A POPULAR Indigo Valley haunt has reopened after six years.
The Watchbox began trading on weekends recently, offering a paddock to plate menu and woodfired pizzas.
Co-owners Jemma Toohey and Rick Taylor reopened the cafe last month after taking ownership last spring.
Ms Toohey said the property was listed in The Border Mail and the attraction was instant.
She said they spent eight months working on the place - with family and friends on board - and battled severe flooding at the 11th hour last month.
"Family and staff travelled from Albury to dig trenches and sweep water out of the cafe late at night," she said.
"We have put a lot of heart and soul into the place; it's something we've always wanted to do."
Albury Wodonga Volunteer Resource Bureau chief executive, Ms Toohey said there was a real sense of community in the Indigo Valley.
She said more than 100 people turned up to their opening weekend.
"We love being a space for locals to share a meal, share stories and be with each other," Ms Toohey said.
"That's what it's all about.
"Down the track, we have talked about giving people with disabilities a chance to try hospitality here and to cater for multicultural groups too."
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Alan and Lisa Clark planted grapevines on the property in 1997, coining the term Watchbox after the watchman who kept an eye over cattle grazing in the vicinity in the early 1800s.
Shelley Wait and Tyson Knight ran the Watchbox Cafe and cellar door, which opened in 2002, while the Clarks focused on wine-making.
The Watchbox already makes its own craft beer (pale ale and XPA) and will offer Pfeiffer Wines while it gets its vineyard back into production.
Mr Taylor, who is president of Thurgoona Men's Shed, added a vegetable garden to supply the kitchen.
The Watchbox will run Christmas in July events each Saturday of next month. Bookings via Jemma on 0402 576 202.
The Watchbox opens Friday and Saturday, 11am to 11pm, and Sunday, 11am to 5pm.
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