A1 bakery

Posted on September 30, 2010


I’ve never been a fan of baklava. For those of you scratching your heads over what baklava is…it’s a middle eastern dessert where layers of filo pastry are filled with ground pistachios and sweetened with a syrup (sometimes honey). It’s served in a few different forms, including little rolls or in diamond cuts and can be found in many Greek/Lebanese/Turkish bakeries.

Back to my story about how I didn’t like baklava, I blame it on a particularly bad experience with one when I was younger. In that day and age, little ol’ me did not know any better what about constituted a good or bad baklava. I ate a bad one and thought that was just how they were: soggy, overly sweet pastry with bits of pistachios in between. Not a pleasant feeling in the mouth at all.

Then came A1 bakery (645 Sydney Road, Brunswick VIC), a Lebanese bakery/small grocery store. They had trays and trays of baklava on display and the pastry looked…really crisp and inviting. Completely different from the soggy one I had years and years ago…I HAD to try it out. It was pure bliss, crispy sweet pastry encased a yummy nutty filling. It’s hard to describe just how good it is, but believe me, it was tasty! I was reformed, baklava fan I now am.

That’s not the only thing A1 has got going for them, they also do an array of yummy savory pastries filled with things such as mince lamb, spinach and fetta, among others as well. They are also very well priced. A dozen savory pastries will set you back only $7, baklava is $1 per piece (and the girl serving was uber nice and gave me an extra bit for no extra charge) and decent coffee for only $2.50, WHERE can you find good coffee for under $3 these days?

In terms of decor, it’s a little daggy, very Brunswick in the sense that’s it’s a bit grungy and rough around the edges. But don’t discount it, the food is pretty top quality in my books. And for those kind of prices, you’d be silly not to try it!

Note: For once that photo above was not taken by yours truly, it’s courtesy of Melissa Hom and found on this site: http://newyork.grubstreet.com/2007/08/riding_the_b_line_baklava_like.html