Black Star Pastry is a tiny building with a huge reputation and it hardly needs any introduction. On any given weekend, you can reliably expect to see long lines of Newtowners patiently queuing to get their hands on such delicacies as their raspberry galettes, chocolate eclairs, a range of fantastic quiches or their mind-blowing lamb shank pie. It's so good.
Another must-taste is their strawberry watermelon cake, which is a fantastic combination of summery fruit flavours. The greatest thing about the place is probably the sheer range their menu covers, with plenty of the good old-fashioned classics mixed in with a whole selection of unique (and no less tasty) offerings. In all honesty, though, all of their stuff is delicious and if you don't mind braving the lines, you'll discover it's more than worth waiting for. Whether you get in early on the weekend, or hit it up during the week, it's up to you. Whichever way you choose, do yourself a favour and just get in there.
Open seven days, 7am-5pm. 277 Australia St, Newtown.
I first encountered Brasserie Bread's great range of all things baked and tasty at the King's Cross markets on a Saturday morning. I tried their almond croissant and I was pretty much hooked from there. Although their sweet stuff is amazing, where they truly excell is (perhaps not surprisingly) in the bread department. Whether it's their organic sourdough, their super-healthy quinoa and soya loaf, or even their baguettes, everything on offer is worth getting your hands on.
Although their products are available in dozens of stockists around town, it's worth visting their bakery/café in Banksmeadow. It might be a little out of the way for some people, but it's worth checking out if only for the sheer size of the place. You can help yourself to something from their huge range of products if you're looking to take something home - they also have plenty of samples on offer and super-friendly staff to help you find exactly what you're after. Or, park yourself in their café and take some time out of your day to enjoy some baked goodness. You can see their bread being baked on site through the many windows that give you a sneak peak behind the scenes, and you can even take part in one of their baking classes if you're looking to learn how to bake like the pros. Something for everyone.
Their café is open Mon-Fri, 7am-3pm; Sat & Sun, 8am-2pm. 1737 Botany Rd, Banksmeadow (check their website for other stockists).
Infinity Sourdough is one of those unlikely places that you stumble on from time to time that really surprise you. It's a tiny place hidden away just outside of The Cross, which is perhaps not what you'd consider the go-to place for amazing baked goods. But you'd be surprised. Although sourdough is what's on the signage, don't be fooled into thinking that's all they do - there is also a great range of other treats on offer. They frequently have new featured products, and their sweet range includes everything from flourless chocolate cake to brownies, macarons and even muesli.
One of my more recent discoveries has been the brioche loaf. Having a slice of lightly toasted brioche topped with ricotta and jam is one of the most delicious ways you could possibly start the day at breakfast time. When it's toasted, the outside caramalises into a deliciously sweet crust. Sure, it's a bit of a sugar hit, but it's not like you have to eat the whole loaf at once. Unless you want to.
Their Darlinghurst store is open seven days, often until late. 225 Victoria St, Darlinghurst (check their website for other stockists).
Sonoma have a number of cafés dotted around town, but their little nook in Paddington's quaint Five Ways district is particularly worthy of a visit. It's a lovely place to sit, relax and treat yourself to some seriously tasty baked goodness. Their muffins are easily some of the city's best - nice, crunchy tops and soft, spongy insides that don't crumble when you pull them apart (ok, sure - I'm a bit particular when it comes to muffins). They always have a great selection of flavours on offer, and their mixed berry ones are especially good.
If you're after something a bit more substantial, for lunch you can buy ready-made sandwiches with all manner of delicious fillings. Or if you'd rather take a loaf home, they have a fantastic range of breads, including all different sourdoughs - if I had to recommend just one, it would be their amazing Kalamata olive variety, which is a personal favourite - it has a lovely crunchy crust and inside it is soft and tasty and packed full of olives. It's great for adding some extra flavour to sandwiches, or you can toast it to make a great base for bruchetta. It's delicious. You really do have to try it.
Their Paddington café is open seven days, 7am-4pm. 241A Glenmore Rd, Paddington (check their website for other locations).
They say good things come to those who wait, and it's clearly a philosophy that Bourke Street Bakery's weekend customers subscribe to. Any time before about three o'clock on a weekend, you can't get near the place without hitting a pretty serious line. But it's worth it. Their bread is amazing and surprisingly cheap, given how popular the place is. Their pastries are delicious, with plenty of variety of flavours and styles. Their muffins are packed full of ingredients (whether chocolate or fruit or anything else), not to mention flavour. They are also famous (and with good reason) for their lamb, almond and harrisa sausage rolls. I don't know who came up with this combination, but they're clearly a genius. The flavours all work so well together. The pastry is also amazingly light and adds a lovely texture to the other ingredients.
As I said, it's often difficult to squeeze in on weekends, but there's also another reason to check the place out during the week. If you look on their website, you'll find they offer a whole range of particular breads at certain times. I know I've already mentioned Sonoma's olive loaf, but Bourke Street's rosemary and olive flatbread is equally amazing. It's also quite different, as they use green olives instead of Sonoma's Kalamata types, and the rosemary gives it an extra layer or awesome. The only problem is trying to actually get it home without snacking on it on the way. I swear there's something addictive they put in the stuff. They also do a mean coffee, and it's good because the only way you could possibly improve on their baked offerings is with a quality caffeine hit. If you manage to get hold of a table, it's best to hang on to it like grim death. They're like gold.
Their Surry Hills store is open Mon-Fri 7am-6pm; Sat & Sun 8am-5pm. 633 Bourke St, Surry Hills (check their website for other locations).
Great article! I know I'm biased, but thought I'd say it anyway :)
By Sarah Han - senior reviewer Tuesday, 6th of September @ 11:20 pm
Big tick to all the above, plus Iggies on McPherson Street, Bronte
By Lynmh - reader Thursday, 8th of September @ 01:07 am
I love bread and sweets, so I'm a keen fan of a good bakery, i've got plenty of good options to choose from for my next visit now. Nice article :)
By Nini - senior reviewer Thursday, 8th of September @ 07:34 am
My vote goes to Bottega Del Vino for the finest of foods and the best of service 1/77
Macleay Street Potts Point.
By suem4 - reader Thursday, 8th of September @ 08:25 am
I agree - black star in newtown. I love a good quality croissant and they have lovely ones. Try a sausage roll, they are very good. Little Marionette cafe on trafalgar street in annanadale sell black star ' s yummy goodies plus they have fantastic
coffee and is a very cool little place to go.
By hwill - reader Thursday, 8th of September @ 11:09 am
Bronte Bakery Country Sourdough and Banana Bread , Delicious !!!!
By Anonymous Saturday, 10th of September @ 06:55 am
Wild Cockatoo @ Waterloo is a newbie but a goodie!
By barba26 - reader Tuesday, 13th of September @ 03:56 am
Cavalicious cafe at Gladesville has a beautiful array of sweet treats and breads,pastries and even soup all the cakes,pastries and pies,soups made fresh on the premises.
By lisam5 - reader Wednesday, 14th of September @ 04:22 am
All of these look absolutely delicious, I can't wait to give them a go. Especially those danishes in the first picture, they have my mouth waters. Great article, and great selection of bakeries. This seems like it would have involved some very tasty research.