If you're a Melbournite you may already have heard the name Morgan Hipworth, or at the very least, Bistro Morgan, the Windsor doughnut shop made famous for its injectable fillings and its equally famous 15-year-old founder. That's right, at just fifteen Morgan Hipworth took a massive leap and decided to set-up his own doughnut shop. How? Why? How? These were all questions were dying to ask the teen baker at our recent preview party held at Bistro Morgan to launch our new Colour for All unisex range for tweens.
Luckily for us, Morgan was more than happy to answer ALL our sticky nose questions, while we munched on a few of his gloriously sticky doughnuts. Seriously good doughnuts, seriously talented guy! Click on to read our interview with this budding entrepreneur...
When did your passion for food begin?
I started cooking when I was 7 years old when I watched TV shows such as Masterchef, and I just thought 'well, if they can do it, I can do it!' I began by cooking packet mix cakes and cookies, then I moved into more intricate desserts. I started an early version of 'Bistro Morgan’ by setting up my family’s formal dining room as a restaurant. I would print out menus and make all my family score my dinner. I would spend most weekends cooking all day to serve up a full 3-course dinner that night.
How did it grow from cooking for family and friends to selling baked goods to cafes?
It first turned into a little business when I started making cakes and desserts for family and friends. Once every school holidays, from about nine-years-old, I'd set up our garage as a ‘Sweets & Treats Day,’ where I would invite all our family and friends and I’d make heaps of cakes for them to purchase and enjoy! The next big ‘break’ came when I went to a local cafe for lunch and got chatting with the owner. She mentioned they were looking for a new cake supplier and asked if I’d be interested in bringing some samples down. Two weeks later I had my first stockist!
When did you take the leap from side hustle to something more?
When I went to our local cafe and eventually started suppling them. All of a sudden I went from making cakes and dinners for my family to the general public. It was a big change which changed my whole life.
Why did you decide to take on your own shop instead of going on, say, Junior MasterChef, for example?
When I was nine-years-old I actually had an audition for Junior Masterchef and managed to make it to the top 300. However, the show was cancelled and didn't go ahead the next season. I think by following your passion and doing something yourself you have the freedom to do whatever you want!
Who doesn’t love a good doughnut?! But in all honesty, I just fell into making doughnuts. When I first started supplying cafes I had never made a doughnut before. They wanted something special for Valentine's Day, so we came up with doing a heart-shaped doughnut. These were pretty basic, just plain jam, caramel, etc. They were so popular I started doing doughnuts every weekend and they just took off. And, the rest, as they say, is history.
How do you manage the running of the shop and your school commitments?
Well… it’s busy, there’s no doubt about it. I try and get as much as possible of my school work done during school hours, so that way when I get home I can focus on the business side of things more.
How did you learn the business side of things?
I was just thrown in the deep end. From the first delivery we were asked to provide an ABN (Australian Business Number) and invoice, so overnight I registered an ABN and business name and downloaded an invoicing client. The other thing that helped is both my parents have their own business, so I grew up all around ‘business talk.’ I am very tech savvy so I used all the tools I had to research what I needed to get started.
Are there any influencers (business or food or otherwise) who you look up to and why?
I really admire any person that has a passion and drive and is willing to give every opportunity a go
Do you get much downtime and, if so, what do you do to switch off?
I don’t get a lot of downtime but when I do, I love nothing more than coming home and cooking dinner. I also love touring Melbourne’s amazing culinary offerings and catching up with friends, travelling overseas is amazing and seeing what other countries have to offer in the way of food and trends.
What advice do you have for someone who wishes to pursue a passion or turn a side gig into something more?
I think my main piece of advice would be to love what you do and really believe in yourself and take every opportunity life gives you!
What do you wish for both personally and professionally in the long-term?
My big dream is to have my own cafes and restaurants as well as continuing to expand Bistro Morgan.
How has social media influenced you and your work?
Social media has had a massive influence on Bistro Morgan. It has allowed me to easily share my creations with the world at just a touch of a button. Our doughnuts are very visually appealing so the likes of Instagram and Facebook are great ways to market our product. In fact, it's our main form of marketing for the business!
What’s your goal for 2018?
My goal for 2018 is to continue to have as much fun as possible in Bistro Morgan and see where it takes us!
Check out more photos from our recent Colour for All launch party held at Bistro Morgan and explore the range, exclusive to Bonds online here.
Plus, until the end of January 2018, you can purchase a limited edition Bonds Colour for All doughnut (pictured) exclusively from Bistro Morgan in Windsor, Melbourne. Yummy days!