Parramatta is not only growing, it's absolutely exploding! Everyone from Bourke St Bakery to Jamie Oliver are swinging open their doors trying to cash in on the huge foodie population that lives in the western suburbs of this wonderful city of ours. Joining this influx is The Baker & Builder Cafe. If you are a lover of seriously good baked goods then you need to get your empty belly there quick smart and you can take the kidlets along to, as their little bellies are just as well catered for. And the really cool thing is, that every Saturday there is entertainment just for our precious possums!
As soon as you walk into the Baker & Builder you are met with the amazing smell and sight of freshly baked goods coming straight out of the oven in the very unique open plan kitchen right in front of you. The owner is the baker and her name is Leanne. This chick has a pretty impressive resume. She grew up in the country (she actually hails from the same part of NSW as I do), then moved to the big smoke and worked her butt off in some of the city's best restaurants. She has also done stints abroad, and then she went on to own the Sweet Infinity Bakery of Woolloomooloo/Strand Arcade fame. Leanne has now moved her kitchen west, and as a result, life has just got a little more sweeter for the residents of Parramatta.
You never know what sweet treats will be waiting for you when you arrive at the Baker & Builder. The selection changes daily. One day it may be lemon meringue tarts, sponge cake and brownies, the next it may be cookie monster cupcakes, passionfruit melting moments and apple cakes. And that's part of the charm of dining at the Baker & Builder - it's always going to be a surprise what you will find coming out of the oven that day.
The Baker & Builder Cafe is really spacious, so it is an ideal place to catch up with friends or your mother's group, as there is plenty of room for prams. It's located in the Entrada building in North Parramatta. You can either park on the street or in the building's car park which is underground (parking is free for the first 3 hrs). Within this building there is an excellent Coles supermarket, a medical centre and a few other shops. This interior of the Baker & Builder is quite eclectic, with a mix of old and new furniture - it's a little bit industrial, a little bit upcycled, a little bit hipsterish, and most definitely not pretentious.
The Baker & Builder occupies a prime location looking out onto the sunny courtyard of the building. Seating is available both inside and out, and there are high chairs for little bottoms to sit in. Toilets are located across the courtyard from the cafe, but there isn't a baby change table (you also have to walk down a few stairs to get to the loos). There are colouring books and pencils to keep the kids occupied, and plenty of space for them to wander around, both inside and out. The best place to sit with kids is outside as there is a huge trunk of toys for them to play with.
As mentioned earlier, Saturdays are all about the kids at The Baker & Builder. Our boys have had their face painted, they've seen baby animals and super heroes on some of the days we have visited. But there has also been yo yo competitions, kids gardening work shops and even pony rides. All of these activities are absolutely free! Make sure you like the Baker & Builder Facebook page so that you can check out what will be happening for kids each week. On Tuesday it's all about the Mums with a special morning for Mums Groups being held each week.
Now it's not just about the baked goods at The Baker & Builder - their breakfasts are delicious and so are their lunches! Our favourites on the menu are the Mushroom Toss and the BuilT It Breakfast. At lunch time the Steak Sandwich goes down a treat, as do the freshly baked Pies of the Day. And if you are concerned anout all of the calories of the baked goods, just have one of the Baker's freshly prepared salads to eat for lunch, with a lemon meringue chaser!
Little Bakers are so well looked after with their very own food and beverage menu. The menu costs around $6.00 and they can have everything from Scrambled Eggs on Toast, to a Ham & Cheese Toastie to Bacon & Musroom Pasta. There are babycinos, smoothies and freshly squeezed juices for them to drink as well as all of the yummy looking baked goods for them to munch on. Our boys are very fond of the Nutella Croissants!
Now onto the all important coffee! The Colombian Reserve is served at the Baker & Builder. I had never tried this coffee before I visited, and it is seriously good. If you aren't a caffeine fiend then you need to try their Sticky Chai tea. The mix is made inhouse and is perfect to warm your cockles on a wintry day.
The addition of the Baker & Builder cafe to Parramatta's dining scene is just another reason to confirm that the west is fast becoming THE new dining hub of Sydney. Hopefully more people like Leanne will keep coming further down Parramatta Rd, because there are so many foodie families that live out this way, who love good food and good coffee, and just want to enjoy it all with their families as well!
7/20 Victoria Rd, Parramatta NSW 2150
Open Tue- Sun
Tue - Fri: 7am - 6pm; Sat: 8am - 4pm; Sun 8am - 3pm