New cafe with an Italian twist opens in Lismore
WITH customers pouring out the doors, Lismore’s newest cafe, Ciao Belli, looks promising.
Italian couple Daniela Macheda and Sabrina Scarpulla were “blessed” to close their Nimbin Ciao Belli a week before the fires hit in October.
But their plans to open a bigger and better cafe in Lismore were halted when Ms Scarpulla received “very bad news” from Italy when the pandemic began to peak.
“We were meant to open in March, but things escalated in Italy with coronavirus which was very concerning for us,” she said.
“But when we saw the virus wasn’t spreading like in Italy, we decided to take the risk, and we aren’t somewhere like Sydney.”
She said officially opening the doors on Monday felt amazing and it had been so busy because their new cafe was filling a gap in Lismore Central Shopping Centre.
“We’ve also had a lot of our old Nimbin customers come in too which has been wonderful,” she said.
“I hope to run the business like we did in Nimbin – it was a community space, it wasn’t our cafe it was the customers’ cafe – somewhere they can come in and feel at home.”
The couple renovated the space to open the kitchen, so customers could see the staff and vice versa.
“They can see us cooking from scratch and I can see if everything is okay with them,” she said.
“This is a much bigger space, we are really happy.
“We are Lismore residents too, so we don’t have to commute to work every day which is nice.”
Ciao Belli uses Byron Bay Coffee beans and offers a breakfast and lunch menu that Ms Scarpulla described as English, Australian with an Italian twist.
“Daniela used to run a cafe for 15 years and I worked in hospitality for many years … my nonna is a chef so I learnt how to cook from her,” she said.
“We try and use local organic produce where we can and we can also do dinner to take away if people order on time. People are really loving our authentic Italian Boscaida.”
She said all staff were following the pandemic rules to a tee and the couple looked forward to restrictions being lifted further to be able to take group bookings.
Find Ciao Belli on the ground floor of Lismore Central Shopping Centre.