Just Open: Gontran Cherrier Boulangerie, Collingwood

Gontran Cherrier is buttering up Melbourne with free croissants.
Gontran Cherrier is buttering up Melbourne with free croissants. Photo: Supplied

The time has come, Francophiles, to get in line – Parisian star baker Gontran Cherrier has opened his first official Australian store. 

There are now 27 (and counting) Gontran Cherrier boulangeries around the world, but it's no chain restaurant; the menu at his Collingwood outlet was designed to reflect Melbourne tastes, Cherrier says: it's "a bridge between two cultures."

He's using native Australian ingredients like lemon myrtle and pepperberries, and there are Asian influences too: think rye paired with miso, or a sesame and soy-sauce baguette.

Star baker Gontran Cherrier.
Star baker Gontran Cherrier. Photo: Supplied

Cherrier's been on the ground in Melbourne this month perfecting his croissants, made in enormous Bongard ovens with imported French flour (he sent 6000 kilograms) and rich Lescure butter; head baker Misato Kikushi will fly in from Japan soon to take the reins.

Melbourne's is the first Cherrier boulangerie in the world to double as a cafe; there's a cool blue-grey interior courtesy of Eades and Bergman, and Pope Joan alumnus Travis Welch is at the pans mixing top-notch local produce with Cherrier's buttery carbs – expect all-day breakfast and St Ali coffee.

Open daily 7am-6pm.

140 Smith Street, Collingwood, gontrancherrier.com.au