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What Are The Best Bakeries In Melbourne?

If you were one of the try-hards, who jumped on the lockdown sourdough trends, for shame. Did you think you stood a chance in a city so renowned for baked goods that The New York Times deemed it worthy of the world’s best croissant? Of course, Victoria has plenty of lofty, globally renowned accolades to boast about, but having some of the best bakeries in Melbourne – and in the country, for that matter – is a reputation to be especially proud of.

Sourdough, and baking at large, is a serious labour of love. It can be a week-long process (at best) of kneading, resting, and folding to craft a moist loaf, perfect crust, or caramelised bun. Not to mention the sacrifices bakers make by way of hideous early morning wake-ups.

Here are our top picks for the best bakeries in Melbourne (and the odd pastry shop) that are a cut above the rest.

The Best Bakeries In Melbourne

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Bread comes in many forms, from crusty baguettes and ciabatta to the simple loaf. However, it can be difficult to differentiate between subpar bakeries and top-notch boulangeries. Culture Trip ate its way across Melbourne to compile this guide to the best bakeries in the city.

Baker Bleu

Baker Bleu's bread is so exceptional that it is regularly ordered by high-end restaurants such as Attica, Cutler & Co., and the Carlton Wine Room. Sometimes the excellent viennoiserie at Baker Bleu takes a back seat to the bakery's high-hydration, long-fermented, deeply caramelised loaves, which are rightfully regarded as the bakery's shining stars. While the storefront may state that it is open until 3 p.m., it is not unusual for supplies to run out well before that time.

Fortunately, word got out that this unassuming bakery in Elsternwick was Attica's covert provider, and the entire operation was forced to go public with a massive 400 square metre Caulfield expansion.

But even with twice as much output, the lines for their 18-hour fermented sourdough, fresh bagels, and challah brioche are ridiculous. Baker Bleu perseveres through the challenges of being a top Melbourne bakery.

Mister Nice Guy’s Bakeshop

Mister Nice Guy Bakeshop is your allergy-friendly one-stop-shop. Everything in their bakery is 100% egg-free, dairy-free, lactose-free, cochineal & gelatine-free, with soy-free, gluten-free, wheat-free, corn-free, fructose friendly & low gi options! 

They believe in bringing awareness to what they positively put into our bodies and believe that anything you need in a recipe can be found in cruelty-free ways & made even better. Like our awesome baked goods!

Lune Croissanterie

Named to the Gourmet Traveller list of “Melbourne’s Cult Sweets”, Lune Croissanterie has gained a following, as proven by the marathon queues each weekend. 

Although you’ll have to wake up at an ungodly hour just to snatch one of their pastries, it’s worth it. Their croissants are crafted in a climate-controlled, purpose-built facility, assuring that each is crisp and golden. Aside from traditional French croissants and pain au chocolat, Lune also serves lemon curd cruffins and twice-baked croissants, as well as other goodies.

Wild Life Bakery

Tearing into the crunchy, deep caramel crust of WildLife Bakery's sourdough feels like holy communion with carbs. The intense, chewy crumb in slices swabbed with miso butter or dipped into harissa-heavy shakshouka is why locals cram this bakery for breakfast.

They also leave with great, hunking baguettes and sandwiches you hope will never end for lunch. Toasties arrive thick as a forehead and big as a face, yet achieve the all-important mission of properly melting the abundance of sweet and nutty Comté inside couched around sticky, Worcestershire-rich onion. 

Meanwhile, old school salad sambos achieve new crush status when folded into chewy sourdough baguettes, lifted with the zip of pickled carrot and tempered with soft avo and roast beetroot. The fruit bread even moves us. Plump gems of raisin, apricot and whole dates glisten in the cross-section and quenelles of smooth mascarpone and spoonable lemon curd lifts this far above its lowly status on the café menu pecking order. 

Only the photogenic brown rice congee, topped with a topaz-yolked soy egg, kale furikake and pickled mushrooms, falls short of ecstasy. It feels good to eat but lacks that deep, stock flavour. Perhaps though, its greatest crime may lie in being in the company of greater things. It’s best to take your time here – fresh or toasted, these malty crusts are deafeningly crunchy, with a crumb so elastic that any haste will imperil palates and jaws.

Alternate bites with ace Market Lane coffee sips, Mörk hot chocolate, sticky chai, or even cans of La Sirène Saison. Few manage to pay without also pillaging the front counter, orderly laden with whole loaves, croissants and rustic cakes like rosella wheat carrot or Khorasan fruit sponge. This wide, former mechanic’s warehouse in Brunswick East is all brushed cement and thin-silhouetted furniture, warmed by the moon-like glow of pendant globes. Two massive circular windows offer the room an aquarium-like view of the kitchen. Still, the most direct communion between bread baker and breaker happens on the plate at this temple to sourdough.

Rustica Sourdough

Established in 2012 by Brenton Lang, Rustica Sourdough is the place to go if you’re into artisan bread. With choices such as quinoa soy and linseed, apricot date and walnut, and vine fruit and rosemary, Rustica boasts an unconventional range of sourdough flavour combinations.

There is also a café with an all-day brunch menu featuring eggs benedict with lobster and charcoal brioche, a French toasted hot cross bun, and a breakfast salad with warm grains. Rustica Sourdough supports sustainable farming practices.

FAQs Best Bakeries In Melbourne

The success of any bakery, whether a home-based or commercial operation, hinges largely on the quality of the products. Creating a niche for your bakeries, such as stunning cakes or unusual pastries, can help set you apart and build a loyal customer base.

Cakes represent the largest portion of total bakery sales at 24 per cent, followed by cookies 12 per cent, bread/rolls 11 per cent, cupcakes 8 per cent, sandwiches/wraps 6 per cent, and yeast-raised doughnuts and beverages tied at 5 per cent.

New product success varied by type of operation. For full-line retail bakeries, cakes ranked first, followed by bread and cookies. New cake products included cake slices, individual celebration cakes, cake pops, seasonal cakes, and specialty cake fillings.

Opportunities and threats are factors not influenced by the bakery. For example, a competitor opening across the street is one of the threats of a bakery, while a decrease in the price of flour is an opportunity. The City of College of San Francisco has published several analyses on its website, including one for a bakery, which may guide your thinking.

Falco Bakery

falco bakery

Rockwell and Sons may have departed us, but it was time for a change from all accounts from its co-owners. Falco Bakery has taken its place, and it focuses on traditional baking techniques with a few flourishes to keep the product true to its Collingwood home.

In keeping with the fundamentals of Michael Bascetta, Manu Potosi and Casey Wall's other businesses Bar Liberty and Capitano, Falco will use locally sourced ingredients with a focus on the seasons. Flours are sourced from Wholegrain Milling in NSW and Powlett Hill in Victoria, with chocolates coming from Birdsnake and milk from Saint David's Dairy. 

They've also brought on another partner to the business, Christine Tan, who will be producing all the sourdough, buns and baked goods on-site. Before Falco, Tan spent 12 months at San Fransisco's famed Tartine Bakery and has since worked as the head baker for Loafer in North Fitzroy. Expect Swedish cardamom buns, vegan chocolate brownies, sourdough English muffins, hot pies and sandwiches available for purchase next to those full, sourdough loaves accompanied by Falco's coffee, roasted in-house.

If The Made Well Group’s (Bar Liberty and Capitano) experimental venture into small-batch baked goods is wrong, then who wants to be right? Ranking top position in Melbourne’s best hot cross bun search in its first Easter season is impressive… but the buns hold nothing against the permanent buttermilk English muffins, Rockwell pie (named in memory of the site’s former life as Rockwell and Sons) and daily burger combinations on golden caramel brioche.

Q Le Baker

This artisan bakery specialises in whole wheat sourdough bread and pastries, resulting in a more complex and nutritious loaf.  Q Le Baker uses locally milled rye, spelt and Khorasan flours from Rolling Stone Mill and Laucke Flour Mills. Baker, Quinten Berthonneau, who has previously worked at Vue De Monde and Chez Dre, sources produce for his filled goods from other vendors in the Prahran Market for his meat pies, sandwiches and sweets. 

Dominating a corner stretch of Prahran Market is a pretty arrogant move unless you back up the credentials of Quentin Berthonneau and Marion David. Respectively, the duo boasts Vue de Monde, Chez Dre and Baker D.Chirico between them. The menu at Q le Baker throws out specialty spanners like chocolate sourdough, but when they sling baguettes as good as the boulangeries of France, there’s no need to veer far from the classics.

All Are Welcome

All Are Welcome is situated in an old Christian Science reading room and adopted its name from the old signage above the door. Owner and baker Boris Portnoy set up All Are Welcome with an exposed kitchen so customers can watch the small team prepare for the next day's bake while purchasing their goods.

Portnoy previously worked as the head pastry chef of The Restaurant at Meadowood, a three-Michelin star restaurant in the Napa Valley, before relocating to Melbourne to set up his bakery. Expect seeded and rye sourdoughs, flatbreads, viennoiserie, and even the Georgian cheese-filled bread, khachapuri.

Wood frog Bakery

Wood frog has quietly grown from their bakery in St Kilda and now have nine outposts slinging their 28-hour, naturally leavened, hand-sharpened soir, fruit, spelt, pumpkin and olive loaves built off an eight-year-old starter. 

True devotees pre-order their bread to avoid disappointment, which we would strongly advise if you’re stalking out hot cross buns around Easter.

Loafer Bread

We like eating carbs and feeling righteous – hence our love for Loafer Bread. They exclusively use local, organic and biodynamic ingredients – from the Gippsland beef that fills the pies to the certified organic stone-milled flours, raisins and grains in every last loaf and cookie. The Fitzroy North bakery supplies its ethical wares to eco-conscious cafés Slow Poke and Cheshire and is a Stirling café itself. 

We’re all about getting a mixed box of their buttery shortbread biscuits, or snaffling a curbside table, fair trade coffee and climbing between the layers of a flaky butter croissant and the most densely nut-populated walnut and cinnamon scroll in town. Pastries are hot property, so don’t dilly-dally get there in the AM.

Ferguson Plarre Bakehouses

Ferguson Plarre Bakehouses has always been and still is a family-owned and operated business. They have a long & proud history dating back to the 1800s. Both the Ferguson & Plarre families have early European roots, and they established themselves in Australia over 110 years ago. 

The Ferguson Plarre history commenced in 1901 in the Northern and Western suburbs, and both families established themselves as household names in Melbourne.

To Be Frank Bakery

The shop, which is located in a quiet alley off of Collingwood's main drag, is an artisan bakery. The loaves at To Be Frank are made using long, natural fermentation from organic or sustainable products that have been farmed ethically.

Baguettes, fougasse, rye sourdoughs, and focaccia; pastries like fruit tarts, croissants, and escargots; producers like Demeter Biodynamic Co (VIC), Wholegrain Milling Co (NSW), Frattali Olive Oil (VIC), and Dalhousie Farm Eggs (VIC).

Head beaker Franco Villalva, who has worked in the kitchens of European restaurants and Bacash before opening, To Be Frank with Lauren Parsons, has created an open-format warehouse where bread lovers can watch their loaves being fermented, folded, and shaped before being loaded into a multi-deck oven and transferred to the shelves.

Burnham Bakery and Piggery Café

The Vue De Monde chef-restaurateur has so many pots on the boil that it seems to be his life's aim. And this time, he may have done it, opening a veritable theme park for food fans in the Dandenongs.Burnham Beeches is 22 hectares of heritage-listed beauty, built by the Nicholas family in the 1930s.

By 2018, you’ll be able to stay in the stunning cream mansion, rent a dog to take truffling and get a discount on your lodgings by rooting up the veggie patch. Of course, Croquet and brewery tours are also part of the romantic plan, but for now, you’ll have to content yourself with buying bread and brunching in the Piggery – the commercial bakery and café.

If glutardiness precludes bun fun, go for the charcoal chicken – a family feast for $28. A half bird is barbecued on the charcoal grill out front and laid out in big juicy sections with a stack of golden chicken nuggets and tartare sauce, with a side platter of salads. 

On our visit, it’s dressed with wild greens and whole globe artichokes rolled in a caper-parsley dressing and a finely blitzed cauliflower salad packed with cumin seeds and chickpeas. But, of course, you could make a meal of the salads alone. Or out of cakes. Afternoon tea is a festival of varying hot snacks from the kitchen chased by fruit scones, soft-centred pistachio cakes, rich orange and almond frangipane tarts and Lamingtons from a huge spread, laid out daily after lunch. It's $40 with a glass of Pol Roger Champagne if you're not driving. Although barista Trent Heffer (ex-Silo) is here, giving plenty of lift-off power to Five Senses beans.

You almost want to hate the place, so picture-perfect are the rustic concrete walls, vine-covered silo turrets and waitstaff in denim and plaid. And then there’s the composting dehydrator, biodiesel bread vans and a whole mob of rescue emus. We do hate the family in matching vests taking a selfie out front. But huffy Toorak mums and rampant Instagrammers aside, Burnham Beeches is a short trip with a big payoff if you value a good crust and Downton Abbey luxury with a bonus eco-bent.

Tivoli Road Bakery

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Husband-and-wife team Michael and Pippa James opened Tivoli Road Bakery in 2013 after stints at Baker D Chirico, Vue de monde and Cutler & Co. 

Prepared with time-honoured techniques, the variety of bread include stone-ground sourdough, fruit and olive bread, and Turkish bread. On the weekend, you can nab 100% rye sourdough, as well as treacle and oat soda bread. Tivoli also prepares a range of Viennoise pastries and fresh-from-the-oven Aussie classics, such as pies, sausage rolls and pasties.

Noisette

David Menard, a baker in his fifth generation, opened Noisette to give Melburnians a taste of the French countryside with a contemporary twist. Pastries like croissants and macarons in a rainbow of colours fill the glass case. Baguettes, brioche, multigrain, rye, and wholemeal loaves are all prominently displayed behind the counter. Having locations in both Bentleigh and Port Melbourne means you have twice as many options for retail therapy.

Baker D. Chirico

Designed by March Studio, the stunning interior of Baker D. Chirico was modelled after a breadbasket with undulating wooden slats that serve as shelves. 

The selection on offer is just as impressive as the space itself, with savoury pastries, beef pies, fruit buns and irresistible nougat, but it’s the sourdough loaves that keep customers coming back for more.

Rustica Sourdough

Established in 2012 by Brenton Lang, Rustica Sourdough is the place to go if you’re into artisan bread. With choices such as quinoa soy and linseed, apricot date and walnut, and vine fruit and rosemary, Rustica boasts an unconventional range of sourdough flavour combinations.

There is also a café with an all-day brunch menu featuring eggs benedict with lobster and charcoal brioche, a French toasted hot cross bun, and a breakfast salad with warm grains. Rustica Sourdough supports sustainable farming practices.

Penny for Pound

The tantalising waft of butter should be enough to lure you from Bridge Road into this tiny pastel gem tucked behind MayDay Coffee. 

Alongside a certain country, sourdough and mouth-watering cruffins are croissant combinations nothing short of inspired. But, of course, the don of all croissants has to the Reuben; filled with pastrami, sauerkraut, cheese, Russian dressing, and adorned with a pickle. Slightly toasted and its perfection.

All Are Welcome

The Northcote Christian Science Reading Room is home to one of Melbourne's best beers and a former three-Michelin-star pastry chef (Boris Portnoy) (Everyday Coffee). The All Are Welcome group has become so popular that they have opened a new location in Thornbury.

The classic sourdough loaf is a must-have, but deciding between the sesame and honey braid, morning bun, and Portnoy's own Gianduja Babka Bun can be difficult. Although it's normal to feel anxious about making a choice, you shouldn't let that stop you from visiting All Are Welcome, widely regarded as one of Melbourne's finest bakeries.

Bread Club

This could be the only bakery that promotes its Soundcloud over its world-class pies and rotating sangas. Frenchmen Tim Beylie and Brice Antier have a royal pedigree between them (ex-Vue de Monde, Woodford Bakery and Baker D Chirico) but used it to birth an entirely new niche. 

Come for the delicious treats, and stay for the smooth beats. Sober up after Sunday bakery DJ sessions with cheese and bacon ‘fougasse’. A recent drive-by confirms their new Albert Park fit-out-out is nearly complete, with their signature sick mint green marble island.

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