Sam and I caught up with some old & new friends for lunch in Newtown, Sydney last week. They were in town on a yoga training camp (I kept my mouth shut about that and won’t say anything about it here either).
Anyhow, we finished lunch and Nick, an old Newtown resident himself, wanted to have a bit of a look around and see what was new and possibly also have a little bit of dessert…..don’t mind if I do. We made it our duty to check out the best cafes in Newtown, Sydney.
The first port of call for a good cake in Newtown is the iconic Black Star Pastry & Cafe. Personally, I was hoping to get one of their ninja-bread men – call me juvenile but how can you resist a ginger bread man decorated in dark chocolate to look like a ninja?
Sadly, that was not to be so I opted for the éclair (with chocolate so dark that light cannot escape its surface), Sam opted for a Persian orange cake with figs (gluten free) and our yoga buddies went for one of the Strawberry & Watermelon cakes. It will not surprise you that all of them tasted as amazing as they sound (naturally the éclair was the best because it had chocolate…..right?).
That being said, if you are new to Sydney and you aren’t one of the lucky few who can frequent Black Star on a regular basis, then I suggest going for the strawberry & watermelon. I have seen it listed on quite a few “must eats in Sydney” style lists and there is certainly a bit of buzz about it on the streets too. If you are a tourist, and fancy a cake but can’t get yourself away from Darling Harbour – then head to the Powerhouse Museum, where Black Star have just opened an outpost.
Like any hole in the wall venue in Sydney with a bit of a reputation, there is a queue….always. Don’t be discouraged though, it does move quick and the results are always worth it. The coffee is really good as well & served quickly. Historically, Black Star has been essentially a take away venue as seating is limited but it seems, for the moment at least, that they have taken over next door so there is more (although not ample) seating available. There are also a good range of savoury items as well (i.e pies, sausage rolls, bread and a surprisingly good quiche menu).
Maybe it was the sugar high, but we ended up hitting another sweets venue up the road. Brewtown Newtown. Now, if you are a foodie, no doubt you have heard of a cronut. For the uninitiated, this is the pastry version of the Frankenstein’s monster that is a turducken…..a cross between a croissant and a donut.
Anyhow, you might have had one as there are a few versions floating around (i.e. Adriano Zumbo’s Zonut) but trust me, Brewtown Newtown beats them all. Glazed, cinnamon, jam, chocolate – the flavours tend to rotate and they have the odd other delight as well (see the milo donut – YUM).
Like Black Star, there are other options here but it is really all about cronuts and coffee (which is pretty good as well). Again there is a queue, but if you can handle a take away and are prepared to eat in the street (you would not be alone – there are often more people in the street than in the restaurant) then you have to give it a go.
There are plenty of other great Newtown eats and plenty of dessert places as well – and I will endeavor to get to (or get back to in most cases) all of them in time. I suggest you start with these two though – between them there is more than enough to keep you entertained for a while!