Attica Summer Camp was one of the few bright spots in the pandemic, not least because of that dessert trolley. Drenched in nostalgia, the shiny four-wheeled table of dreams was overloaded with wobbling treats like a technicolour children’s book illustration. Word quickly spread: the trolley was the masterwork of pastry chef Rosemary Andrews.
Two years later, after some exhaustive searching and a mobbed single-day pop-up in June, Andrews is finally ready to open her own store near Malvern station from 10am this Saturday. Mietta by Rosemary is not named after another hospitality icon – now-closed CBD hotspot Mietta’s – but a loose interpretation of the two names: sweet little remembrance.
“I’m saying [it’s a] pop-up as I have signed a six-month lease and it’s a huge moment of change in my career,” Andrews tells Broadsheet. “It’s very much a make-or-break situation and I’ve got six months to see how it goes. My fingers are crossed and anything is possible!”
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Success is certainly on the cards, with signature layer cakes – including honey-misu cake, eight-layer carrot cake and a honey, espresso and dulce de leche cake – as well as baked cheesecakes, two-texture chocolate cakes, a Negroni chocolate tart and a classic lemon tart. A soft-serve machine will pump Gippsland Jersey milk ice-cream splashed with Valrhona chocolate sauce, while cookies and baked goods are also on the mood board.
In the savoury aisle, you’ll find Andrews’ fluffy Italian focaccia, which is the only offering that remains unchanged from Attica Summer Camp. Coffee from Market Lane and premium juices are available, with a handful of tables outside. “And unlike the last pop-up, I’ll be ready for the rush.”
The elegant Glenferrie Road space was inspired by Parisian patisseries, with touches of marble throughout. “The most notable feature is a wall with an array of porcelain flowers made in France, which is similar to my logo,” says Andrews. “By-the-slice and some whole cakes will be available in the counter … and next year, we will introduce whole cakes to order online.”
Born in Tassie, Andrews started baking with her grandmother at an early age before moving to Melbourne in 2012. She refined her skills at top kitchens such as Ezard, Tivoli Road Bakery, Hazel and Bistro Guillaume, with a stint in the UK staging at Restaurants Gordon Ramsay, The Ledbury and Dinner by Heston Blumenthal.
“My career goal was always to be a pastry chef and have my own business, doing what I love,” Andrews says. “One of the best feelings about being a pastry chef is seeing the joy you can bring to others.”