Afternoon delight

Burch & Purchese

647 Chapel Street, South Yarra


She says
Time for a sugar hit. After lunch the other day Gerard and I decided to finally go to Burch & Purchese, the ‘sweet studio’ in South Yarra that everyone’s been talking about for ages now. We’re well behind the trend on this one. We’re so far behind that I can’t even see the bandwagon anymore, it started driving that long ago (then again I’m pretty short-sighted so my ‘no longer visible’ point is probably barely mid-distance).

We’d had a selection of little B&P goodies at Babushka a while ago (including the gold bullion bar which is an amazing salted caramel filled dark chocolate, available at the source in 6 packs for $18 – I highly recommend) and I was excited to see what else was on offer.

I went in bracing myself for Zumbo-esque queues (last time I was there I think I clocked 45 minutes of queue time) and was very pleasantly surprised to find that there was no queue. In fact when we go there we were the only people in the shop. The shop itself is gorgeous (although doesn’t have any seating) with a display case of cake-like goods as well as shelves and shelves of pre-packed chocolates and sauces etc. I have almost never been prouder of myself than when I managed to walk away from the $5 bag of homemade honeycomb.

Chocolate and spreads and much much more

He says
When I used to work in Brisbane every Monday, I’d arrive at the office and my boss would ask if I’d brought her anything from B&P. When I said no, she’d look at me disappointingly, with one of those piercing looks your mother used to give you when you’d forgotten to do something, again. Finally, after months of nagging encouragement, Marg and I finally found ourselves in B&P territory. And we were hungry for sweets.

After checking out the buzz on the interweb over lunch, I was expecting to queue. According to The Age, queuing is the done thing in Melbourne nowadays, so if it’s as popular as it appears online, there must be queue. But when we drove past, there was no queue. I wasn’t even going to get out of the car because I assumed it was shut. The lack of queue confused this bear of little brain so I was a little shocked when we found ourselves as the only shoppers in the rather lovely, albeit very pink looking shop. It’s a little hard to inconspicuously snap photos of all the delicious looking sweets when the shop assistant is staring at you. Don’t look, I get camera shy.

We ate
In a massive feat of will power we managed to leave B&P with a little carry bag with only one item each (I’ll be honest, we regretted not also buying a pack of the gold bullion bars).

The take home bag

Gerard chose the banana, caramel and rum ($9). Like all the cake-ish items it was made up of a bunch of different flavours and textures – caramelised white chocolate & vanilla mousse (the main component), macadamia spiced speculaas, caramelised banana cream, passionfruit jelly, ascorbic rum jelly, caramelised milk solids, passionfruit curd and chocolate velvet spray. Trying too hard? Maybe. Delicious? Definitely.

Banana, rum and caramel

I had the Raspberry, white chocolate, honey and lychee ($9). It was mainly made up of white chocolate & raspberry mousse filled with a layer of museli & honey nut sponge, raspberry & hibiscus jam, honey lychee syrup, raspberry cream and topped with white chocolate velvet spray and raspberry & lychee jelly. It was lucky these both came packed with a little card telling you what was in them, I would never have remembered. I really liked the mousse (although Gerard found it a little too sweet) but the highlights were probably the raspberry & hibiscus jam and the chocolate sprayed in a super light layer over the cake.

White chocolate, raspberry, honey and lychee

Final word
B&P is delicious. The individual cakes are, at $9 a piece, possibly over priced but I will almost definitely buy a bigger one (ranging from $30 – $170) for a birthday, or chrismas, or whenever else I can justify a cake. Also try the gold bullion bars, they’re amazing.

Burch & Purchese Sweet Studio on Urbanspoon

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  • Tian

    I had cakes like that at Zumbo in Sydney. Always sound so fanciful, but honestly you spoon into one and you don’t know what you’re eating (if without the description) .. taste all like butter to me