Becasse Bakery and Food on Five, Westfield Sydney

Last week, I gave you burger porn. This week, beautiful bakery porn.

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Custard choux bun; vanilla bean & passionfruit cheesecake; chestnut mont blanc; gateau Saint Honore

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Pear tart; eclairs

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Bovilian chocolate pot; carrot orange & sultana cake; pistachio & raspberry friand; strawberry & custard brioche

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Mille feuille; banana and salted peanut brittle tartlet; Zokoko chocolate jaffa tart; gateau opera; lemon tart

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Custard choux bun; Paris Brest; lemon tart

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Mille feuille; gateau Saint Honore

Desserts, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Zokoko chocolate jaffa tart; gateau opera

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Almond croissant; Danish sultana snail; mixed berry Danish, sugar bioche

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Quiche Lorraine; savoury muffin; ham & cheese croissant

Pastries, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Chocolate brioche; hazelnut & coffee Danish snail; pineapple & coconut muffin; Zokoko 68% chocolate muffin

Breads, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Pastry sugar twist; fruit loaf; brioche flower

Breads, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Brioche plait; brioche crown; brioche loaf

Breads, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Small sourdough baguette; soup roll; sourdough baguette; sourdough Vienna

Breads, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Pumpkin loaf; bacon & cheese epi

Breads, Becasse Bakery, Westfield Sydney

Wholemeal loaf; seven seed loaf

Becasse Bakery

Becasse Bakery, Level 5, Westfield Sydney

August 2012: Chef Justin North’s Becasse group of restaurants were placed under administration, resulting in the closure of all but Charlie & Co and Becasse Bakery – both of which were purchased by Jones the Grocer. Also see: Inside the death of a fine dine (Financial Review)

There were many highlights during our Sydney trip – our meal of a lifetime at Quay Restaurant; the kara age soft shell crab omelette at Cafe Ish I’d waited 18 months to taste; picking away at that massive tuna jaw at Izakaya Fujiyama; and the theatre and tenderness of Argentinean barbecue at Porteño, but believe it or not, one of my favourite places we went to in Sydney was a shopping centre.

The shiny new upmarket food court on Level 5 at Westfield Sydney was unveiled in late 2010 after a billion-dollar redevelopment that involved two years of construction.

Sitting right on the edge of the food court is chef-restaurateur Justin North’s spectacular Becasse Bakery, a glorious sight that awaits you as you step off the escalator. The low glass case is reminiscent of a jewellery cabinet, filled with edible gems – exquisite pastries and crusty artisanal breads that are baked daily.

We enjoyed a warm buttery ham and cheese croissant, almond croissant, chocolate brioche and the not-to-be-missed Becasse signature banana and salted peanut brittle tart.

The food court is huge and at the peak of lunch time the hungry hoards can be overwhelming. But there are plenty of dining options and lots of seating. While we were in Sydney, we visited level 5 at Westfield a few times. I had zero interest in the swanky boutiques on the lower floors, preferring to skip the shopping and jump straight to eating.

Food on Five (Level 5 at Westfield Sydney)

Food on Five (Level 5 at Westfield Sydney)

Ragu Pasta and Wine Bar‘s eye-catching display features fresh pasta, Italian small goods and an enormous wheel of Parmigiano Reggiano. Ragu’s menu features antipasto, an Italian regional cheese board, Italian appetisers, pasta dishes and Italian wines.

Ragu Pasta and Wine Bar

Ragu Pasta and Wine Bar – fresh pasta display

Ragu Pasta and Wine Bar - small goods and big cheese

Ragu Pasta and Wine Bar – small goods and big cheese

Snag Stand sells artisan butcher-made sausages and fifteen gourmet hot dogs with international flavours, including Toulouse pork sausage with truffle aioli, spicy chorizo with shredded Spanish goats cheese, bratwurst with sauteed onions and mild German mustard, and the classic American hot dog with a wood-smoked frankfurter, yellow mustard and tomato sauce.

Snag Stand

Snag Stand – gourmet hot dogs

I remember thinking what a great idea a gourmet hot dog stand was, and funnily enough, as revealed recently, someone in Perth had the very same thought.

Snag Stand hot dogs

Snag Stand gourmet hot dogs on display

At Via Del Corso you can get coffee, pastries, desserts and gelato. The macarons looked pretty good, though at AU$3.50 each are among the priciest I’ve seen.

Macarons, Via Del Corso

Macarons, Via Del Corso – AU$3.50, the priciest I’ve seen

If gelato in a cup isn’t fancy enough for you, indulge in something a little more elaborate, complete with cocktail umbrella.

Labelling the dessert display, Via Del Corso

Labelling the dessert display at Via Del Corso’s gelato bar

A fruit shop in a shopping centre food court? That’s Top Fruit. Fresh fruits are displayed and available for purchase – whole, in fruit salads, topped with creamy yoghurt or blended to order into refreshing drinks.

Top Juice

Fresh fruit display and freshly squeezed fruit juices, Top Fruit

Top Juice fruit salads and yoghurts

Top Fruit salads and yoghurts

Mick’s Bakehouse‘s meat pies are award-winning and come with an impressive and delectable range of fillings including Szechuan wagyu beef, Peking duck, Hungarian goulash, kangaroo and red wine, lamb shank, chicken with avocado and Brie and of course, plain beef.

Mick's Bakery pies

Pie by Mick’s Bakehouse – Michael Di Salvatore’s award-winning pies

Beef pie, Mick's Bakery

Juji and I share a snack – plain beef pie, Pie by Mick’s Bakehouse

Beef pie innards, Mick's Bakery

Beef pie innards, Pie by Mick’s Bakehouse

Chef Michael Moore’s Reuben & Moore specialises in New York-style deli sandwiches and hot roast rolls with meat cooked on the French rotisserie. You can get the world’s most famous sandwich – the Reuben, made with Blackmore’s wagyu salt beef, served on freshly baked rye bread that’s been sliced by hand, with Swiss cheese, homemade dill pickles, sauerkraut and mild mustard mayonnaise. If sandwiches aren’t your thing, get your roasted beef rump, crispy-skinned pork leg, ham on the bone or chilli lemon and parsley chicken on a plate with duck fat roasted potatoes and caramelised vegetables. Drooling yet?

Reuben & Moore

Reuben & Moore

Reuben & Moore

Reuben & Moore’s sandwiches and rolls have girls’ names

The sliced meat looks amazing but check out the sandwiches being prepared

In Sassy’s Red, chef Simon Goh has created a stylish yet nostalgic kopi tiam (coffee shop) right in the heart of the food court, serving up authentic Malaysian dishes including nasi lemak, chicken rice, assam laksa, curry laksa, bubur cha cha and cendol.

If you prefer restaurant dining, Simon’s Chinta Ria… Mood for Love is upstairs on Level 6. I had dinner at Chinta Ria on my short trip to Sydney in March – there’ll be a write-up on that meal soon. Three words: durian panna cotta.

Sassy's Red

Sassy’s Red

Sassy's Red

A colourful display of sauce bottles and photographs of lovely ladies on the walls at Sassy’s Red

Dessert and drinks menu and sugar cane drink, Sassy's Red

Drinks menu and sugar cane drink, Sassy’s Red

We order sugar cane juice and share a roti canai.

Roti canai, Sassy's Red

Roti canai, Sassy’s Red

The crisp flaky housemade roti is served with a flavoursome chicken curry gravy. It’s great for dipping and drinking.

Roti canai, Sassy's Red

Roti canai, Sassy’s Red

August 2012: Chef Justin North’s Becasse group of restaurants were placed under administration, resulting in the closure of all but Charlie & Co and Becasse Bakery – both of which were purchased by Jones the Grocer. Also see: Inside the death of a fine dine (Financial Review)

Becasse Bakery is just one of several Justin North eateries at Westfield Sydney. Charlie & Co. is his burger bar.

Who’s Charlie? In American hamburger history, the legend goes that Charlie Nagreen of Wisconsin set up a stand to sell meatballs at the county fair. Business wasn’t so good and Charlie soon realised meatballs were too difficult to for patrons to eat as they walked around the fair. In a flash of inspiration, he squashed the meatballs and served them between two slices of bread, calling this creation a hamburger. The new portable snack was a big hit and Charlie sold hamburgers at subsequent fairs, earning the nickname “Hamburger Charlie”.

The “Co.” in Charlie & Co.’s name represents all the local producers behind the premium ingredients brought together to create Charlie & Co.’s juicy burgers. The burger buns are baked daily at Becasse Bakery.

Charlie & Co

Charlie & Co

I order the Classic Fried Chicken burger (AU$16), with a crispy crumbed chicken breast fillet, shredded iceberg lettuce, tomato and lashings of herb and garlic mayonnaise.

Charlie & Co

Chicken burger, truffle and parmesan fries, Charlie & Co

At AU$8, the truffle and parmesan fries are not cheap, but I can’t resist (I’m on holiday, after all). They are fresh and crunchy with a strong truffle flavour. Less decadent plain fries (AU$6) are also available.

Truffle and parmesan fries, Charlie & Co

Truffle and parmesan fries, Charlie & Co

While I’m at Charlie & Co. getting my burger, Juji and Jay grab pork and pineapple tacos from Guzman Y Gomez, with soft corn tortillas, black beans and salsa. On the side, chopped red onion, jalapenos and El Yucateco green habanero sauce for extra kick.

Tacos, Guzman y Gomez

Tacos, Guzman y Gomez

With the continuing rise of Mexican eateries around the nation, Australians are getting used to tasty authentic Mexican food that’s not necessarily laden with cheese. There’s definitely a lot more to Mexican food than those Old El Paso taco kits. The upcoming final post in this Sydney series features El Loco in Surry Hills.

Perth Mexican food lovers, Guzman Y Gomez is expanding into Western Australia later this year (no details yet on specific location).

Tacos, Guzman y Gomez

Tacos, Guzman y Gomez

If you find the queue at Din Tai Fung World Square intolerably long, maybe try your luck at Din Tai Fung Westfield Sydney (the other DTF location is The Star casino). Here, there’s a slightly less imposing queue at peak meal times. It’s not the full Din Tai Fung experience you get at World Square, but there’s dumpling live theatre to enjoy while you wait for your food. The famous xiao long bao (soup dumplings) are available, as are my beloved green beans wok-fried with spicy pork mince, other steamed dumplings and buns, noodle soups and stir-fries.

Din Tai Fung staff, Westfield Sydney

Din Tai Fung staff, Westfield Sydney

With a burger and truffled fries to get through, I have no room for dumplings – but I do get an icy lychee mint juice to complete my lunch combo.

Lychee mint ice drink, Din Tai Fung

Lychee mint ice drink, Din Tai Fung

This blog post has featured just some of the eateries available at Food on Five.

If you’d like to escape the food court crowd, up on Level 6 are restaurants: Chat Thai, Chinta Ria…Mood for Love (Malaysian), Sky Phoenix (Chinese – dim sum and a la carte), Xanthi (Greek), Max Brenner’s chocolate bar, and Northern Italian Spiedo Restaurant and Bar, where we enjoyed dinner on our first night in Sydney.

I know, I know – I’m talking about a food court and restaurants at a shopping centre – I probably sound like a gawking tourist. But there’s plenty of fun and good eating here, more to discover the next time I visit Sydney. I’m envious of the city office workers who can go to Westfield Sydney every day for lunch. Xiao long bao between meetings? Oh yes, please.

Westfield Sydney CBD

Westfield Sydney CBD

Westfield Sydney Food on Five
Pitt Street, Sydney NSW 2000

Opening hours*
Monday to Wednesday 9.30am to 6.30pm
Thursday 9.30am to 9pm
Friday to Saturday 9.30am to 8pm
Sunday 9.30am to 6.30pm
*Individual eatery opening hours may vary


Click for larger map

My Sydney trip (2011)

I went to Sydney with my sister Juji and her fiancé Jay in November 2011. Jac joined us for the final weekend of the trip. See the list of posts so far, in reading order. We’re getting closer to the end of the series… just one more food post to come.

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