Do you ever make an excuse to visit a particular suburb or set of shops so you can actually do something else that you’d much rather do, but you know it would appear excessively indulgent to be making a trip just to visit that place?
I confess I have a few places like that. I often do my grocery shopping in Gungahlin, though it is not my closest big shopping centre, because really I want to eat a pork roll from Saigon Fresh.
Same goes for Ricardo’s cafe and pâtisserie. This little piece of heaven is at the local Jamison shops in Canberra’s north. It’s what I love about Canberra’s suburban shops. Most suburbs have a shopping centre (thanks to the spirit of Walter Burley Griffin’s plan) and many of these shops have a hidden treasure; think Morks at Florey shops (now in Kingston) and I give a big thumbs up to the Hawker village bakery at the Hawker shops. However, my number one vote goes to Ricardo’s at Jamison.
Ricardo’s get very busy on the weekends, but the service is always super friendly and gives you the feeling that the staff love working there. They make excellent coffee and over the years I have eaten my way through most of their menu; both patisserie and the cafe, which they regularly change. I won’t share my library of images of everything I’ve eaten, as that orgy of gluttony is best kept for my private viewing. But here are a few:
Recent additions include the delectable Nutella sandwich. The simple name belies the deliciousness of this offering. I can’t remember the exact description (sorry, very slack product review), but it goes something like this: giant hazelnut macaron, filled with a sublime hazelnut mousse and a dark chocolate salted hazelnut ganache layer between the mousse and the macaron shells and was rolled in chunky toasted hazelnuts. It wasn’t pretty to eat, so I’ll spare you the ‘road kill’ I made from it with my knife and fork. But heck: it had my number.
It’s worth a visit for their range of macarons alone.
The display is ever changing and the classics, including the assortment of fruit-themed (apple, blueberry, mango) cheesecake balls also evolves.
The apple cheesecake we tried today had the inner stewed apple pieces replaced with little explosions of sweet and bright grape-shaped apple balls (apple ‘caviar’) . Oh my!
Totally, totally worth it.