OUR SAY: Orange is the food, wine and coffee capital of the region

WHETHER you prefer a cappuccino, a flat white, a piccolo latte, an affogato or a strong long black, it seems as though there is no shortage of places to buy them in Orange.

The burgeoning number of cafes on offer might be alarming for some, but considering Orange’s food culture it should not be surprising that coffee has its part in that.

At its simplest, coffee is a psych-up tool before a challenging day at work or a comforting wind-down on the couch at night.

But on a larger scale, it encourages social and business connections, as well as consumer spending - a person leaving the house for a quick coffee with friends might buy that leather bag in the shop window or those lamb chops from the butcher on their way back to the car.

With retail the highest employer in the central west, a small purchase spurring a larger outlay is invaluable. 

Orange has a history in mining and manufacturing, but the prevalence of cafes is a good indicator that it has also moved towards being a lifestyle town.

When mayor John Davis announced the Shiralee Village master plan earlier this year, a development the council has promoted for its lifestyle features, the first vision he described was to imagine enjoying a coffee in the village centre.

The current offering shows the demand from consumers is there and while an overflow of similar businesses will always inspire fears about saturation, diversification will be the key.

It is encouraging to see business owners offering customers different experiences, whether it be focusing on cakes baked on premises, organic offerings, or music on a Saturday afternoon. 

The more varied they can be, the more they can potentially share their regulars.

Orange is famous for its wine and its food offerings are rapidly gaining traction - one only has to wonder how long it will take before coffee is added to that list.

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