Bill has been feeding Gladstone for 40 years
HARD work, long hours and providing the best food and service to the people of Gladstone has been the motto Bill Fawzi has lived by since he opened his first business in the port city in 1980.
The Outlook Cafe proprietor for the past seven years said providing Gladstone with delicious food all started with making Pizzas in South Gladstone.
“I started the Blue Danube at South Gladstone in 1980-81,” he said.
“I made a pizza for the Australians, it had a lot of filling, and I made my own crust and the recipe for that will die with me.
“I had a guy come to the restaurant once a month for a pizza and a couple of beers and I got talking to him and he was the Central Queensland manager for a pizza franchise.
“I said to him why don’t you buy the recipe?
“He said we are in fast food, not good food, Bill.”
Quickly the word spread around the city and people used to line up for Mr Fawzi’s delicious pizzas.
“Across the road there was Blues, Beef and Pizza and the guy wanted to get out of it, so I bought him out,” he said.
“The Blue Danube was in competition with Blues, Beef and Pizza until I bought it in 1984.
“That’s where I made my pasta and did my pizza as well, and still till today people ask me when I am going to make pizza again.
“I always did the best I could and I pride myself on that.”
When Mr Fawzi moved to Australia from Egypt around 1970, he worked hard until he could buy his own business.
“When I came to Australia from Egypt I had a bit of an education but it wasn’t accepted in Australia.
“So I worked for people for 10 years and never got promoted, so that’s what got me into my own business.
“I saved my money until I bought the Blue Danube.”
After working seven days a week for 27 years, Mr Fawzi said he sold Amici’s Pizza and Pasta restaurant to retire.
“I put it on the market as I was ready to retire and a I got a buyer and it sold,” he said.
“My marriage broke down because I had never been at home.
“So I worked a couple of jobs like security and cab driving.
“Then the Outlook Cafe came onto the market so I bought it and I’ve been here seven years.”
A quick glance at Trip Advisor or Facebook shows the glowing praise from locals and visitors about Mr Fawzi’s service, food and dedication to Gladstone.
“The only thing I know is service and serving the people of Gladstone the best I can,” he said.
“I knew I wanted to do the best job I possibly could, its about pride and not the money.
“I am a proud man and I live by ethics and principles.
“Really, I wanted to make a huge difference in the world and I have only made 1 per-cent of the difference I wanted to.
“But I am proud of what I have achieved.”
Today when anyone visits the Outlook Cafe, Mr Fawzi’s dedication and pride is emblazoned above the counter.
“We don’t compete. We set the standard,” it reads.
Mr Fawzi has plans for his daughter to take over the business, which was listed for sale last year.