If it’s bombshell baked goodness you crave – sweet or savoury – then you gotta hit Bourke Street Bakery in Sydney. Baker Chefs Paul Allam and David McGuinness – also the owners – have Sydney in crumbles for their pastries, tarts, cakes, rolls and artisan breads. A steady stream of locals in the Surry Hills neighbourhood and beyond waft through the bakery, often forming lines outside the door.
There’s just no flaking the divine eats that butter the foodie soul. My indulgences were of the roll and tart variety: A Lamb, Harissa and Almond Roll ($4.50) and a Milk Chocolate Ganache Tart or "Chocolate Tart” ($4.40) with a smooth caffeine hit of long black and soy milk ($3.00). A perfect 4:30′ish more than a snack, not quite a meal, devour of high pecking order.
My first item of demolishment was the Lamb, Harissa and Almond Roll. Lightly crisp on the outside with a soft, welcomed warmth on the inside, the proof’s all ’round, but especially so in the minced lamb. Spotted with raisins and met with the occasional almond, this kebab-like roll is lightly spiced and oh-so royal.
For dessert: the Chocolate Ganache Tart is a culinary sweet dream from first to last bite. Cocoa flavoured custard is bordered round by an all at once crunchy and chewy butter tart. Whipped smooth and rich in texture, this dessert is a coming out party for chocoholics no longer anonymous.
The treat’s not just in the eats. First time or regular, staff will get to know your name and ask how life’s going. “Good coffee and staff are great,” says once a week regular Peter (Photo: Below). “There’s no attitude here.”
Frequent visitor to the Surry Hills neighbourhood, Daniel (photo: left) brings it home to food and ambience. "The main thing is the food, it’s really good. It’s just really a cool, funky atmosphere and the location is nice.” My aesthetic eye turns on as Daniel gestures to the outdoor furniture.
A caged base and blackened oven tray form a small table top while wooden bench tops with rusted steel legs encourage communal seating. The furniture can only be described as aged without fuss, minimalist funk.
But no matter where you sit – outside or inside the boulangerie – food done more than just right and friendly, knowledgeable staff leaven Bourke Street Bakery to popular taste amongst Sydney-siders. And if you want any indication that the proof’s in the pudding, just wait in a line outside the door or walk right in, where at least one delish looking thing will say “Hello!”
Bake n' eat from the comfort of your home with Paul Allam and David McGuinness' recipe cookbook Bourke Street Bakery: The Ultimate Baking Companion available in-store or online at Amazon.
Bourke Street Bakery has four locations across Sydney in Surry Hills, Alexandria, Marrickville and Potts Point. Opening hours are 7 AM on weekdays and 8 AM on weekends with closing hours at 4 PM, 5 PM or 6 PM; day and location dependent.