Meet The Store Owner Who Came To The Parade For Two Years And Stayed For Two Decades
Patrick Gladwich was only ever supposed to stay for a couple of years. Back in 1998, he was a sales rep for Pasta Chef when he heard that the owner of The Parade store was thinking of selling up. There were only two Pasta Chef outlets in Adelaide at the time, so he jumped at the opportunity.
That number has since grown to six, but it’s still a South Australian family owned company and fresh pasta and sauces are still delivered to the store daily. “It’s all made right here in Adelaide,” Patrick explains, “so I place an order every evening and the next morning it's here. If you pick something up for lunch, there’s a good chance it was made that morning.”
Not only are the products fresh, they’re made with all natural ingredients. “We use no preservatives, no colour, no artificial favour, no additives, no added sugar,” he says proudly. “The product has been manufactured like that since its inception.”
And because all of Pasta Chef’s pastas and sauces are made with traditional recipes and avoid artificial additives, it’s easy to cater to a range of dietary requirements. “The beauty of that traditional cooking is the recipes are simple and the range of vegetarian foods is incredible,” says Patrick, whose own mother in law is from Calabria. “We’ve had sauces from the beginning that were vegan friendly, plus we do a vegan lasagne and four egg-free vegan pastas. We also have gluten free sauces, minestrone and risotto and we don't need to worry about most allergies - we don’t use nuts in the entire range.”
As well as ready to eat meals, Patrick sells fresh, frozen and dried pasta in the store along with condiments and snacks. And 99% of it comes from Australia. “There’s just one biscuit that’s imported,” he says with a smile. “I introduced it at Christmas and it’s so popular that I’ve had to keep it in the store. But if I can get a better one from somewhere in Australia, I will.”
In addition to take home meals, Patrick has a bank of ovens out the back to heat up meals and the single table is always busy at lunchtime. By now he knows most of his regulars by name, and more than two decades after he landed on The Parade he’s keen to stick around for a while longer.
“I started off thinking I'd be here for two years,” he says with a chuckle. “Instead we've seen our two girls grow up in this shop - one's now married, one's at uni – and I don't want to move. It’s a great spot and in two years time when construction finishes we'll be at the entrance to a fantastic shopping area and accommodation.”