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It was a happy day when I discovered a little slice of gelati heaven called MaPo. What was less happy was the fact that this discovered occurred approximately a week before lockdown started. And whilst MaPo stayed open throughout those dark months, I unfortunately did not live within 5km, or even 10km, and hence was forced to be MaPo-less for the entire time. But now that we’re all vaccinated and out and about, I was back at MaPo in a flash, ready to get all those gelato fixes I was denied for so long. And yes, you can consider this a spoiler to what I think of MaPo.

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RivaReno Gelato

There’s a pretty great story behind how I wound up at Rivareno Gelato. Three years ago when I was getting ready to move from Melbourne to Sydney, I decided to hit up my favourite denim store to stock up on jeans. And whilst waiting in line to get into said store, I got into a conversation with a lovely lass from Sydney. Of course, the topic of food came up, and because we were just down the road from Gelato Messina, talk quickly turned to desserts of the frozen variety. To my intense shock, my new friend confessed that she actually has a gelateria she loves even more than Messina, and that’s Rivareno. She then went on to describe some…

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Lockdown Special no. 2 – Black Star Pastry

In the midst of lockdown, I finally closed the book on 4 years of medical school with a brutal slew of 5 exams over 5 days. Normally this would be a cause to celebrate with several fancy meals with several of my favourite people, but that was unfortunately unable to happen for obvious reasons. But you know what? Things weren’t actually all that bad. In addition to a whole bunch of self-indulgent online shopping, I was also sent piles of goodies from my nearest and dearest, including the All Star Tasting Box ($55) from my family, consisting of the 6 best-selling cakes from the famous Black Star Pastry. They sure know the way to my heart.

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Old Garden Kaffe

I’d like to think of myself as too old and too world-weary to be sucked in by Instagram-worthy food. After all, I’ve been burned before by restaurants that proffer up food that looks good, but doesn’t do much else. Except as it turns out, I’m not quite as dead inside as I thought, because when photos like this started popping up on my Instagram feed, I was sucked in, hook, line, and sinker. Old School Ka-Fey, recently re-branded as Old Garden Kaffee, is currently the hottest (or is that the coldest) place to get your dessert on. For those of you familiar with Asian dessert cafes, the offerings are Old Garden are pretty typical. Think giant slabs of buttered brioche…

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Pidapipo CBD

I had promised my sister a pasta-and-gelato date for the next time I came back down to Melbourne, and despite minor shenanigans in the form of a last-minute search for a restaurant that was actually open, the first part of the operation was carried off without a hitch. After wandering around for a couple hours, digesting the ridiculous amounts of carbs we ingested, we hit up Pidapipo for our gelato fix. I had first come across Pidapipo a couple years ago, when they only had their flagship Carlton store. The deliciousness of their gelato, the hazelnut flavour especially, absolutely blew my mind. Unfortunately Carlton is just out of the way enough for me to not be able to frequent it…

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Daniel’s Donuts

I’ve never been a big fan of donuts (though I do like them – I’m not crazy), but the hype around Daniel’s Donuts has been so big over the last year that I had to go and check it out. Everyone from mum’s co-workers to Chris’ co-workers has been banging on about how they’re the best donuts they’ve ever had, and combined with the fact that my sister was dying to visit, and that it’s actually near-ish to home, prompted a drive down to Springvale one afternoon while I was in Melbourne.

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