Austro Bakery brings strudels and kugels to South Melbourne

Austro's pretzel plate with cured meats, cheese and pickles.
Austro's pretzel plate with cured meats, cheese and pickles. Photo: Luis Enrique Ascui

There are plenty of fantastic French-style patisseries around, says baker Sally Roxon. But she and her Austrian-born husband, Christian Gattermayr, chose a different path, opening Austro, a Viennese-style bakery, in South Melbourne.

The most noticeably Austrian thing inside the bakery, previously home to Let Them Eat Cake, is a floor-to-ceiling mural of the village of Hallstatt, by local artist Ava Clifforth.

But at the counter you'll find freshly baked pretzels (some dressed in ham, cheese and sauerkraut), fist-sized sour cherry bublaninas (bubble cakes), lemon and poppy seed kugels, and speculaas biscuits.

The bakery features a mural of the Austrian village of Hallstatt (right).
The bakery features a mural of the Austrian village of Hallstatt (right). Photo: Luis Enrique Ascui

Behind: a whole Linzertorte, cut into thick slices, and apple strudel, which fans might remember from Hausfrau, the Austrian bakery they ran in Yarraville a few years ago.

Roxon has tinkered with the traditional recipes, using less butter and cream to make them slightly lighter. As she says, "Viennese cafe culture is better suited to cold weather."

Aside from cakes and pastries there's a range of breads and a short dine-in menu: dishes such as porridge, a tomato-and-egg-filled shakshuka croissant, and a pretzel plate with cured meats, cheese and pickles.

The traditional Viennese sacher torte.
The traditional Viennese sacher torte. Photo: Luis Enrique Ascui

As much produce as possible is sourced from nearby South Melbourne Market, and there are plans to host central European-style afternoon teas in the future.

Open Wed-Sun 8am-4pm.

147-149A Cecil Street, South Melbourne, 03 9696 4398