Three Blue Ducks
143 Macpherson Street, Bronte, NSW
02 9389 0010
When Mark Labrooy, Sam Reid-Boquist and Chris Sorrell opened the very first Three Blue Ducks on Macpherson Street, they were planning to sneak out for a mid-morning surf during quiet times. But since its opening over five years ago, they haven’t had the chance – there have been lines out of the door every day of the week.
A few years earlier, Chris was running a surf hostel in Morocco when his friend Mark came for a visit. Several countries and many travel stories later, they met Sam. The three instantly became great friends and quickly realised they all had a passion for surfing, good food and sustainability. Fast forward a few years, the trio were back on home turf and looking for a new project.
Over a glass of wine, the thought of putting all their passions together in the form of a cafe became a reality. In 2010, Three Blue Ducks Bronte was opened. Originally serving breakfast and In 2010, Three Blue Ducks Bronte was opened. Originally serving breakfast and lunch, it became an instant hit with the locals and it wasn’t long before they were demanding more. The walls to the pizza shop next door were knocked down and Three Blue Ducks opened its wings to dinner service with the addition of two new co-owners, Jeff Bennett and ex-Tetsuya’s chef, Darren Robertson. Mark and Darren run the kitchen together and put their heart and soul into cooking with mindfulness. Ingredients are sourced locally, organic waste is recycled into the community garden compost, and they create renewable energy from their rooftop solar power system. Many of the fruits and vegetables come from the restaurant vegetable garden which is also home to chickens and bees. They do all the can to support local suppliers, even down to the craft beer, which is sourced entirely from New South Wales.
Whether it’s the quality of the chefs, or simply knowing ingredients came from the garden only a few feet away, you can taste the difference in the dishes at Three Blue Ducks. The breakfast and lunch menu, adjusted seasonally, features an impressive variety of plates showcasing just what they can do with homegrown ingredients. The summer fruit salad is refreshing with watermelon, mango jelly, almond milk sorbet and spirulina, while for something savoury, the black sausage with scrambled eggs, cucumber yoghurt and red currant jam is a regular go-to. For lunch, try the fried chicken with hot sauce, or if you have worked up an appetite, the crispy skin barramundi.
The dinner menu is designed for sharing and is divided into smalls, bigs, and sweets. The grilled king prawns are one of the more popular small plates, accompanied by wilted cos, daikon and kaffir lime butter, while the larger lamb shoulder curry is a sure-fire tastebud-tingler, with chickpeas, green beans and cucumber yoghurt.
The decor more than matches the menu in style and substance: walls are covered in vivid graffiti created by Sam’s brother Caleb Reid-Boquist. The tables and chairs spill out on to the street and with the beach only a short walk away, the atmosphere is friendly and relaxed, yet full of energy. The desire for fresh food only continues to grow and with it, so does the Three Blue Ducks concept, spreading to Byron Bay and Rosebery locations. At this rate, while the boys may not be getting out for a surf anytime soon, They are certainly fulfilling their other passion: providing good, honesty, and sustainable food to many happy customers.