The word “manis” means “sweet” in Indonesian, Safril Angga Saputra’s native tongue – and even the air smells sweet inside his patisserie, Manis.

Saputra is the head baker and co-owner, along with his business partners Thaufik Probowasito, Rizky Venni and Nurhayati A Roi. He cut his teeth at Britomart’s Amano, where he was a baker for nearly eight years, and says he’s long dreamt of blending his Indonesian culture with his talent for the art of French viennoiserie.

You can see this in sweets such as the pie susu, a creamy Balinese milk tart reminiscent of a custard square. The nostalgic coffee bun (also known in some Asian countries as kopi roti or rotiboy) is a textural sensation, with a light milk bun encased in a sweet, crunchy coffee shell.

Manis also serves martabak – a thick, doughy pancake that’s a popular street food dish in Indonesia. Martabak can be made sweet or savoury, and Saputra and his team do both versions as limited weekly specials, advertising when they’re available on the Manis Bakery Instagram. Manis caters to its Muslim-Indonesian customers by using only locally sourced halal meats in all its savoury pastries and cabinet food.

These include an array of croissants – the cheesy beef salami flavour has an optional honey-soy dressing that you inject into the centre of the pastry like some kind of culinary scientist. There’s also a pain au pesto version, a matcha croissant and a pistachio flavour with a not-too-sweet creamy filling that hits just right.

The space is light and bright with a scattering of low, pale pink stools and an outdoor area shielded by glass screens. Sit in and you can have your pastry with a coffee (made from Espresso Workshop beans) while you watch the bakers at work in the open kitchen.

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Updated: January 31st, 2023

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