Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Candied Bakery, Spotswood


Candied Bakery
81A Hudsons Road
Spotswood, VIC 3015
Ph: (03) 9391-1335
Website
Twitter

Do you follow Dan Lepard on Twitter? He's the Aussie-born bread baker now based in Britain, and author of the fantastic book: The Handmade Loaf. He also writes an excellent column, How to Bake, for the Guardian newspaper. He was in Melbourne recently to film the Great Australian Bake-Off, and it's been so cool following his tweets as he discovers Melbourne's current food scene from an "outsider" perspective. (As someone who is really interested in Melbourne's dining scene and trends, I had to giggle when he tweeted his surprise that modern Mexican food is really popular in Melbourne right now!)

It was actually on his Twitter that I heard about Candied Bakery. Later that week, a friend of mine happened to suggest that we meet there for brunch, and I was more than keen! (She'd heard about Candied Bakery on Broadsheet).  Coincidentally, in the days leading up to our brunch, the lovely Adrian from Food Rehab published a post about Candied Bakery, including droolworthy pictures and a great interview with the owners. Anticipation levels were through the roof!!!

And speaking of Adrian, you may be interested to know that his book: What The Heck is Filipino Food?, has just won The Gourmand World Cookbook Awards for Best Asian Cuisine (Australia)!! Well done Adrian! Let's all send some much-deserved congratulations his way!

So... back to the bakery. Candied Bakery is on that stretch of Hudson Road in Spotswood that also houses Duchess of Spotswood and A Bunch of Cakes.  The cafes, shops and houses there are kind of a mix between actually old, faux-retro throwback and the rapidly gentrifying.

The menu
They describe themselves as an Aussie bakery with an American twist and a dash of European influence - a description which perfectly fits their on-trend, cross-cultural menu, don't you think?

Condiments and cutlery
The venue very much feels like a bakery, as opposed to a cafe - the space is dominated by the baked goods on display, and all the ordering is done up at the counter. Seating is limited to one large communal table, and some benches along one wall. Luckily it wasn't too packed the day we visited and it was easy to nab a spot on the communal table! (I'm a grumpy old lady who needs table space and does not like perching my plates precariously on my lap, hehehe!)

Peppermint Tea - $3.80

Cappuccino - $3.80

My coffee was good - quite strong and at a pleasant drinking temperature. It wasn't in the stratospheric coffee league of, say, St. Ali or Proud Mary, but it was a satisfying coffee nonetheless.

Bread baked in-house
I asked one of the staff behind the counter, and the breads are all baked in-house. I bought a country white loaf to take home - very, very good, with its crusty exterior and fluffy innards. I'll have to buy a ciabatta loaf next time and see how it compares to my beloved Let's A Loaf ciabatta! (BTW Let's A Loaf is the ciabatta they use at the fabulous Beatrix Bakes, hence why I'm in love with it).

So anyway, let's have a look at what we ate! Between the four of us, I think we did a great job covering the Australi-Ameri-Euro parts of the menu!

Beef & Onion roll - $5.00
Despite being in Australia for a good six years now, German Sandra has only just discovered the joys of sausage rolls. (So much time to make up for...) She wasn't a huge fan of this one, saying that there was too much messy flaky pastry and that the sausage part wasn't soft enough for her liking. However, I tried a little and really liked it! So I think it comes down to your personal preference. Besides, y'all know I can never have too much pastry!

And speaking of which...
Hot Beef Pie - $5.60
I ordered a good old meat pie - excellent flaky pastry, saucy meaty gravy, lots of tomato sauce. Heaven.

Our two friends ordered a roast beef ciabatta each. They were delightfully served with a side of potato chips. Cute!
Roast beef ciabatta roll - $9.50
I didn't try this one, but judging by the appreciative nods and smiles from my friends, they were greatly enjoyed. Randomly, they both commented on how good the mustard in the ciabatta was. What a strange thing to notice - must have been awesome mustard!

And moving to a more European item... a zuppa inglese donut.
Zuppa Inglese Donut - $4.00
This was a very good donut, all light and fluffy without a hint of greasiness, and a generous proportion of custard. I'm more of a jam donut girl myself, but if you like custard, then this is the donut for you!

Ok, so we've talked bread, we've talked pastry, we've talked sandwiches, we've talked donuts. However, despite it being a bakery, my absolute favouritest thing at Candied Bakery is not a baked item at all, but their house-made soft serve.
Vanilla soft-serve - $4.50
The creamy vanilla soft serve was decorated with crushed pretzels, hundreds and thousand and (I think) little cookie pieces. Such fun! (It reminded me of the Mister Whippy / Maccas soft serves I used to eat as a child, but vastly better quality).

Less colourful, but even more delicious, was the peanut butter and jelly soft serve.
Peanut Butter & Jelly soft serve - $4.50

I know, right? Peanut butter and jelly soft serve! Peanut butter jelly! Peanut butter jelly! Amaze! It was creamy and soft and had a lovely pure peanut flavour - I totally loved it. A word of warning though, these are quite rich and can definitely be shared - we shared this between three and struggled to finish.

I'm told they rotate their soft serve flavours - apparently they do a Milo-flavour as well. Cannot wait to try that one! (They have a Milo milkshake too... if I wasn't already so full I'd have totally ordered that too. Milo is The Best!)

One of our friends bought one of their famous nutella croissants to take home. I think she was planning on saving it for breakfast... but an hour after we left the cafe, I got a text from her: "I ate my croissant already". Whoops!

Candied Bakery on Urbanspoon

5 comments:

Ashley said...

Ommmggg peanut butter and jelly softserve? That totally has my name all over it! :D

Alaina said...

I am pretty positive it was Bone Suckin' Mustard - amazing and a staple in my fridge. Essential for toasted ham & cheese sandwiches.

msihua said...

Nutella Croissant? Say no more!

Agnes said...

Oh my god I need to visit just for the soft serve.

Adrian (Food Rehab) said...

Aw thanks for the props Sarah! You wok.

Gosh, I need to get ma hands on the peanut butter & jelly soft serve pronto. Love this post