New Ukrainian restaurant Mavka in Waitara hopes to continue a family tradition and also employ more newly arrived refugees.
When you first set foot in Mavka, the North Shore’s newest restaurant offering, the passion for Ukraine is everywhere. From the blue and yellow coffee cups as a tribute to the national flag, to the menu in Russian and English, it is clear this Ukrainian restaurant will resonate deeply with its customers.
Mavka opened last month in Waitara, serving Ukrainian and Eastern European food “the way Grandma makes it”. So it’s no surprise to uncover that it is a family owned and operated business. Only this family has a special story…
Oleg Sutulov and his family fled from Ukraine to Australia in the early 2000’s, seeking a new life. And they found it here on the North Shore.
“It is simply the best area to live in Sydney. We lived here for over 17 years and love it. It is green, has great people, and the lifestyle is amazing,” Oleg says.
“We’ve been open for only a few weeks, but interest from the local community is overwhelming. All weekends we are booked out for dinner, and we are also extremely busy for Saturday and Sunday breakfasts and lunches.”
Mavka’s menu includes traditional Ukranian fare such as dumplings, soups, and pastries.
“I recommend our dumplings which have various fillings including cherry and strawberry. I also suggest Borsch, a classic Ukrainian beetroot soup served with Pampushky (white bread rolls with garlic sauce on top). Also, every week we have different specials which are not on the menu and they sell out every time,” says Oleg.
Breakfast options include Syrnyky, the classic Ukrainian breakfast, French toast from baked in house brioche, and Nalysnyky, pancake wraps with homemade cottage cheese and raisins.
Another surprise hit with Mavka diners is Chebureki, the national dish of Crimean Tatar cuisine.
“The customers are trying everything, especially those who have never experienced our cuisine. Nevertheless, at the moment, cabbage rolls and potato & mushroom dumplings served with fried onion and fried speck are probably at the top of the list.”
There is a mouthwatering sweets selection, including Kyiv cake, Prague cake, and Napoleon cake; all home made using traditional recipes passed down through the generations.
“We do not actually have chefs. Every Ukrainian lady can cook, and if she tells you she cannot, ask her again if she is actually Ukrainian! My wife and her mother are in charge of all the recipes and then we have a few cooks to implement them,” Oleg said proudly.
With the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, Oleg wants to do what he can to help others fleeing their homeland. All staff are refugees who have arrived in Australia since March when the latest conflict began, capturing the world’s attention.
If you’re in the area, Oleg recommends making a booking.
“You cannot taste our food just by looking at our website, so come in and try one of the best and unfortunately one of the least known cuisines in the world!”
6 Waitara Ave, Waitara
If you enjoyed this article, you may also like reading about Olea in Lindfield, another new restaurant with great reviews. Click here for more.