Every day you'll find freshly baked breads, pastries and cakes at L'oven Craft Bakery's stores across Sydney, in Haymarket, Burwood, Ashfield, Liverpool, Merrylands and Castle Hill.
This pan-Asian bakery offers a variety of classic goodies (Taiwanese, Japanese, Korean and more) as well as some innovative creations we've not often seen elsewhere, all at exceptionally affordable prices.
L'oven invited us into their Burwood store to try a selection of items, all freshly baked that morning and set out in the familiar self-serve setting where you grab a tray and some tongs and choose yourself a selection from the windows before paying at the counter.
The front window catches your attention with a colourful array of cakes with flavours like Oreo Chocolate Cake ($25), Passionfruit Mousse ($28) and Pandan Swiss Rolls ($7.50). Then there is a huge range of savoury pastries, sweets, rolls, biscuits and desserts inside the store.
For $2.60 a Bacon and Cheese Bun is a steal, as is the Corn and Ham Bun for $2.40. The BBQ Pork Bun is a best-seller and unsurprisingly so; the little hole at the top lets you peek at the tempting pork insides which we confirm are delicious ($2.40).
Another best-seller, the Sesame Chicken Burger ($3), is a folded over sesame bun with a filling of creamy chicken and crunchy slaw. Be sure to bring napkins to mop up the sauce and grease when you're done with this one.
Adding oomph to a regular cheese stick, the Wholemeal Mushroom Stick ($2.50) is a long, slim, tender breadstick (slightly wider than the plain cheese stick) topped with sliced mushrooms and cheese in a nice balance of flavours (ie. it's still cheesey).
A small loaf of Wholemeal French Walnut ($3) is slightly sweet and much softer than it looks, though slices easily and is delicious served simply with a little butter.
There's a selection of croissants including Plain ($2.60), Almond ($3.20) and Chocolate ($3.20). Don't expect the crispy, flaky French style, these are made somewhat differently and hold up in their own right. They are soft, light and sweet with a gentle glaze and exceptionally well priced. We'd say stick to the plain as the almond is less of its characteristic indulgence at L'oven and more like a plain croissant with a light almond topping. Still tasty but not wildly different to its plain counterpart - though this is likely a positive feature to some customers.
One of the most interesting pastries we sampled is the Red Bean Mochi, a bun filled with red bean (which we love) and sticky mochi in the centre, and with crunchy pumpkin seeds added to the dough ($2.60). It's not super sweet at all and comes in a rather generous portion we recommend sharing.
Somewhat similar but simpler is the Peanut Sticky Rice bun, where the soft peanut filling is encased in a plain bun ($2.50). Definitely one for the peanut butter fans, this one is yum heated up slightly as well as at room temperature.
At the counter while paying for your items, just try to resist the bargain Egg Tarts ($1.20) or Coconut Tarts ($1.90). The coconut one is dense and sweet, and the egg tart a satisfying rendition of a classic sweet. You might recognise the filling as similar to the egg tarts served at yum cha restaurants; the pastry is more of a shortcrust style rather than the flakier pastry common to yum cha joints in Sydney, which can sometimes be a little overpowering. Yum. A box of these would be a most welcome addition to your next morning tea.
Why not bring your own container to help reduce the use of single use plastic bags? Particularly if buying multiple items, as they tend to be packaged separately. The staff are happy to oblige and here at Sydney Scoop we love when people take small steps to help reduce our impact on the environment.
L'oven Craft Bakery has multiple stores around Sydney. Find them at Haymarket, Burwood, Ashfield, Liverpool, Merrylands and Castle Hill, and keep an eye on their Facebook or Instagram pages for updates.