I've been blessed in my life with friends (and Mick) who eat a lot. And by a lot, I mean they can easily chow down their worth at a KBBQ/buffet and still have room for dessert. On a random Saturday in May 2020, after the long months of isolation and quarantine, we reunited for a foodie trip. We were so serious about it, we even packed our own utensils and takeaway box LOL Originally we had 12 stops planned but classic us, we woke up late and started the day at noon 😅.
PSA. This is a very long post. We ate a LOT of food that day hehehe....
Our first stop was L.A. Donuts in Beverly Hills. This little bakery is located off the King Georges road and is run by the cutest middle Eastern woman - check out her Instagram @l.adonuts! This is mainly a takeaway store and the best part is they cater halal. We got knafeh, the homer and passionfruit glaze.
Our favourite one out of the three was the knafeh. If you did not know, knafeh is a traditional middle Eastern pastry, soaked in a sugar-based syrup and layered with cheese and nuts. We loved the rose water in this donut. It was light and elevated the flavours. The pistachio and jam in the filling was delicious and added a crunchy texture. Highly recommend this fusion!
Our second choice was the homer. It looked and tasted exactly as you would imagine - mouthwatering! The donut was super soft and airy. The strawberry was sweet and artificial but not over the top. The sprinkles were a fun decoration.
Our last favourite was the passionfruit glaze. It was still a good donut but compared to the others, it was not outstanding. The passionfruit flavour was not as strong as we would like it and we tasted a lot more dough in the bite. If you love the flavour and want a subtle donut, this is the one to get.
Our second stop was at Top Impressions in Mascot. This is a hip bakery in the corner of the new shopping district. At the time of our visit, social distancing rules were in place so there were no seating options. We found parking was a bitch. Our three flavours were taro, matcha and Ferrero Roche.
Our favourite was a mix between the Ferrero Roche and the taro. But this is my blog so I vote for chocolate 😊 They used a dark chocolate for the filling and it tasted about 70% cocoa. There was a subtle bitter taste that dark choc lovers would love. The nuts added a nice crunch. The pastry itself was moderate and flakey. We loved this croissant for its filling more than its pastry.
Mick and Theresa voted for the taro croissant because they loved the filling. It was very light and subtle, with a smooth texture. Again, the pastry itself was ok. There was nothing outstanding about it but the taro filling made up for it. If you want another taro croissant, give textbook pattisserie a chance.
The matcha croissant was alright. The matcha taste was not too strong or bitter, and reminded us of a Chinese matcha style than a Japanese matcha. The filling itself was very loose and kept dripping everywhere, even on my shoes TT_TT
Marrickville Pork Roll
Our next stop was at a hole in the wall, literally. Marrickville Pork Roll have been voted one of the best places to get a banh mi in Sydney, other than Cabramatta. Banh mi is a Vietnamese-French-influenced baguette with three different types of pork, veggies and sauce. In comparison to Vietnam, this banh mi comes close to the true thing and is high on our radar.
Successful transfer of our pork rolls 😂 The banh mi (pork roll) was made fresh, as expected. We waited 2 minutes for our rolls although normally there would be a long queue with a 30 minute wait time. For the banh mi, the butter was very creamy and the pâté tasted like a mix of fresh pork liver and canned pork. The added bi (shredded pork) was cold and refreshing. The bread had a warm crunch and was very soft to bite into. The pork was flavourful and filled to the brim. There was a good balance in this banh mi and we could see why it's so popular.
Alex and Roll
While we were driving around looking for a car spot in Marrickville, we saw a long queue to this bread shop. As it was our foodie day, we decided to line up for a banh mi too. It turned out the long queue time was due to poor service, as they only had one person making the banh mi. We waited an hour and by the time we reached the front, they had sold out on their popular items such as the crispy skin pork roll and the xoi (a type of rice eaten as a snack).
The chicken roll was quite good! The chicken was creamy and had a nice garlic relish. They used a flat bread (not like the typical bread rolls in banh mi) and it had a delicious crispy texture. If there's no queue, we'd try this place again.
Our next stop was at Saga in Newtown. The most frustrating thing about this suburb is the tiny roads and parking. It's always a bitch to find a spot within 10 minute walk of the restaurants. We got a honey tart and cheesy Vegemite scroll.
The honey tart was really good! The filling was fluffy and light, with a sweet aroma enhancing the flavours. The honey was not overpowering and balanced out the salt in the pastry. The pastry was delicious and thin, with a flakey texture. The rosemary added the most subtle freshness. We highly recommend this tart!
This was the cheesy Vegemite scroll. For a non-vegemite lover, this was very savoury and salty. We felt this needed more butter to dampen the Vegemite for our palates. The scroll had a dense mouthfeel, almost like a compact croissant. The cheese was very mild and felt hidden amongst the strong Vegemite flavour.
Cow & The Moon
Every time we're in Newtown, we always go for Cow & The Moon. They are a family owned gelataria who were voted the best gelato in the world in 2014. We got the pineapple crumble and mandolin flavour. The pineapple crumble was tart and refreshing. The mandolin was an almond and coffee mixed gelato. It was very creamy while still maintaining an airy texture. Our friend Annie, who is a avid gelato eater, rated both 9 out of 10 on her Instagram @anniereviewsfood. If you're ever in the suburb, give Cow & The Moon a go. They have a lot of unique and seasonal flavours.
Moving on, we stopped at Donut Papi, a handmade gourmet doughnut shop in Redfern. Parking was relatively easy but this may have been due to the pandemic and Sydney being in stage 1 of reopening the city. The store was purely takeaway at the time of purchase, with no tables or chairs, hence we brought our own takeaway box for our photos 😂 We got a pineapple donut, an ube oreo donut and an ube pudding.
This was the pineapple donut. It was very fluffy and airy. The pineapple flavour was sweet with a slightly tart aftertaste. It had a tropical aroma that elevated the flavour. You can never go wrong with a fruity option in desserts. We really enjoyed this.
The colour on this ube oreo donut was vibrant - no editing required here 😍. On the other hand, the taste took on a mild approach. Ube tastes like a gentle potato, for those who have never eaten it before. This donut did well to incorporate the flavour without overdoing it - something that can be easily done with ube extract. There was a good ratio between the sugar and carbs. The donut was like the pineapple one; very airy and light.
We got the ube pudding because we thought it was ice cream but alas, we were very disappointed. It had a strong banana flavour. The texture was odd, like creamy and crumbly in the one bite. It was like a sponge mouthfeel. The ube flavour was mild. We probably would not get this next time.
Bourke Street Bakery
It was 4 PM when we made it to Bourke Street Bakery in Surry Hills, the original store. It was a very cute and quirky bakery. We had a lot of luck with parking again. We got the vanilla iced tea, a pork and fennel sausage roll and a ginger tart.
This was our first refreshing drink after a solid 4 hours of eating. It was satisfying, mildly sweet and fruity but a tad expensive, at $7 a bottle 😞
This staple pork and fennel sausage roll was voted as Australia's best sausage roll in 2019. And the best part is the recipe is online, released by Bourke Street Bakery themselves 😍 The filling was so savoury and flavourful, with a creamy texture. The pastry was well salted and crispy. It didn't feel like a heavy carb-loaded snack. There was pork juices dripping from a bite of the roll and I honestly could not get enough of it. It tasted divine!!! Go get one now. Highly recommend!!!
This was very interesting. The ginger brûlée tart was unique and good. The filling was creamy and light. The pastry was crumbly. The sugar topping had that delicate crunch to it. The pistachios added a mild sweetness to balance the ginger flavour. We found the ginger a little intense for our palette but anyone who loves the plant would surely enjoy this.
Flour and Stone
We were supposed to stop here for lamingtons but by the time we arrived, they had sold out 😭. On the weekends, you need to pre-order lamingtons because they're very popular. Lamingtons are an Australian dessert, made of sponge cake dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with coconut pieces. Next time we go, we shall do a proper review.
Edit 03/07/2020: We ordered a lamington over the weekend and it was really good! The size was huge, like a quarter piece could barely fit in our hands. The inside of the lamington was light, fluffy and tasted like soft cake batter. It was moist and creamy too. The shredded coconut was mild and added the sweetest touch. It tasted like a bougee lamington - highly recommend!
We had pre-ordered some toro and uni because we were having massive raw seafood cravings while being stuck in isolation hahaha. We even ate this on the hood of Annie's car LOL Desperate times call for desperate measures. We ordered another platter from Osaka bar HERE too.
The toro (tuna) pieces were thick and tasted fresh AF. The fish was a soft velvet and coated our mouths with the ocean goodness. The portion was perfect!
The uni (sea urchin) colour threw me off as it was a lot more brown than orange, despite it being in season. Once we bit into it, the flavours bursted. It had this beautiful creamy sweetness but was not as juicy as I would have liked it. The urchin had been cleaned well. (Sorry for the blurry photo. It was my only shot and I was too food coma out to focus 😅).
Okay. All done.
We ate all of this within 5 hours. And we ended our night at MamaTang in Cabramatta (malatang - a spicy Chinese noodle/broth dish). Our bellies were definitely 9 months pregnant and about to give birth to a food baby hahaha. Here is a photo of the sun setting in Drummoyne, taken between Osaka bar and MamaTang, to end such a satisfying and fun day.
Thanks for reading. Happy eating, friends!