UNDER New Management

Under new management. New Owner Naomi Frawley is using her wealth of experience to offer you even more value and flavour, while still using locally sourced produce that we prepare and cook on the premises, right here in Ballarat.

Naomi Frawley

Hi, I'm Naomi Frawley, the new owner and Chef at Country Casseroles, here's a little about my experience.

Growing up in East Gippsland, I knew from a young age I wanted to be a Chef. My Mum has the proof with a piece of work I did in early Primary school stating the fact!

At 17, I secured a coveted apprenticeship with Australian Airlines (later QANTAS Flight Catering), successfully becoming one of six apprentices out of 700 applicants that year.

My career took me to Melbourne, where I worked in a kitchen with over 600 employees and 40 chefs, learning from and being mentored by the best, including those who were executive chefs at 5-star hotels worldwide and some who had served at Buckingham Palace.

Subsequently, I worked at Brighton Foodstore before returning to my hometown, Bairnsdale, gaining valuable experience in various venues.

In 2001, my husband — Jayson, who is from Bungaree — and I settled in Ballarat, where I've spent most of my career. I held the position of Head Chef at Piper's On The Parade, The Alexandria on Lydiard, and, most recently, at Mercure Ballarat for nearly 8 years. Additionally, I took on casual positions during my daughter's younger years.

Our family has deep ties to Ballarat, with my husband co-founding the Bungaree Bowling Club and my daughter performing in musical productions.

Family plays a central role in my life, and I find great joy in preparing home-cooked meals. This passion harks back to my childhood spent at my grandparents' farm in Goongerah, where meals were cherished occasions, featuring perfectly roasted dishes, delectable desserts, and always, Ma's signature scones. Just simple food cooked perfectly!

Amidst the challenges of COVID-19, I co-founded Good 4 U Meals, a business delivering fresh, ready-made meals to your doorstep. Drawing on my experience at QANTAS Flight Catering, I developed menus and recipes suitable for packaging and reheating. We also initiated a drive-through food store, which evolved into Carboni’s Next Door.

Good 4 U Meals continues to thrive. Moving away from Mercure after their restructuring, we relocated Good 4 U Meals to Country Casseroles, where I am now the proud owner. I'm excited about creating fresh, home-cooked meals for everyone to savour.

Hope to see you soon.