FLOUR and water come alive in the hands of internationally renowned pastry chef Boyne Pead. Born and raised in Port Macquarie, Boyne spread his wings and set off around the world, in his early twenties, quickly establishing a lucrative career in the hospitality industry. His handy work has seen him sought after by the likes of Sir Richard Branson, and top restaurants all over Europe, the UK and the USA. But now the 29-year-old has come home, to share his passion and his gift, with his home town.
You've had an incredible journey from your humble beginnings in Port Macquarie to the heights of the high-end cake crafting world. Take us back to where it all started, when did you first fall in love with cooking? My first memories of cooking are from when I was about 8 years old, watching Keith Floyd and Nigella Lawson on TV, which started to create my passion for food. I even used to pretend I was doing my own cooking show with something simple like micro waved eggs and a lonely audience member - just my sister - across the table. But it definitely sparked something inside of me that continued to grow.
Fast forward, and you're prestige as an expert Pastry Chef has taken you fromsome of the most renowned kitchens and dining spaces in all of Europe, theUK and the USA. Eventually leading you to be sought after by the likes of Sir Richard Branson and baking for royalty. How did you get to this point?It's funny, when you say it like that, it actually takes me by surprise a bit to think of all that I have done over the past several years, it has truly been quite a remarkable experience. It's really a simple story though. All I have ever done is what I love to do. I have a passion for cooking and people responded well so I continued to try and learn new things along the way. Before I knew it, I was immersed into Pastry and had truly found my niche.
Was there ever a time when you questioned your decision to pursue this career?There was actually a crucial point I can remember in my life where I had to make a pretty big decision. I was work working at a local ice creamery here in Port (Kiwi Waffles & Cone) and was actually enjoying that more than high school at the time and only ended up completing year 10. At 16 years old, I was feeling a bit lost and overwhelmed. My mum had already paid my first year of vocational college when I stumbled across TAFE and decided to look a bit more into it. I was so excited about the program and the idea of graduating with not only a certificate, but also work experience as an apprenticeship already under my belt at the end of the two years that I talked my mum into signing me up straight away. I spent my first year of the program here in Port and then decided to move to Brisbane and get some experience in one of Australia's big cities, which led me to my next move.
Sir Richard Branson asked for you to decorate his father's cake and later, his daughter's birthday cake. You've worked with another group in London, taking old pubs and struggling businesses and turning them intolucrative enterprises, with old world charm. Among so many achievements, what's been the highlight so far? In the end, I came back and made the cake, which was one of the best decisions I could have made. They sponsored me to stay and work with them in the UK and I was eventually headhunted by one of London's top restaurant groups (ETM) the following year. One of the highlights for me so far has been to see the transformation in others I work with along the way. I am only where I am today because of the amazing support and training I received from others ever since I showed an interest in cooking and pastry. It makes me so happy to see the transformation and development of the various Sous chefs and Commis chefs I have had the pleasure to work with and train throughout my experience so far.
At times, I would manage, the hospitality industry can be a pretty vicious place. How have you managed to keep from burning out?How do you keep the passion, which you so evidently have, alive? As cliché as it may sound, I think it's true what they say - if you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life. If there was ever a point at which I may feel like I would burn out or get tired of something, I simply change and try something new, step outside of the box. Luckily, in cooking there are endless varieties and options to try.
As of next week, you'll be opening up The Point restaurant and cafe with your partner Gabriel Eagleson. Tell us a little bit about your family history and why you decided, now at 29, to leave behind the glamour and the bright lights for Port Macquarie? My grandfather, Daryl Pead, had log trucks and started the timber mills in Wauchope. He along with my dad also helped build and open the El Paso Motor Inn, one of the first motel's in Port Macquarie. My pop also built the first residential home units outside of Sydney right here in Port Macquarie, which were aptly named Pead Court and overlooked the Observatory (on the corner of Lord and William Street), although sadly they are no longer standing. Knowing my father and grandfather's history has definitely inspired me to strive for the things I have in life and I believe there must be some sort of entrepreneurial drive within me, along with the support and advice of my parents who had a couple different business during my childhood and encouraged me to work from the moment I could see over the counter.
You've said you have a bit of a romantic ideal of how you envision The Pointto add to the overall dining experience in Port Macquarie. What do you hope to offer people? It's very simple actually. All I want to offer is good food and coffee at a good price with a fun and friendly atmosphere. I want to provide a happy work environment for my staff and a place that people will enjoy coming to and bring their friends and family along as well. It should feel like a home away from home.
Looking back, did you ever think you would be where you are today? Or have you always known you were capable of greatness? Quite the contrary actually. I think it took me a while to truly believe I could do something like this, though it has always been my dream and desire. As I continued to grow and learn throughout the years, I developed more confidence and started to make plans to one day own my own restaurant, and that day has finally come. For all of us, I don't think there is a day that goes by where we don't doubt ourselves somewhat. Much in the same way that parents worry about their kids I worry about the success and growth of the restaurant Gabriel and I have been creating together. At the end of the day, all any of us can do is try and our best and take it one day at a time.