For those enterprising youth among us, the homemade lemonade stand is the go-to idea we use to test the waters of running our own businesses. Then there’s the incredibly high achievers, like life-long foodie and savvy business owner Morgan Hipworth, who, while completing grade 11, is running a successful doughnut business in his own bricks-and-morter store in Melbourne. Yes, really. Bistro Morgan is drawing a crowd with its drool-worthy selection of irresistable doughnuts – a far cry from the homemade lemonade the author of this post tried to pass off for ten cents a pop – and is fast becoming a local favourite. This is a dude who’s proving age is just a number. We had a chat to 16-year-old Morgan Hipworth about his path to doughnut dreamland, and here’s what we discovered …
Firstly, we’re so thoroughly impressed by what you’ve been able to achieve at just 16 years old. Did you always have a vision of opening your own eatery?
Thanks so much! I always did want to have my own restaurants and cafés, ever since I was seven. I used to set up the dining room as a restaurant called “Bistro Morgan” (that’s where the name came from) and cook three-course meals every weekend. Then, once Bistro Morgan (the doughnut business, not the dining room restaurant!) started, I always wanted my own store.
You’re in grade eleven at school. How do you keep up with the demands of running a business, keeping up with media requests and studying? Are you able to time travel?
It’s a juggle! But I get there – I’ve got great support, which is really great. I try to get all my homework done at school, that way I can have pretty much all my time at home to focus on the business.
Do you have spare time these days; and, if so, how do you love to spend it most?
I don’t have a lot of spare time nowadays, but when I do have time I either just want to relax or do a bit of athletics.
What has the reaction from your school mates and teachers been like?
It’s been great! Most teachers are pretty good, although some just want me to focus on school! All my mates have gotten around the idea.
Your parents must be super encouraging; have they given you advice for running Bistro Morgan?
My parents are great! I think the main thing they have done is just supported me along this journey.
Were you born with a whisk in your hand? Or, is cooking a recently developed passion?
I started cooking when I was seven, it came about from watching a few cooking TV shows and then it just went from there!
What’s your best piece of advice for teens like yourself who want to start their own business?
I always just say, go for it! You’ve got nothing to lose and can only have some fun along the way!
What do you love most about what you do?
I love how I have a real impact on people’s lives. Food plays such a massive part of people’s lives and it’s an honour to be a part of that!
What are the biggest challenges for you?
The biggest challenges when I first started would be people doubting me due to my age.
What is the biggest thing you’ve learnt since you opened Bistro Morgan?
The biggest thing I’ve learnt since I opened Bistro Morgan would be that there are ups and there are downs. You need to make the most of the ups while they’re still around.
The doughnuts you make look SO incredible. Where can littlewren readers find them?
You can find them at our store at 190 High St, Windsor, Melbourne.
What’s coming up next for you, Morgan? World domination, perhaps?
Hahahah that would be nice!!! Who knows what’s next – we’ll have to wait and see!
Check out Bistro Morgan’s Instagram (on a full stomach) and salivate over his tempting creations! And, if you’re in Melbourne, pop in to the store for a Golden Gaytime Syringe Doughnut paired with a Cookie Dough milkshake. You know you want to. ..