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Monday 3 October 2016

Iconic Tasmanian cafe opens in a new guise

The Red Velvet Lounge in Cygnet has long been one of Tasmania's iconic and idiosyncratic dining destinations; first as a hippy-style café and later as a showcase for chef Steve Cumper's rural chic food. 

After briefly closing, the RVL is back in business, rusticity restored (including the return of a real red velvet lounge) and with a vegetarian menu. 

Young couple Joe Pickett and Isabel Sykes have reimagined the space as a lounge and performance space (there will be live music every Friday night), as well as taking a risk on an all-vego menu. 

That looks like being a gamble that pays off, as the place has been packed since opening on September 23. 

The couple say they are "trying something new". 

"The cafe is completely vegetarian with menus that reflect the best seasonal produce in the area, including a carefully curated Tasmanian drinks menu.

"Wherever possible we source specialty produce from the Huon Valley and surrounding fertile region."

Choices range from breakfast dishes like sourdough French toast with stewed rhubarb, elderflower cream and toasted hazelnuts to lunch options like a Cygnet mushroom soba bowl with local mushrooms, smoked organic tofu and pickled vegetables. 

Dips like beetroot and mint and lemon hummus are available all day, served with locally made bread from the next-door bakery. And there is a selection of house-made cakes.  

Vegan and gluten-free options are always available. 

The couple says: "The Red Velvet Lounge has for many years been at the heart of Cygnet, as a space where locals meet and mingle. We welcome the community to share with us in the new iteration of this famous café, which has long been an icon of the town." 

The RVL is open 9am-5pm Wednesdays to Sundays, and is open late on Friday nights. The menu will change on a regular basis.



  1. True! You can take the experience of many other local attractions by residing in the best Farmstay near Richmond, Tasmania.

  2. We'll definitely come to eat here when we come to Tassie in January

  3. We'll definitely come to eat here when we come to Tassie in January