Season 2 Episode 2: Mei Quong Tart - The entrepreneur who started Sydney's first cafes
Mei Quong Tart was one of the most recognised figures in Sydney during the late 1800s. He was an entrepreneur and philanthropist - and most importantly, he opened Sydney’s very first cafes. Yes, we owe our fantastic cafe culture to a Chinese immigrant who spoke with a Scottish accent.
We know a lot about the life and works of Mei Quong Tart because he was so prominent and well-respected. He had a string of successful businesses - and you can still see some of the facades of his cafes around Sydney today. He also had a social conscience at a time when that wasn’t in vogue - he treated his employees well and hosted suffragette meetings.
His life was tragically cut short in a botched robbery but his legacy lives on in cafes and tea rooms across the city.
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