nestled in the NSW Southern Tablelands, is set to reopen later this year as a bakery after a devastating fire in August 2020.

The blaze started when a deep fryer in the kitchen caught fire and spread to the cafe’s ceiling. The damage meant the business which is well-known for its support of community groups and organisations including the Rural Fire Service during the Black Summer bushfires, was forced to close its doors.

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Mary Ellen Hudson and Hugh Wennerbom, owners of The Argyle Inn opposite the cafe, are behind the plans to reopen the cafe as the ‘InnBakery’ and the Commercial Stores two doors up as the ‘InnStore’.

From the bakery, patrons will be able to buy takeaway coffee with pies, pastries and bread already baked at the hatted restaurant.

Meanwhile, the shop will act as an extension of the inn selling homewares and preserves.

The Argyle Inn in Taralga

The Argyle Inn owners Mary Ellen Hudson and Hugh Wennerbom are taking over the cafe and Commercial Stores. Photo: Hannah Sparks.

“If you’ve been to the Argyle and experienced the food and wine, stayed in one of the rooms and enjoyed the nice linen and toiletries, you’ll be able to take a bit home with you,” Ms Hudson said.

“We’ll have antique crockery, old glassware, pickles, jams… whatever is in season.”

The husband and wife have owned a farm in the area for 14 years and opened The Argyle Inn three years ago.

Their aim was to restore the heritage building, built in 1875, create a world-class kitchen that would offer locally sourced, simple and delicious food and create a destination where everyone feels welcome.

Now they plan to grow their footprint across the road.

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Just as they retained the inn’s original features, the couple intends to do the same inside the old Commercial Stores which was previously used by a local art group to display their work.

Outside, stained glass windows attract the gazer’s eye upwards, while intricate orange tiles welcome people through the door.

The Commercial Stores in Taralga

The Commercial Stores will reopen as the InnStore. Photo: Hannah Sparks.

The couple has given the store a lick of paint but retained the stone walls and vaulted ceiling with exposed beams.

The plan is to open the InnStore on Easter Saturday, 3 April, from 9 am to 3 pm, and on Saturdays and Sundays thereafter.

However, locals and visitors will have to wait a little longer for the bakery to reopen as repairs from the fire are still under way.

Ms Hudson said she and her husband are excited to add to the village’s vibrant business offering which also includes the historic general store, shops selling gifts, homewares, books and vintage wares, a cafe and a pub.

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Michael degruiter7:53 pm 29 Mar 21

The owners of the property take down the TANGLED VINE signage take down the vines and they have no right to use the name in anyway. Using the name to mislead old customers is what you are doing.

Stefanie fitzgerald7:31 am 29 Mar 21

It is not the tangled vine rising from the ashes it it another business.

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