Lea Chairesa can trace her interest in food back to her childhood in Indonesia. It’s an interest she reconnected with after high school in Sydney when she went on to work in a number of restaurants and patisseries across the city, including Cirrus Dining, KOI Dessert Bar and Black Star Pastry. All the while, she dreamed of opening her own place.
Enter Mascavado. The patisserie opened on Hutt Street in 2020.The Sans-Arc Studio fit-out is clean and simple, with a handful of benches inside and a terrazzo countertop displaying pastries, cakes and tarts.
The menu changes daily, with the exception of a few staples. There are croissants (plain and chocolate), cinnamon scrolls, whisky-and-almond knots, a mascarpone-and-Moscato choux, flourless brownies and chai blondies (a white chocolate-based brownie with spices). Fruit danishes include plum and rose; pear and ginger; and mixed berry and rosemary. The Miso cookies are always bestsellers, too.
Tarts (past flavours include lemon, strawberry and apple and ginger) round out the sweet offerings. Savoury options include three-cheese toasties, sandwiches and ham and cheese croissants. When Broadsheet visited, there were quiches filled with porcini mushrooms recently foraged by the head barista.
Chairesa likes to keep pastries simple and local. Almost all ingredients used at the patisserie are sourced locally, including flour from Flinders Ranges Premium Grain. The coffee is from Elementary, and Chairesa regularly makes trips to the Adelaide Central Market for ingredients, too.