Umu Kitchen Owners Launch Sister Venue ‘Vaiola’ in Tarragindi

If you’re familiar with Umu Kitchen along Denham Terrace, then get ready for its new sister venue, Vaiola cafe, now open within The Green Tarragindi retirement village.

Read: The Green Tarragindi Operator Leads Charge on 1,100 Retirement Dwellings

Vaiola, meaning “water of life,” infuses energy into its space. Stepping inside, you will be greeted with an explosion of natural light and nature-inspired decor. Pops of playful colour enliven the walls and seating nooks, where visitors can settle in with comforting, home-style ambience. 

Right outside lies a playground where little ones are free to laugh and play within eyeshot of their families relaxing over brunch.

Photo credit: Vaiola Tarragindi/Instagram

The cafe welcomes guests from breakfast through dinner with a menu focused on local, wholesome ingredients. 

Many items come courtesy of Providore Princess, supplying Vaiola with fresh seasonal produce as well as signature dishes like the customer-favourite prawn omelette, hearty sandwiches, soft tortillas and for those with a bigger appetite – the Big Breakfast of slow-roasted pork with all the fixings.

Prawn omelette (Photo credit: Vaiola Tarragindi/Instagram)

Locally roasted coffee fuels the patrons, whilst a small bar offers wine, beer and more for those looking to imbibe.

Beyond the food and drink, Vaiola wants to achieve something greater—a culture of belonging. Sitting adjacent to independent senior living apartments, the cafe receives abundant support from the older residents next door. 

Photo credit: Vaiola Tarragindi/Instagram

Much like its sister venue Umu Kitchen, Vaiola brings to life a vision for togetherness through dining. By emphasising comfort, community and connection under one cosy roof, this Tarragindi cafe delivers well beyond the plate.

Read: Tarragindi’s Good Things Grocer Revives Former Fruit Barn

Vaiola aims to be “a space for everybody to belong” says the owner through their Instagram page. Open from breakfast through dinner, it welcomes people of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy the food and connect with those around them.

Published 14-December-2023

Umu Kitchen in Tarragindi Shifts to Takeaway Indefinitely

Umu Kitchen will be shifting to takeaway service indefinitely, in light of the continued rise of Covid-19 cases and new guidelines affecting their Tarragindi operations.

In a statement shared on their social media pages, the owners of the Polynesian fusion-style cade, Emily and Soane Seiler, said that they will temporarily shift to takeaway service indefinitely, at both their outlets in Tarrigindi and Coorparoo, even as the Queensland Government has allowed restaurants to open for dine-in customers.

“Currently, there is very little support out there for small businesses and regulations do not favour our little café,” the statement read. “Yes, we are allowed to operate as a dine-in venue, but if a customer who dines with us tests positive to COVID, we are required by QLD Health to isolate all of our staff for a minimum of 7 days. This would mean that we would be unable to open our café. 

Photo Credit: UmuKitchen/Facebook

“With growing cases, the risk to our staff and our customers is growing. Our staff depend on their jobs and their income. As a business, we rely on being able to keep our doors open in order to survive. This isn’t a risk we can take any longer.

“We understand that providing take-away only is not ideal, but it means that we can keep our doors open and our staff can continue to gain income.”

Photo Credit: UmuKitchen/Facebook

Patrons of Umu Kitchen sympathised with the owners and said that they will continue to support the cafe for their takeaway orders.

“It must be so hard as a small business to navigate these troubled times. You are making this decision in the best interest of your business and your staff, so it is totally understandable,” one commenter said.

“You guys are well practiced at changing your business model to suit the changing Covid environment. This is definitely the right decision for now – see you tomorrow for some scrambled eggs, takeaway for now,” another customer replied.

“Umu is my favourite cafe. I bring all my friends there for dates and I love the atmosphere of the dine in experience. I’m very sorry to read this but I will continue to support the cafe where I can.”

Umu Kitchen has been a local favourite since it opened in 2018. The Seiler couple serves traditional dishes culled from Soane’s Tongan roots to adapt to today’s modern trends and taste palate.

Follow Umu Kitchen on Instagram for cafe updates. Check out their online order system as well for order pick-ups.

“Always a friendly greeting from the lovely staff, taking a leaf out of wonderful Emily’s book. Indoor and outdoor spaces to sit are great so I can take the pups sometimes. Delicious food – some simple stuff and also some more exciting options so there’s something for everyone. Highly recommend.”

Maddie Lucas

“I have visited a few times now, for breakfast with the family and a couple of times to meet friends for coffee, or just to take my laptop and have breakfast and a couple of great coffees while I work.  Staff are always very welcoming and attentive. Service is fast and the coffee is delicious.  The atmosphere is perfect – the music is at a great volume for hearing but still being able to have a conversation or concentrate on work, and the greenery around the walls is very calming.  Highly recommend this cafe.” 

Ornella Outen