The Portmanteau Press has compiled a list of the ultimate Christmas treats in Sydney.Whether you’re looking for something traditional or a creative, modern twist – the patisseries, bakeries and chocolatiers around Sydney have you covered for a very merry Christmas.
‘Tis the season for indulgence and nothing gets everyone in the Christmas spirit like festive food. Christmas is just around the corner. At this point you’re probably pre-occupied with figuring out how you’ll manage to fit the turkey in the oven, finalising your recipes for a feast with all the trimmings and still running around buying gifts at the eleventh-hour.
Who has time to replicate that show-stopping dessert you saw on Pinterest or bake trays of traditional treats by Christmas Eve?Perhaps you’ve been entrusted to bring along something sweet to neighbourhood drinks, a work party or your in-laws lunch?
Now all you have to do is pour yourself a G&T, sit back and decide which treats you’ll be adding to your wish list. You’ll even have time to watch Love Actually this year.
BOURKE STREET BAKERY
One always expects good things from Sydney’s favourite Bourke Street Bakery, and they certainly don’t disappoint with their fruit mince pies. Expect crumbly, buttery pastry encasing an old-fashioned fruit mince filling. The ratio of pastry to fruit is on the gloriously excessive side of things. They are dangerously moreish, but do make sure you save a few to leave out for Santa. While you’re collecting the mince pies from your local Bourke Street Bakery, you also ought to grab a couple of the adorable gingerbread people.
Fruit mince pie $3 each/ 6 for $17. Gingerbread people $3.50 each/ 4 for $13
633 Bourke Street, Surry Hills (and other locations across Sydney)
ADRIANO ZUMBO PATISSIER
For those who opt for the summery style Christmas in Sydney – prawns fresh from the Fish Market, crisp white wine, a backyard BBQ and endless boxes of cherries – you get the picture. Needless to say, a traditional pudding just doesn’t suit the setting. Adriano Zumbo, Sydney’s Willy Wonker of delectable desserts, has a created a cake that will put the cherry on the top of your feast. Man VS Coconut has a moist coconut sponge, cherry jam, coconut crunch and a creamy mousse. Its airy texture, bright candy-cane colours and cherry jam filling make it a creative Christmas cake alternative.
Man VS Coconut cake (serves 8-10 people) $43
296 Darling Street, Balmain (and other locations across Sydney)
One of the most beautiful cakes in Sydney; elegantly decorated with raspberries, lychee, pistachio shards and opulent gold leaf. It tastes just as exquisite as it looks.
The Monet cake is a white chocolate and vanilla bavaroise on a base of coconut and almond meringue, layered with fresh raspberries with a centre of lychee jelly, pain de gene and then covered in a white chocolate glaze. This layered masterpiece is so light and fresh, it’s the ideal dessert to be paired with a glass of celebratory champagne.
Monet cake large (serves 8-10) $60.00
47 Argyle Street, The Rocks
BLACK STAR PASTRY
These sophisticated, generously sized fruit mince pies are some of the best in town. The open-top design with a simple pastry star and dusting of icing sugar makes for an attractive party piece. This does not come as a surprise, as Black Star are renowned for aesthetically pleasing desserts.
Despite their chic appearance, the homemade taste could fool your guests into thinking they have been baked by grandma. Go ahead, Christmas isn’t Christmas without nibbling on fruit mince pies throughout the day. Oh, and they go down very nicely with a cup of tea.
Mince pies $5.50 each/ 6 for $30
277 Australia Street, Newtown (and other locations)
If you’ve wandered the streets of Paris in December, you’ll have to agree that no one does beautiful window displays and festive delicacies quite like the French. Luckily for us, Ladurée, the purveyor of the world’s most celebrated macarons, has a glamorous boutique in Woollahra.
The swoon-worthy ‘Pierrot’ Christmas boxes make for the most lavish gifts, stylish stocking-filler or just a touch of luxury to pass around on Christmas Eve.
Seasonal macaron flavours include; cognac, Tahitian vanilla and the rich chocolate decorated with gold leaf.
Pierrot gift box of 6 macarons $32/ Pierrot gift box of 14 macarons $68 * additional cost for chocolate gold leaf macaron
1/111 Queen Street, Woollahra
LA MAISON DE L’ÉCLAIR
The holidays are a time for a little bit of naughtiness and nothing is quite as alluring as these signature gold éclairs; crunchy hazelnut praline and Ecuador chocolate cream filling encased in a light choux pastry. Glittery, golden éclairs look nothing short of magnificent on the Christmas table and they taste heavenly. For a ‘white Christmas’ look, the vanilla éclairs with a silver leaf touch are just as divine.
Large signature gold éclair $8.50/ Large vanilla éclair $6.50 *both also available in ‘mini’ size
91 Bondi Road, Bondi
Lorraine Godsmark is one of Sydney’s most accomplished pastry and dessert chefs, so something from Lorraine’s Patisserie is a sure inclusion on the yuletide wish list. Her chic New York style cheesecake is available all year round, but simply perfect for Christmas. Some may be dreaming of a white Christmas, others, of a white Christmas cheesecake. It’s light with a subtle lemony zing, and will delight your guests with its creamy texture. Best of all, it has a gingery biscuit base that incidentally tastes just like Christmas.
New York Cheese Cake (small serves 6-8 people) $50
Shop 5, Palings Lane, 320 George Street, Sydney
There is something delightfully old-fashioned about Haigh’s Chocolate that makes one feel rather special opening up a box. The oldest family-owned chocolate maker in Australia knows a thing or two about making exceptional chocolate.
There’s an extensive Christmas collection, but the ultimate extravagance is the large Christmas milk and dark assortment presented in a splendid gold box. The assortment includes a few of the limited-edition gingerbread nougat chocolates.
Alternatively, the Christmas pudding and brandy truffle gift box is brimming with picture-perfect truffles in a truly festive flavour. Just quietly, they’re best enjoyed in the evening with your favourite tipple.
Christmas pudding and brandy truffles gift box $59.50/ Large Christmas milk and dark assortment $74.95 /Bauble tin with dark chocolate hearts $14.50 / Milk chocolate baubles $6.95
Shop 52, Queen Victoria Building, 455 George Street, Sydney
BLACK VELVET SYDNEY
A shimmering, silver gingerbread house looks incredible underneath the Christmas tree and is sure to bring out everyone’s inner child. It doubles as a striking decoration leading up to the big day and then a fun after-lunch activity in figuring out how to best demolish it.
Black Velvet also make designer Christmas cakes (pictured above) that you have a chance to win this week in our exciting Christmas giveaway.
Gingerbread house $119.95/ Christmas cake $169.00
Shop 3a, 110 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst
Textbook Patisserie opened its doors in Alexandria this year, and is now one of Sydney’s hippest new offerings. Textbook has your Christmas breakfast sorted with the unique ‘Croismas’; a tree shaped croissant brimming with rum and raisin crème pâtissière. Savour this special breakfast with a cup of coffee before the mayhem of children, party preparation or spending a day with the in-laws. The imaginative Christmas-themed desserts are certainly worth a mention.
There’s Santa’s Sleigh; chocolate mud cake, raspberry mousseline and passionfruit cremeux, or the Christmas Tree; a mini three-tier mango and raspberry mousseline on a coconut dacquoise, dusted in coconut flakes.
‘Croismas’ pastry $5.00 / Santa’s Sleigh $9.50 (individual size) / Christmas Tree $9.50 (individual size)
274 Botany Road, Alexandria
SWEET SPOT PATISSERIE
The Sweet Spot is a Randwick neighbourhood favourite. This European-inspired patisserie, with a touch of Greek heritage, has its fair share of cheerful treats on offer. The white chocolate and macadamia shortbread Christmas trees are a gorgeous, edible decoration for the table. Meanwhile, the enormous gingerbread house will impress both young and old. For dessert, mix things up with the pistachio panacotta cake.
Gingerbread house $70 / Shortbread Christmas tree $22/ Pistachio panacotta $48
18 Perouse Road, Randwick
Koko Black opened in the Strand Arcade this year; bringing high quality, Belgian-styled chocolate to Sydney. The upmarket Melbourne chocolatier is known for their contemporary aesthetic and a substantial price tag that typically accompanies premium, handmade chocolate. This year’s seasonal collection is certainly tempting. The silver chocolate stars made with solid milk chocolate are an excellent pick, as they can double as an ornament on the coffee table. That is, of course, if they last that long.
Silver milk chocolate stars $15
Shop 3, Queen Victoria Building, 445 George Street, Sydney
Styling and photography by Eddie Hart
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