For the Maxwells, creating preserves and sweet treats from scratch isn’t a job, it’s a way of life.
For four generations their family has been delighting both children and adults alike with their range of gourmet goodies.
Leon and Karin Maxwell opened The Treat Factory in 1994, but the family’s culinary journey started well before then. Two generations earlier, Karin’s grandfather, Arthur, produced preserves and condiments in Sydney before his son, William, took over the business. When it was time for William to retire he sold the business and headed to Berry, on the South Coast.
While some people long for the chance to relax in retirement, William couldn’t stay still, so when a local boutique gift store asked him to produce small batches of unique, high quality preserves he jumped at the chance.
His customer base quickly grew, so his daughter, Karin and her husband, Leon came on board to help meet demand. Preserve making quickly became a full-time job for the entire family. Before too long Sarah, Karin and Leon’s daughter, joined the business, continuing the line of preserve making to four generations. As with the generations above her, Sarah grew up with the smell of simmering jam and spent her weekends labelling jars and thinking up with flavours.
To take their production line to the next level, they needed somewhere to produce and sell their artisan products. They found the ideal spot inside an old factory that used to be the largest milk-processing facility in the state. The only problem was that it was off the main street. To help create the perfect foodie destination, one that was worth seeking out, Karin and Leon headed to Savour Chocolate School to learn the art of becoming a chocolatier.
Today, locals and visitors flock to The Treat Factory to find an array of artisan products and gourmet delicacies. If you’re after something to serve with freshly baked scones there are plenty of delicious options and old favourites, but it’s hard to go past the fig and ginger jam; the mix of sweet figs and heat from the ginger is a match made in heaven.
For a quick and easy dessert, the range of chocolate pâtés can be transformed into a chocolate fondue or rich sauce in seconds; the perfect accompaniment to fresh fruit, nuts or even marshmallows.
There’s no need to worry about unwanted gifts, with boxes of chocolates from The Treat Factory. You can pick up a bag or two, or create a gift box with a personalised selection of little treats – but if you just can’t decide there’s a range of hampers and boxes that will do the hard work for you.
While you can order all your goodies online it pays to make a visit to the Treat Factory itself. The building still has its original iron-work, tiles and trusses. Five days a week you can also take a peek at the production line and smell the preserves bubbling away in the factory. During the school holidays the kids can also enjoy a tasty, hands-on chocolate-making class.
Whether you’re after something sweet or savoury you’ll always find your perfect indulgence at The Treat Factory.