French Lettuce Patisserie & Bakery
237 Nicholson St
03 9347 7311
What better place to get a birthday cake than from this 30 year old patisserie out on Nicholson St just a short walk off Alexandra parade. Though fairly remote (far from most other shops), despite nearing closing time there were still diners about and a small queue for people collecting their cakes.
The wedding cakes standing prominently in the window display are a floral strut of elegant artwork. The team here make cakes for all occasions, French breads and pastries, not to mention the much praised vanilla slice. Apologies there aren’t many photos – I totally forgot to bring my camera when I went to collect the cake…sigh!!!
Chocolate Chantilli – at almost the same height as the diameter, this cake towers with grace. The ‘Chocolate flakes’ as mentioned in the menu description is utterly understated – they were more like thick slabs of couverture chocolate forming palisades around the cake. Not that I am complaining. Sandwiched between thick layers of silky cream are tiers of chocolate sponge soaked in Kirsh (a non sweet fruit brandy) that gives the cake a mellow cherry sweetness. I personally found there was too much cream for my liking, and was a little light on the kirsh – I sound like such an alcoholic.
Aside getting the cake I also snuck in…
Vanilla slice – The custard is absolutely heavenly soft and ethereally fluffy. It is sandwiched between thin crusts of crumbly pastry, and a generous dusting of icing sugar. I initially thought wow that’s a huge brick of a slice, but turns out it was so moreishly delicious that I scoffed the whole thing down in one go. No wonder they have been voted best in Melbourne by the Age.
Rating: Yummy cake; yummy +1 vanilla slice. I will try to remind myself to drop by for more of that custard heaven, and maybe try the other cakes and pastries.