You may affiliate the industrial suburb of Rosebery with oversized storage warehouses and designer outlet stores; however, the area is becoming quite the dining precinct, abuzz with delicious eateries. And now that our favourite bakery/cafe Black Star Pastry has set up shop in the neighbourhood, it makes the detour through these concrete 'burbs even more worth it.
Set in the Cannery alongside Kitchen By Mike, the cafe is sticking to the streamlined theme of Rosebery; exposed raw brick matched with high ceilings enhance the spacious warehouse feel. The sleek interior makes for a sophisticated space — a stark contrast to the cosy Newtown parent.
But it also seems that eclectic vibe we know and love about Black Star is somewhat amiss here. The staff are slightly detached and not as engaged as those behind the counter in Australia Street. Nonetheless, there are some fluencies that we recognise, from the chalkboard menu to the DIY toast station, the Little Marionette coffee and trendy tattooed staff — even the little black description cards with silver handwriting in front of the treats are the same.
Perhaps Christopher Thé and his team are at odds over what to do with all this excess room? We doubt it. The location may have changed, but the heavenly treats remain and we're loyal to the core. More space just means that we diners now have ample elbow room to throw our arms around in ecstasy over the incredible strawberry watermelon cake ($7.50). Our fellow patrons needn't fear anymore that their orange cake with Persian fig ($4.50 piece) or chocolate eclair ($5.20) will meet its fate with the floor. Elbows can stretch out here — jump for delicious joy all you like.
Whereas the Newtown store is driven by cakes, here it's more about lunch and bread, courtesy of the woodfired oven. It's getting put to good use by roasting chicken for the pita pockets ($10) and daily salads (from $5); they've even experimented with beetroot bread. The goat's cheese and roast tomato sandwich ($10) is lacking a real punch, however — maybe they're attempting to lay the focus on how great the sourdough is. Take home a loaf for only $8.
But who comes to Black Star for a sandwich anyway? Lest we forget what we really love about Black Star: the signature flaky pastries such as the boozy almond knot ($4.80); quiches like the mushroom and feta that have that well-balanced eggy wobble ($6.50); and the pies ($8) that give you a good excuse to never make your own. As always, the lamb shank and red wine pie ($8) is a hot-seller. Best be quick.
And butter me up and call me a cake, there's nothing like the sweet favourites: bread and butter pudding ($6.80) with dreamy Anglaise, the wonderfully rich chocolate hazelnut torte ($6.80), the coconut covered lemon myrtle chiffon cake ($4.80 piece) that is so ridiculously light and spongy it feels like you're eating velvet, and a zen garden ($7.50) — a pistachio, lemon and white chocolate layered cake is a Zen garden, in your gob.
To wash down all the glorious sweet and savoury delights, the house-brewed iced tea ($4) or cold drip coffees ($4) are ideal accompaniments. Need we say more?
Despite the the Rosebery branch being somewhat stark in comparison to the familiar Black Star that we have fallen head over heels with, don't let that deter you. The famed patisserie is still knocking us over with its exquisiteness. So warm your arms up in anticipation for that elbow-extending frenzied delight.