27th November 2017
119 Rose St
Fitzroy, VIC 3065
I have another foodie confession to make – I don’t like croissants. I mean, I don’t specifically dislike them, but if you stick a pastry crescent in front of me, I can take it or leave it. As far as I’m concerned, flaky and buttery alone are not enough to get me excited. Yet, I found myself crawling out of bed at 8am on my day off for the sole purpose of going halfway across town to Lune Croissanterie. Thankfully we are no longer in the days where you had to line up pre-dawn (and maybe cobble a few people with your elbows) in order to nab a croissant before they sell out.
Before you peg me for a croissant-lover in denial however, consider this: Lune has been endorsed as having the best croissants in the world, by The New York Times no less. So despite finding croissants largely unexciting, I felt like I owed the bakery a visit before I leave Melbourne in a couple months’ time.
Luckily for me, Lune has more than just croissants going on. In the glass cube of a kitchen in the centre of a monolithic warehouse in the backstreets of Fitzroy (I know, how Melbourne can you get??), the talented pastry chefs spin out everything from danishes to cruffins, as well as one-of-a-kind croissants topped with combinations such as sesame and halva, or coconut and pandan. If you want details, you can either check their website, or walk straight up to the counter, where the daily creations are displayed in a tantalising line-up, and removed as they are sold out.
It would’ve felt wrong to come to a croissanterie and not try the original Croissant ($5.5), so I nabbed one to share with K. As the exterior flaked away in parchment-brittle shards, it revealed a luxuriously golden interior and layers of feathery, buttery pastry. It is incredibly rich, continuously tempting you back for another bite between sips of a bracingly strong Flat White ($4). I’ll admit that I still don’t understand the hype, but objectively speaking, this croissant really is something special. At any rate, K certainly thought it was the best croissant he’d ever eaten.
My indifference for croissants weaken when it comes to the Almond Croissant ($8.5), which is the one kind that I actually adore. And frankly, I could eat the version at Lune every day for breakfast. The flakes of roasted almond are placed so densely that the croissant is constantly at risk of tipping over, even with the addition of a layer of floral almond frangipane in the middle of the pastry to weigh it down. As expected, it is incredibly rich and probably better to share between two, but you’ll certainly want to scoff this all by yourself.
A special they had on the day of our visit was the MÖRK Hot Chocolate and Hazelnut ($11). Instead of almond flakes and frangipane, this one was stuffed with chocolate frangipane and almond praline, and then topped with crystallised hazelnuts. This one is seriously not for the faint of heart, and I was well and truly buttered out after I had finished sharing this one with K.
Despite being almost sick with butter by this point, neither of us could resist getting a few more items to take home. We had probably collectively spent almost $80 on pastries by that point, though apparently that’s far from the record – I was told by the bloke serving me that apparently the record was $300 for one person! And although I’ll always prefer savouries over sweets, this amount of butter and sugar, used with this much skill and innovation, is really hard to resist.
Rating: 15/20 – mooning over croissants.
This rating reflects my personal experience at the time of visit.