We've got some amazing bakery customers - they use our olives, salt, grains and even pulse flours for a huge range delicious products. Easter is the time of year we get especially excited about what they do though and that's for one (very good) reason, HOT CROSS BUNS!
So here it is, our staff picks for the best Hot Cross Buns in Melbourne and beyond.
Sara Shepard (National Sales Manager) - Q le Baker
Sara said - "Quentin is my favourite frenchman - If I'm in South Yarra, I'm going to Q le Baker"
From Q le Baker:
"We get the organic fruit for our Hot Cross Buns from Murray View Organic, they sun-dry their fruits on the land naturally. We then make our own ginger beer on site and soak them in it with a blend of spices. To us, quality ingredients are the key to a great Hot Cross Bun, the juiciness of the fruits and the texture. It needs to be fluffy and soft. And yes, we use mixed peels at the bakery."
Open Thursday the 29th and Saturday the 31st
Closed Friday and Sunday.
Rich Seymour (General Manager) - Tivoli Road Bakery
Rich said - "Michael from Tivoli Road is a superstar and everything on the menu is top-class, get in quick because they sell out early!"
From Tivoli Road Bakery:
"We spent three years working on the recipe until we were happy with it. It’s a combination of the right combination of spices and technique. It’s a special time of year because all the bakers and the customers are so excited, and the smell when the first trays come out of the oven is magic. The quality of the fruit is really important, If it’s too dry it will burn and ruin the whole bun. We use Murray View Organics fruit. We also scald the milk before mixing it in; this changes the nature of the protein and makes the crumb nice and soft."
Open Good Friday, Easter Saturday and Easter Sunday 7:30am - 1pm.
Closed on Easter Monday for a big rest!
One last thing - Peel or no peel? Peel!
Alicia Taylor (Production Assistant and Chef) - Cobb Lane
Alicia said - "My local bakery! Eat these HCB's in store as their house made butter is amazing!"
From Cobb Lane:
"The fluffy texture and the sticky spiced red wine glaze on our Hot Cross Buns sets us apart. We believe the perfect Hot Cross Bun has the right amount of spice and fruit, slathered with cultured butter!"
Open All Weekend:
Weekend/Public Holidays 8am-4pm
One last thing - Peel or no peel? We are all about the peel - traditionalists!
Liliana Basile (Office Manager) - A local Baker
Liliana said "You haven't tasted Hot Cross Buns until you've tasted 'A Local Baker' WOOD FIRED HCB's!"
From A Local Baker:
"Our buns are vegan and include no dairy at all. We don’t use any ascorbic acid (vitamin c), commercial yeast, preservatives or oils. We believe in hot fermentation which means we mix our dough above 32 degrees and then let it rest for 8 hours before we bake in our wood fired scotch oven. This is the oldest way of making bread and this way sourdough produce more lactic acid in to the dough and provide beautiful texture and it is amazingly good for digestion."
Open Friday (9-5) Saturday (8-3) and Sunday (9-3)
One last thing - Peel or no peel? No peel! Just currants - oh, we also make our own spice mix.
Briana Finlay (Finance Manager) - Loafer Bread
Briana said "I love the density and moisture of Loafer Bread HCB's - definately my fav in all of Melbourne"
From Loafer Bread:
"The dark malt and spice mix make our Hot Cross Buns extra special. Then there's the peel - we candy our own lemons and oranges and they make it extra delicious. Lots of good quality organic fruits make a great hot cross bun. Generous, moist and delicious! That's a good bun."
Open on Thursday 29th of March. This is the last day for buns at Loafer Bread.
One last thing - Peel or no peel? Personally, I think hot cross buns are best with peel - I like the traditional style.
James Williams (Marketing Manager) - Rustica
James said "Rustica's Dark Chocolate Hot Cross Buns are my guilty pleasure - I buy way too many and find myself eating long after Easter is over!"
"Our Hot Cross Buns are super soft and filled with plump fruits soaked in pear juice. We believe a great bun needs to be well spiced, super soft and juicy, so it melts in your mouth when toasted."
Open all Easter from 8-4 except Easter Monday (closed).
One last thing - Peel or no peel? We don't use peel, we use full pureed oranges. This provides a fresher orange flavour in comparison to the start peel flavour.
Grant Freeman (Production Manager) - Red Beard Historical Bakery
Grant said "This place is worth the trip to Trentham on it's own, and their sourdough Hot Cross Buns wood fired onsite"
From Red Beard Bakery:
"Our HXBs are traditionally wild-fermented (sourdough) and made from local ingredients. Apart from wonderful Mount Zero Pink Lake Salt, they contain the most splendid organic dried fruit from Frank & Pene Porter’s family fruit block at Murray View Organics. We bake them in our 128-year-old scotch oven fired on sustainably harvested plantation sugar gum."
Open the whole Easter weekend 8am - 5pm
Willow Humphries (Sales Rep) - Wild Life Bakery
Willow said "These guys do a cracking sourdough HXB that's dense enough to hold a WHOLE HEAP of butter!"
From Wild Life Bakery:
"I think the main thing that makes our buns a bit special is that ours are totally naturally fermented, using our sourdough culture, and don’t have any added commercial yeast. This makes our HCBs a little denser than others and I think a heavier HCB is quite nice. I think a great HCB is, like most other foods, a matter of balance. It should have plenty of nice fruit and spice, but you should get a good flavour from the dough coming through. And let’s be honest: the most important part of a hot cross bun is covering it with great salted butter. We serve ours with cultured salted butter from King Valley Dairy, and it really makes them. We’ll be open on Easter Saturday, but closed Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday. We’re looking at opening up on Good Friday just for takeaway HCBs and coffee, but I haven’t confirmed it yet. If you have time to check in before the newsletter goes out I might be able to let you know, but otherwise you can just say that we’re closed that weekend.
One last thing - Peel or no peel? Ours do contain some peel, but not much. Again: balance!
Ian Latchford (Sales) - La Madre Bakery
From La Madre:
"A heap of goodness is packed into each and every La Madre hot cross bun, with chemical free vine fruits from Tabletop Grapes (Mildura) and a unique blend of spice with a hint of citrus. We also make Choc Cherry hot cross buns – with a premium blend of ingredients including the highest quality Persian sour cherries and Belgian chocolate. Each bun is handcrafted by a team of passionate local Geelong bakers using the best ingredients available from the region and beyond.
We love a bun with good guts! With a sourdough base our buns have a denser constitution, combined with natural ingredients and a sugar spice glaze, they are the ultimate sticky bun. And of course we recommend to eat them toasted and buttered up!"
Open as normal during the week from 7am – 3pm and from 7am – 1pm on Good Friday and Easter Saturday.
One last thing - Peel or no peel? It’s a personal preference, it can be the first question a customer ask us when buying their hot cross buns so it’s obviously a ‘hot’ topic. We make our buns without peel, that seems to be the popular preference.
Some other Hot Cross Bun experts that we supply:
Zeally Bay Bakery