I Heart Brownies, purveyor of Brisbane’s go-to gluten-free brownies, will next week open a new bakery and cafe in Bowen Hills. It will replace owner Lulu Purnell’s original space in Bakery Lane in the Valley, which closes this Saturday.
The new outlet is shifting into the former premises of snack bar deStresso, a handsome, bull-nosed shopfront overlooking the intersection of Hamilton Place and Campbell Street. The fit-out will continue the original store’s love of bold colours, with Palm Springs-pink and red walls adorned in ’70s-style stripes. Outside, a red lip wall and a three-metre-high heart wall are designed specifically for Instagrammers.
“It’s a lot more accessible for customers with much better parking,” Purnell says. “We’ve revamped the building. It’s pretty lovely now; a beautiful old shop … We’ve just outgrown Bakery Lane by leaps and bounds,” Purnell says. “It’s really difficult to work from here now.”
Right now it’s a slightly unusual location, but the new shop’s much larger kitchen will allow I Heart Brownies to up its output from 10,000 brownies a week to something closer to 40,000. Purnell also has her eye on the foot traffic that streams past each day from Bowen Hills train station (“We’ll have a bit of seating inside and out, but I think most people will be taking away.”) and the proposed redevelopment of the News Corp site diagonally across the intersection.
“That will happen in the next five years, a great big residential and office block development,” she says. “So there’s a lot going on around here right now.”
The cafe and bakery will be serving its signature freshly baked gluten-free brownies in 12 different flavours. Beyond brownies, I Heart Brownies will serve Merlo coffee, milkshakes, blue and pink lemonade mocktails, and ice-cream sandwiches and sundaes made from I Heart’s own hand-churned ice-cream, which includes a vegan option.