Ah, Sydney! A city that knows how to dazzle with its stunning harbour views, famous landmarks, and a food scene that’s as diverse as it is delicious. But for me, there was one quest that stood above the rest — the quest for the ultimate croissant.
Armed with an insatiable curiosity and an unapologetic passion for anything flaky and buttery, I set out on a mouthwatering mission to uncover the very best croissants that Sydney has to offer.
Here are my top picks for Sydney’s best croissants to rip open.
Everyone has their local bakery. It’s usually right around the corner from your home. Mine just so happens to be the best croissant in Sydney. Identifiable by croissant-shaped neon light and a line of locals on Saturday mornings, Crescent is a pocket-sized hole-in-the-wall serving flaky, buttery pastries. There’s enough room for one or two people at a time to peruse the glass case of the day’s options, which usually include a classic croissant, ham and cheese, and pain au chocolate, baked fresh daily. They also serve yuzu palmier, twists stuffed with chorizo, cinnamon treats, and much more. If you’re a fan of Lune croissants, you’ll be more than happy with Crescent’s flaky pastries.
For those who say there’s nothing in the North Shore, I present to you Loulou. Hiding in a corner spot in Milsons Point, Loulou encompasses a bistro, a traiteur slinging terrines and rolls to take home, and a boulangerie, baking fresh pastries four times a day. Among the irresistible cakes and baguettes are some of the best croissants Sydney has to offer. They’re classic French with a crispy, crunchy outer shell and a soft, stringy centre that is oh-so-satisfying to pull apart. Pull up a chair outside or take it home; either way, the croissants at Loulou are just one of the many reasons to make a trip across the bridge. If I might add, try one of the tarts or the basque cheesecake. it’s the perfect treat to pick up on the way to a dinner party.
Slink upstairs to this California-inspired rooftop bakery above the Paramount House Hotel and be greeted with a shelf of tempting pastries. Although, the one you’re looking for is a buttermilk croissant. It’s flaky, soft and chewy inside. You can get them in different flavours, including pain au chocolate, ham and gruyere, hazelnut and chocolate praline or a spicy, tasty Aleppo pepper and Asiago cheese scroll. They sometimes have daily specials, like macadamia, honey and thyme croissant. It’s a great spot to soak up a sunny morning with a croissant and coffee. For my gluten-free friends, they do an equally delicious buckwheat croissant.
Where have you been if you don’t know about the skinny pink bakery in Surry Hills that goes by the name of Lode? In all seriousness, Lode is the bakery of the year thanks to its fine dining-esque pastries. Although, that’s not why I love them. Yes, having pretty pastries is nice, but it all comes down to the flavour. After all, if you’re paying upwards of $10 for a pastry, it has to be good.
The croissants here, whether piped with chocolate and hazelnut cream, yuzu curd, or stuffed with ham and cheese, are well worth the price tag. The inside has that classic honeycomb pattern, filled with the right amount of air to make it pillowy, but with a crusty outer shell for that satisfying crunch. You don’t even have to go to Surry Hills anymore, as they’ve opened another location in Circular Quay. The yuzu curd is my go-to when I’m in the office, battling the 3 p.m. slump.
Banksia Bakehouse is also the team behind my favourite New York-style cookies, Thicc Cookies. The pastries and cakes are all lined up neatly in a three-metre-long glass case and are almost impossible to resist. But if you’re in the mood for something flaky and buttery, the croissants are just as good as everything else. Indulgence is the key here. You won’t just find a plain old croissant. There are some stuffed with Biscoff, others lemon meringue and my favourite, a gooey, decadent croque monsieur croissant with bechamel. They seem to have a special every month, too, like the Big Breakfast Danish or a collaboration with another food or drink brand.
Boon Cafe is part cafe, part grocery store, and part restaurant. You can pick up Thai-imported goods, rice bowls for lunch, and a sweet, oozing pandan croissant. Its bright green pandan filling almost looks fake, but when spread on a warm, flaky croissant, it becomes a sweet treat too good to resist. Boon is a lover of croissants. If you order the beef massaman curry, you don’t get a bowl of rice; you get a croissant smashed to paper thin and toasted. Please don’t knock it until you try; it’s pretty good.