‘Feeding the troops’: Iconic restaurant hits major milestone
IT WAS built in 1920 and fed troops during the war, now Noosa’s oldest and most iconic restaurant is celebrating 100 years.
Maisie’s Steak and Seafood on Gympie Tce was made famous when Maisie Massoud cooked for customers during the Great Depression and World War II, at what was then called The Favourite.
All these years later and the little timber house has become a Noosa landmark that has continued to serve meals to diners from near and far.
Carlos Vanselow took over in 2017 from owners of 20 years Ziggy and Julie Fiegl, who named the restaurant after Maisie.
Over the three years Mr Vanselow has renovated, fought off council signage wars and worked to keep the history of Maisie's alive for today’s generation.
“This is such an honour to be here on the 100th birthday,” Mr Vanselow said.
“It’s the oldest (restaurant) around and it deserves to be recognised as an icon for Noosa.
“People stop in front of here to take pictures, it’s a landmark.”
“I think we should honour this an share a little of the story that’s on the menu, how it started and the troops.”
The Massoud Family and Maisie’s daughter Michaeleem Monsour remain landlords of the historic building, which still proudly displays “The Favourite” sign.
“The owner of the building loves the place as well, the same way as we do,” Mr Vanselow said.
“They have kept it here, this is not commercial, this is a landmark.”
Mr Vanselow said recent Noosa Council changes to shop front signage had them locked in a fight to honour Maisie’s history.
“We were very sad when the council wanted us to change the signage,” he said.
“This is not (a) commercial (fight) anymore, this is a landmark, so we have to fight and try to convince them.”
“We went to the library and did research and finally the councillors understood that the (Favourite sign) has been there 30 years.”
“Can you imagine if we had to pull that down?”
“When we did the renovation here we kept the atmosphere, it’s clean and nice but we didn’t do anything modern, it’s nostalgic.”
Maisie's official 100th anniversary was in May, but due to coronavirus lockdowns the restaurant is yet to properly mark the milestone.
“I’m really glad things are getting back to normal so we can celebrate.”
“We will try to do something by the time we can have as many people we can allow in.”
“It’s important for us to tell people it’s 100 years, but we will wait until everyone has access to the restaurant so everyone can enjoy it.”
Mr Vanselow said their seafood platters remain the favourite dish and over recent days he has had calls from people as far as Brisbane wanting to make a reservation.
“I had two calls yesterday from people from Brisbane, and that makes me so happy that people recognise our food.”
”Service, quality food and the way we do it makes people happy.
“To see those smiling faces and that everyone loves what you do, it’s priceless.”
“It’s an honour for me to run the restaurant and to keep the tradition and to keep serving the amazing customers we have here, not just the locals but the tourists too.”