Broughty Ferry residents are in for a treat as the owner of a popular Dundee restaurant will bring her business to the other side of town.
The Selkie will bring a new food offering to the area, with The Selkie Broughty Ferry due to open in November on Brook Street.
The same cake, coffee and small plates menus will be available in the 30-seater restaurant, although the tapas selection will be different to the Dundee premises on Exchange Street.
Kelly-Anne Fairweather is the woman behind the business and is looking forward to opening her second restaurant and employing an additional 13 staff.
Inspired by her adopted father who is Zimbabwean and many of her Jamaican and Lebanese relatives, Kelly-Anne will bring a variety of different flavours to the area which will highlight her heritage and family’s cultures.
Kelly-Anne also owns Edna Mae Bakehouse which is a few doors down from The Selkie in Dundee.
Counting our blessing
While she describes the new space as a “blessing” it was the landlord of the Broughty Ferry premises that approached her to bring her concept to the other side of town. It was an opportunity she couldn’t refuse.
The building is a licensed café and benefits from on-street parking out front.
“It feels like the right time for us to grow,” she said. “And I guess it’s a case of nothing ventured, nothing gained.”
But Kelly-Anne says she wouldn’t have been able to open a third food and drink business during the current challenging economic period if it wasn’t for her loyal returning customer base.
“No one knows what will happen in hospitality next week,” she says, “I count my blessings every day that we are still busy.”
Kelly-Anne and her team worked continuously throughout the pandemic. She opened her first The Selkie in September 2020 along with her husband, son-in-law, and daughter.
The quartet have had to constantly adapt the business model to the economic environment and have introduced new experiences like Tapas Tuesday and The Selkie Sundays where brunch is served and a DJ plays for the duration.
Kelly-Anne said: “We came into it mid-Covid so we had no prior expectations. We are a bit crazy and we don’t really know any different. It has been our blessing that we didn’t have any expectations.”
What will food at The Selkie Broughty Ferry be like?
Although the launch menu has not been finalised, with dishes from Zimbabwe and Southern Africa playing a key role in the offering, the food will also be inspired and influenced by popular local dishes.
Dishes such as sadza, a type of bread prepared with cornflour usually served with a beef stew and covo (African kale), is one of the many options Kelly-Anne intends to offer.
She said: “I haven’t decided the final menu, but it will be a sort of mela of what we love eating and bringing people in to experience that.”
There are also plans to have a heavy focus on seafood across the menus to further add something different to the local offering.
Once the venue has launched Kelly-Anne will take suggestions and guidance from her customers and adapt and shape the menu to suit them, just like she did at her first restaurant.
The Selkie Broughty Ferry will have the same look and feel of its sister venue with a focus on keeping numbers small to ensure the best service and highest quality of food can be enjoyed at her premises.
She said: “We like small spaces and I like to know who my customers are. We are a cosy place that you go to on a regular basis.
“I love what I do and I think once you up the numbers of customers, you up the stress.”
Kelly-Anne will be responsible for a brigade of around 30 across her two restaurants. She and the other family members will split themselves across both venues, although the finer details are yet to be decided.
Experienced staff from the Dundee venue will be transferred to the new venue to help train new team members.
But it doesn’t stop there for Kelly-Anne.
Passionate about giving back to the community and helping others, the entrepreneur, who grew up in Whitfield, hopes to establish an outreach bus in the future to help those in need.
This bus would travel to local communities that face issues and would provide somewhere for individuals to shower, wash their clothes, have some food and nap on the upper level.
Kelly-Anne already offers meals and support to help those who were struggling and she says this bus would, in time, create a safe place where others can gather to get the help they require.
She said: “I don’t know if I’ll ever get there, but I would love if the businesses had enough income that I could set up that foundation.
“It is my ambition in the back of my head, and it’s like playing chess until I get there.”
You will find The Selkie Broughty Ferry at 335 Brook Street, Broughty Ferry, Dundee DD5 2DS