If you don’t have the time, or can’t be bothered to drag yourself out to the South Melbourne Market, Agathe Patisserie now has a store in the Royal Arcade in Melbourne’s CBD. Called Agathe Patisserie Petite, it is quite literally a hole-in-the-wall shop, tucked in under a staircase.
There is a little sign above the counter, and between that and the intermittently forming line of customers in front of it, you might just be able to locate it.
We were on our way to another meal when we were last in the vicinity of the South Melbourne Market (likely at Chez Dre or Bibelot), so hadn’t gotten pastries from the Agathe Patisserie stall there, though we had gone past it and eyed the croissants and tarts. This was much more accessible, and we weren’t going to miss out on trying their wares again.
Agathe Patisserie Petite is fronted by a glass cabinet displaying their available wares. They had a good selection on the day we visited, including different types of croissants, pain au chocolat, madeleines, and canneles. They all looked tempting, but after much deliberation, we decided on a pandan croissant and a matcha croissant.
Both croissants were beautifully laminated, oven-browned, and with a glossy sheen on the outside. They were certainly very photogenic.
The pandan croissant was easy to identify, with a bright green glaze drizzled in zig zags across the top of it. When bitten into, we found the inside of the croissant to also be a striking green. The pastry had good, honeycombed air pockets. It had a soft texture rather than a brittle, crisp crunch though. The pandan flavour was really delivered by the glaze. It was sweet, and had that fragrant, leafy note. When had without the glaze, the croissant pastry didn’t have a particular flavour of its own.
The matcha croissant was described on its label as having Japanese green tea, almond paste, and red bean. It looked like an ordinary croissant from the outside, but again, when bitten into had a green hue, this one more of a mossy, muted shade. It had those fluffy air pockets again, but similar to the other croissant was missing a crispy shatter, and had a soft doughy pull instead. There was perhaps a faint green tea flavour to it, in the afternote, but it wasn’t very distinctive. In the centre of it was the promised red bean paste, not too dense and not too sweetened. While it was a quite classical pairing of flavours on paper, it didn’t deliver on matcha or green tea, so left us underwhelmed.
Agathe Patisserie Petite’s goods are certainly appealing to the eye, but didn’t deliver the croissant texture we had hoped for, or all the flavours. On the plus side, it is much more easily accessible for those who live and work in the city than other options. If one has the ability to travel though, Lune Croissanterie still trumps it.
Price point: Croissants $8 each.
Value: Uncertain, compared to what other croissanteries offer. Convenience may factor in though.
Address: Shop 49A, Royal Arcade, 335 Bourke Street, Melbourne CBD
Phone: 0403 222 573
Website: Agathe Patisserie