The world walks by as one sips lattes and nibbles pastries at this little cafe at the “Paris end” of Melbourne’s CBD.
Savez-vous garder un secret? Located at the upper-east end of the CBD, there is a little hidden cafe. Hidden is in fact, an understatement. We must have walked past it a thousand times in the last few months without even realising its existence. Have you seen it, readers? Its presence is announced only by a wooden sign board painted with little girl suspended above eye-level. If you approach from the east heading westwards though, you will see a mural of a brooding old man. Inside, it’s a tight little space split into two areas. The first area houses the cafe’s kitchen and coffee-making unit (as well as a counter stocked with a small variety of French-style pastries). The second area is simply furnished, as a French country cottage belonging to an old grand mère.
Why do we feature Le Petite Bourke, you ask? Les croissants ($4.50 each) et les tartes aux poire ($7.50 each), mes amis. A morning wake-up call does not come better than the flaky croissants here, larger than your face and available in plain or dusted with icing sugar and slivered almonds. Dip it into your bol du cafe for a truly authentic experience. And mes amis, if you are not croissant-fans, then make sure you grab the pear frangipane tart. The pastry base is shortbread in taste and texture, with a thin fig/date layer at the bottom. It encloses a frangipane cake-base of such flavour and softness — we really ought to stop gushing, it’s most unbecoming. Just order it.
Short and sweet, good things come in small packages, a thousand cliches blah blah. Yet, it’s all proven true at Le Petite Bourke. Make it your morning coffee and continental European breakfast stop, and/or a sweet afternoon nibble. N’en parle à personne.
- Dessert adventure checklist
- Dessert destination: Le Petite Bourke Cafe, 24 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne CBD, Vic 3000.
- Budget: $.
- Sweet irresistibles: Cafe dessert or breakfast dessert.
- Must-eat: The Pear Frangipane Tart.
- The short and sweet story: The world walks by as one sips lattes and nibbles pastries at this little cafe at the “Paris end” of Melbourne’s CBD.