Business owners choose to open cafe locally instead of Sydney

The Kilted Dog Café owners Mark and Karen Johnston.
The Kilted Dog Café owners Mark and Karen Johnston. Annie Perets

THEY met on the internet while living in different countries, but now Karen and Mark Johnston's love for both each other and food has led them to open a Scottish-themed cafe in the heart of Maryborough.

Located on Kent St, newly-opened The Kilted Dog Cafe serves Scottish classics including haggis, black pudding and square lorne sausages.

The pair hope the menu will inspire locals to try something new, but have also incorporated classic feeds like burgers and hot dogs.

"We bought a house here last year and we were looking for jobs, and decided what better way than to open our own business," Mrs Johnston said.

"People coming through are enjoying trying something new and taking a risk.

"We really wanted to add to what Maryborough already has to offer."

For those unfamiliar with Scottish food, dishes incorporate ingredients including sheep's pluck and pig's blood.

There's also vegetarian options, such as tattie scones which are made from potatoes.

Mr Johnston, who represents the Scottish part of the two, moved to Australia from Edinburgh two years ago to be with his wife.

"I love it here, it's my home now," Mr Johnston said.

They initially planned to open the cafe in Sydney but market research led them to the Fraser Coast.

Mr and Mrs Johnston said they were overwhelmed by the support they have already received by the community.

During the PubFest, the local pipe band played tunes while a reveller dressed as Scottish legend William Wallace turned up for the occasion.

Aussie Mrs Johnston has lived in Scotland herself, and loves the cultures.

"Though customers go to him because he has the Scottish accent," she joked.

The Kilted Dog Cafe also sells Scottish merchandise including clothing, jewellery and flags.

It is located at 8/371 Kent St, Maryborough.