yes, we know sugar’s no good for us but sometimes you can’t resist a little something. For those of us with a sweet tooth, Preston Central’s got plenty of little somethings to choose from.
If you’re after a traditional Aussie treat, head to The Old Fire Station café and shout yourself a nice slice. Honestly, this place must have the best slices in town – chocolate brownie slices, lemon slices, apple crumble slices, all generously, er, sliced. And they have Australia’s country favourite – vanilla slice. Yum.
While on High St, why not go for something different? Shahni Kwality Indian Sweets (also a restaurant) offers all the tooth-tingling sugar hits you can take. It’s worth buying one of each just so you can say the names: Gulab Jamun (the round golden ones dripping with syrup), Rasqulla, Jalebi (the saffron flavoured curly ones), Pateesa, Molichoor, Laddu, Rasmalai, Rabri, Coconut Burfi,, Kheer, Besan Barfi (made with condensed milk, flour and cream), multi-coloured Chum Chums and Doodh. Who wouldn’t want to try a sweet called Doodh?
Café L’Après-Midi on High St, has one of those windows you stop to photograph – full of a variety of beautiful colourful cakes. Don’t forget Preston’s favourite Greek coffee shop – Café Achilleon, specialising in the best of Greek honeyed goodness. How about amazing bits of cakey goodness like puffed honeyed loukoumades, walnut-filled kourabiedes, galaktoboureko (milk pie), or delicious Greek Easter specials, melomakarona, sticky with honey and spiced with cinnamon?
Speaking of things dripping honey and syrup, a bit further south you will find Abla’s Lebanese Patisserie, proudly enjoying their reputation for making the best Lebanese baklava in Melbourne, even winning the Victorian Baklava Bake Off.
If you’re in the Market and in the market for something sugary, Melba Coffee and Tea does something called a ‘cronut’ – a cross between a doughnut and a croissant. They look like half of a fat doughnut filled with stuff, like custard or fruit. Oh my. You can get Dutch pancakes at Ditzi Dani’s, or for a sweet drink you won’t find anywhere else on this side of town, you can enjoy freshly squeezed sugar cane juice at Monkey Cane.
Try The Local Pantry for humbugs – those striped boiled lollies popular a century ago, made at Sovereign Hill.
Speaking of tradition, it will be a fine day when we can buy bee stings in Melbourne! If you’ve never had the pleasure, a bee sting is the love child of a sweet bread roll and a doughnut, introduced to Australia by German immigrants. Made with a briochey kind of yeast dough, filled with a rich vanilla custard crème and varnished with a baked almond glaze full of sliced almonds, bee stings (Bienenstichs) are everything a cake should be. Sadly, you’re forced go to country towns like Yea or Seymour or Echuca to find one. If any bakers in the ‘hood are reading this and want to be first and only place to offer bee stings in Melbourne, act now. Pretty please… With sugar on top.