Lisa Perry is proud to say that her thriving Alice Springs catering business is a bit like the pretty little town in Central Australia itself – a tad different.
There are four arms to the enterprise: Reality Bites Catering, the popular Star of Alice cafe, a fully-catered function centre, and NT Events and Party Hire, which just about covers all your dining-out needs.
Lisa has travelled extensively and likes to bring the tastes and flavours of the world to her menu.
She is renowned for serving high-quality, healthy food – everything from home-made scones to fruit platters and salads, from pastas to gourmet sandwiches, baguettes and wraps.
The company has built up a reputation for delicious finger food, such as stuffed dates, spicy prawns, barramundi and beef.
Reality Bites Catering serves alcoholic drinks, including a good range of craft beers, and non-alcoholic drinks, including Capi organic soft drinks.
All menus can be adapted to meet customers’ needs.
The focus is on local produce and local suppliers, not only because the produce is good but also because it’s a way of supporting Centralian business.
Reality Bites Catering has grown quickly into a busy company since being set up as a one-woman operation in 2005.
It services customers throughout Alice Springs – and well beyond, catering for weddings, birthday parties, kids’ parties, conferences, business functions and other gatherings throughout Central Australia, including across the border into South Australia.
Lisa and her team often go out to cattle stations and have even catered to William Creek, a station 850 kilometres south-east of Alice.
“The logistics are daunting for us – you have to get it right. And we do.”
The heart of Lisa’s business is the Star of Alice cafe, which is on Palm Circuit, five kilometres from the centre of Alice.
It has a lovely garden and is an increasingly popular place for a good meal in a beautiful setting.
“There’s a very peaceful atmosphere,” says Lisa.
The menu changes every three months and has touches of the owner’s love of world food, such as kimchi potato fritters.
Star of Alice serves breakfast and lunch. It’s open from Wednesday to Friday 8am to 3pm and Saturday and Sunday from 8am to 2pm.
The cafe is gathering a legion of devoted fan.
One admirer posts on TripAdvisor: “Yes, it is a star. A lovely, interesting and different venue for eating, drinking, hosting and socialising. Perfect for functions. Lovely inside and outside with a covered in-between bit. Great bar and catering. Somewhere to chill with friends over drinks and food. And it’s within a very short drive of Alice. Full of character and a little bit different.”
Another writes: “We had lunch here recently and it was yum. Hard to decide what to have as it all sounds so good. I got the chicken burger and he got the beef brisket. You could eat the brisket with a spoon it was that tender, and the salad with it was so full of flavour with all the different herb leaves.”
The cafe is converted into the Bromley Room function centre at night and can cater for nearly any event. There’s room for 150 people to sit down inside and 200 outside.
The fourth arm of the company, NT Events and Party Hire, provides everything you need for a party or function, including marquees, PA system, tables, chairs, linen, crockery and glasses – all delivered to you.
Lisa is very happy to be living in Alice Springs.
“I came in 1999 for a year and returned in 2003 for good. I’d fallen under its spell.”
Visit starofalice.com • 08 8953 3900 31 Palm Circuit, Alice Springs