When I asked Mel if he would mind me taking some photos of his kitchen shop and writing about it on my blog, he wasn’t a bit surprised. “Oh yes, lots of people have done stories on me” he said. “The university even made a movie about my shop a few years ago – for a competition – don’t know how they did with it …” So, I’m not the first to be taken with Mel Martin’s Kitchen and Gift Shop. This place is amazing.
Mel has been in kitchenware for 48 years, and what he doesn’t know about bone china, pots and pans, asian steamers, european gadgets, and anything else you can think of for the kitchen, probably isn’t worth knowing. His shop is a treasure trove filled with vintage, everyday and state of the art cooking ware. You might have to dig a little, but it’s well worth the effort. If you’re looking for something specific, this is where you’ll find it and what’s more, Mel’ll know exactly where.
For years my mother bought pressure cooker valves from Mel to send down to me in Canberra. When I couldn’t find them anywhere, she said she knew who’d have them. Sure enough … Today in his shop, I remembered I needed a lid seal. Mel described in detail the variations in seals, but I couldn’t even remember the brand of my cooker. I’m going to ring with the details, he said he’ll have it.
Next time you’re in Toowoomba, stop in and visit Mel. His shop is located in Margaret Street but I don’t think you’ll have trouble finding him. When I asked for a business card, he scribbled his name and number on a bit of paper and said “this is all you need – I’m famous”. What a treasure!