Oh French pastries how you give us life. Even more so when we don’t need to travel half way across the world to sample you.
We think you might agree Gold Coasters and, with that in mind, we bring you happy news. Paris Brest opened in Southport recently offering an absolute haul of mouthwatering French goodies that you must get around ASAP.
The chic little space can be found on Young St and it’s pretty much the Parisian café of your dreams. Glossy black tiles line the walls while beautiful decanter-style pendant lights hang from the ceiling. Tables face the street for optimal sunshine soaking and if you close your eyes and inhale a choux pastry, you might find yourself thinking you’d just stepped into a sophisticated French bistro.
Speaking of pastries. Le Paris Brests are the hero of your adventure with plenty of flavours you simply cannot go past.
The main event is a light, crispy, choux pastry filled with hazelnut praline cream but we’d also recommend the Strawberry and Almond flavour. For comparison purposes of course.
Le Paris Brests were created in 1910 by Pastry Chef Louis Durand upon request from the organiser of a bike race between Paris and the town of Brest. The cake is ring shaped representing bicycle wheels and that is the story of that. Plus, the French obviously love to make pastries and not one person has ever complained about it.
Not only those sweet little babies though, owner Virgil and the team also make La Tarte Tatin which is a French upside down apple tart complete with homemade shortbread. Be still our hearts. Have you ever tried making an upside down cake? That is a hard thing to do. Oh and there’s Steamed Chocolate Fondant too. Yes there is.
If something savoury is more your choice, we HIGHLY recommend sampling the Le Croque Madame because sweet mother of cheesy heaven (whatever that means). It’s kind of a ham and cheese toasted sandwich but with French cheese and ham and also Bechamel baked into the sourdough bread. Absolute taste sensation friends.
Of course, you may also eat all of the crepes.
French coffee, champagne and beer are also on offer so it really is an entire experience and right in the heart of Southport. What a treat.
Virgil is a delightful French man who, having lived in Australia for the past five years, saw a gap in the authentic French food market and decided to gift us with all the goodies he could possibly come up with. What a guy.
Merci beaucoup Virgil, à bientôt.
LOCATION: 18 Young Street, Southport
HOURS: 8.30am until 9pm daily
Words and photos by Kirra Smith
Well the last few days of healthy eating were fab(ish) but we’re done with that and you will be too once you see what rolled into Robina on Christmas Eve.
It’s called My French Pastries and it’s the perfect way to kick off our 2020 food tour of the Gold Coast because as everybody knows, pastries are life and French pastries are even better than that.
The newbie isn’t technically all that new – husband and wife duo Jen and Antonio Marchesi have been baking authentic treats from home for the last few years, selling via an online page and wholesaling to local cafes.
Lucky for us, they decided to open their very own café at Robina Quays so we can pop in every single day for a sweet, indulgent treat (or two).
Antonio has been a pastry chef for 17 years and Jen is French, which is obviously the perfect combination. The pair decided they wanted to create a place that felt exactly the same as walking into a French patisserie with authentic, simple and quality eats and here we all are.
Everything is made from scratch using the very best produce (Belgian chocolate for example) and it’s extremely delicious.
So what can you eat?
Well sweet goodies like Key Lime Chantilly, Lemon Meringue, Blueberry and Chocolate tarts, which are both beautiful and very yummy.
There’s also Flan Patissier, which is the French equivalent of a custard tart, French Apple Turnovers, croissants (SO GOOD) and Croque Monsieur; a baked ham and cheese sandwich that will probably change your life.
So all the greatest buttery, sugary things.
Pop in for a coffee and a sit down or grab one of everything to take home and enjoy in peace.
Happy days Robina, we’ll be seeing you very soon.
LOCATION: Robina Quays Shopping Centre, 5/361 Robina Parkway, Robina
HOURS: Tuesday 6.30am until 2.30pm, Wednesday to Friday 6.30am until 3pm and Saturday 7am until 2pm
Words and photos by Kirra Smith
In case you were wondering when the Gold Coast’s onslaught of epic new eateries would end, the answer is never and our ever-growing status as an unmissable Aussie foodie destination is just fine by us.
On that note, today we bring you news from Parkwood, a place we don’t often get to chat about but when we do (now), it’s news you’re going to want to read.
Ida’s Kitchen is the name of the bright, naturally lit space, found on Olsen Ave (opposite Southport Sharks). Ida’s brings good food, good coffee and a team of passionate people to the northern Gold Coast.
It’s a vibrant little spot with natural wood, white walls, pops of blue and cascading greenery with both high bench seating and a low-set, more intimate table-situation.
Coffee-wise the roasts are brewed by the team but each week a new roastery will be featured for filter coffees. Oh and GOOD NEWS, they use real chocolate on top of the coffees, none of that powdered business. What a revelation.
In terms of eats, Head Chef Kym Steward and Head Pastry Chef Elsa Holland have created a menu filled with fresh, simple ingredients (sourced locally wherever possible) to make up a slew of tasty, unlike-anything-else-around dishes.
The Kimchi Waffle is a gamechanger with a spicy Asian watercress salad and toasted peanuts on top of a Korean Kimchi and cabbage waffle. We also (obviously) highly suggest adding Karaage Chicken to that one.
The Shroom Fritters are also a taste sensation – mushroom, aged Parmesan and sage fritters served with sautéed greens, cauliflower puree and a poached egg.
Sidenote: how good has the cauliflowers’ come up been over the last few years. Versatile little guy.
If you’re after something a little lighter, go for Ida’s Crunch Salad with quinoa, freekeh pomegranate, avocado, toasted almonds, cumin spiced yoghurt and a citrus dressing. Probably also add Karaage Chicken to this one. We love Karaage Chicken a lot.
Sweets-wise, Elsa has created some absolute gems including a Lemon Cheesecake with tangy lemon cream and vanilla Chantilly cream, all on a gluten free base and there’s also a to-die-for Strawberry Tart on a gluten free chocolate shortcrust with vanilla crème patissiere and all of the fresh strawberries.
They’re close-your-eyes-and-sigh at first taste good.
So who’s moving to Parkwood? Same, see you there neighbours.
LOCATION: 250 Olsen Ave, Parkwood
HOURS: From 6am to 3pm daily
Words and photos by Kirra Smith