Remember those old cookbooks that your Mother and Grandmother had lying around in the kitchen? The kind that included nostalgia inducing recipes for a Classic Victoria Sponge, Strawberry and Cream Gâteau or Butter Cake? I remember one in particular that carried the simple title “The Best of Baking” by Hamlyn publications. I would so often flick through these pages in the kitchen, wondering which delicious cake or biscuits my Mum would bake next.
Walking into Beatrix brought back those memories. The first thing you notice are the copious number of old school whisks hanging against the wall and of course, the mouthwatering display of giant cakes, slices and biscuits. Natalie Paull, the owner and pastry-chef of the cafe, has brought back these once loved, old fashioned classics and continuously puts her own inventive, modern spin on them. Having previously worked for Australian cooking icon Maggie Beer, we can spot an homage to some true house-made Aussie favourites such as fresh lamingtons, Monte Carlo biscuits and one of Beatrix’s best sellers the “Calamity Jane”, an inventive take on the wagon wheel.
As well as the homegrown classics, there are also plenty of US inspired desserts - red velvet and peanut butter lovers will not be disappointed! The cafe is also known for its show stopping Chiffon Cake. This extremely light and airy cake is said to be invented in the 1920s by a Californian insurance salesman who went by the name of Harry Baker.
Beatrix is a small, cosy space that also offers ciabatta sandwiches for those feeling peckish and Allpress coffee for those who need a pick-me-up.
Side note: If you ever want to reignite that nostalgia and find cookbooks just like the one discussed above, check out one of our favourite Melbourne bookstores, Books for Cooks, located on Gertrude street in Fitzroy.
688 Queensberry Street, North Melbourne