Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Yiannis Pantheon Cakes, Coburg by Big Fil

One of the issues I have with the so-called ‘Greek’ precinct in the city is it doesn’t have any real connection with anyone of Greek background I know or work with. It’s kind of the same with Lygon street – yes, it’s full of Italian Restaurants but it hardly feels like the centre of a living Italian community in Melbourne, more a place for interstate visitors. Possibly both these areas were once hubs for a transported European life but it definitely feels like their time has passed. I suppose this is a fairly longwinded way of getting to the point I actually want to make, that Yannis Pantheon Cakes is the sort of place patronised by people born in the old country and not just people searching for Greek sweets and cakes.

While fairly early in the morning the cafe was almost empty, when I've walked past around lunchtime this cafe has been almost full. It’s obviously a place where regulars go to catch up with friends, sitting around drinking coffee with their cake or biscuit. Admittedly mainly men seem to visit here but not exclusively so and it isn’t as cliquey or intimidating as a lot of other similar coffee and cake places, definitely much more public cafe than members club in feel.

Some of the cakes behind the counter looked seriously good, and on a Sunday morning visit it took us a few minutes to settle on an almond biscuit, a chocolate and vanilla cannoli and a YoYo cake. Neither Snooze nor myself are generally fans of cannoli but our experience here could have made me change my mind. A light, crispy shell with a creamy but not overly heavy filling, a perfect companion to our hot chocolates.

At least I thought it was the perfect companion until we tried the almond biscuits. Crunchy exterior, soft and a little chewy in the middle, texture wise it’s reminiscent of a larger version of a macaron. A very different taste though, less sweet and more savoury with an almond flakes exterior wrapped around an almond meal interior.

The one cake I was indifferent about was the Yoyo. These come with a chocolate topping over a what is like a denser sponge cake which includes a small amount of custard. The version here was nice but not ‘knock-my-socks-off’ good like the biscuit or cannoli.

I like it. It has that local hero sort of feel to it, somewhere key to the community but not necessarily known outside it. A pleasant place to eat and certainly cheaper than we'd expected, it’s definitely on my list for visitors wanting to see a different side of Melbourne than the usual inner suburbs vista.

Food – 8
Service – 6.5
Ambience – 6.5
Price – 8

425A Sydney Road
Coburg VIC 3058
Tel: (03) 9354 8448

1 comment:

RMIT Newintstudents said...

wow.look at all the cakes. will have to try one day.

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