After working in an entirely different industry for over a decade, Kat Brown (now Collington) decided to shake things up when an opportunity arose to open her own café in the West Yorkshire village Rawdon.
Kat’s background in marketing for an architects company hasn’t gone without its merits; inspiration from food retail clients and experience of good design has ensured Brown’s Greens looks the part. Working with her business partner and husband, Nick on the design and layout for the café, they capitalised on the vast windows, focused on crisp white walls and reclaimed timbre through out creating a scandi inspired interior. Finished off with fresh flowers on each table and a friendly team makes for a modern and welcoming atmosphere. This combined with a love of all things food, home making, friends and a desire to work for herself has meant it wasn’t long until Kat realised her dream.
In just one year, with the support of Morgan and Kirsty, integral members of the team since the café opened, Brown’s Greens has become something of a community hub. With one-off themed menus and quiz nights complementing the daily array of exciting vegetarian dishes and cakes on offer. A menu created by Kat herself, it centres around dishes that are simple, healthy and full of flavour. Breakfast includes everything from eggy bread to avocado with halloumi, and their breakfast bowls piled high with scrambled eggs, roast tomatoes, mushrooms and beans offer a hearty start to the day. For lunch, varieties of mini filo pies, daily curries, soups, stews and salads are the menu’s staples, while there’s the Tasting Delights platter for those customers who just can’t decide, offering a little bit of everything from the delightful array of salads from the deli fridge.
A community effort, the café’s cakes are baked by Crescent Bakery, raw food treats by Happi Food, mouth watering samosas by Kachumber Kitchen and bread is from French bakery Croissant d’Or, just up the road. The same quality control applies to the beverages; coffee is provided by local roasters North Star and their selection of teas are from Birdhouse Tea Company. Add milk from organic farm Acorn Dairy you begin to see the map of veritable suppliers that Kat has carved out for the company.
While the vegetarian aspect of the business was always a key requirement for Kat, she decided not to market it too heavily, in the knowledge it may put some meat-eaters off: “It’s all about bags of flavour, and healthy wholesome options that offer an alternative to your standard sandwich and jacket potato fare. While we also offer vegan and gluten-free options, a good majority of our customers don’t actually have any specific dietary requirements, and simply enjoy the fact that we have healthier options and alternative options to traditional café fare. It’s all very accessible, there are creative curries, sexy salads and exciting dishes full of flavor, as well as hearty classics like cheese and beans on toast.”
If people come for the food, they return time and time again for the service. A space to relax, the tables are purposefully not too cramped together, while regulars are greeted with their favourite drinks and dishes, and families with young children are looked after with books, toys and games. If early customer feedback is anything to go by, it looks like Brown’s Greens will be a firm favourite on Rawdon’s high street for many years to come.