The world’s best patisseries revealed
Written by Craig Butcher
From the old to the new, the independent to the grand, and from light-as-a-cloud little pastries to the theatrically tiered and topped cakes of your dreams, we bring you three perfect patisseries.
La Pâtisserie des Rêves, Osaka
As far from traditional as it’s possible to go without losing the essence, the ‘patisserie of dreams’ brings an inspiring modernity to its creations. Here in Japan’s most avant-garde city, minimalist pastries lurk under clear glass domes – expect childhood flavours totally recreated. A renowned must-try is the Paris-Brest praline-doughnut creation.
Founded in 1817 when it was a renowned spot for the meeting of minds of Milan’s finest theatre-goers, Cova has since spread its wings worldwide. But the traditional corner caffè behind the local opera house remains where it all began. The coffees are impeccable and the pastries precise. Cova now also offers classic gelato and incomparable chocolates.
Combine Italian heritage with an Australian sense of humour and you have Adriano Zumbo’s all-conquering patisserie range and a rock ‘n’ roll patissier of note. Try Australia’s most famous dessert-maker’s own take on macarons (or ‘Zumbarons’) or his increasingly amazing salted-butter popcorn with kaffir lime and mandarin.
The patisserie redefined
While France and Belgium lay claim to the concept, and legally a ‘master pastry chef’ (who’s completed a written exam) must be present, in a modern patisserie pretty much anything goes. Japan is a hotbed of modern patisseries, but head to Vienna or Paris for a slice of tradition.