Blink and you’ll miss this roadside bakery. But that would be a big mistake, because it’s home to a cake that has reached cult status.
You know when you’re told you can’t have something, and it makes you instantly want it?
That was the relationship my mother had with a particular cake as soon as lockdown 2.0 kicked off in Victoria, and movement around the state was restricted.
And it’s fair, because the ethereal passionfruit sponge cake she was fixated on is something extraordinary.
It’s found at Freshwater Creek Cakes – a hidden gem that is one of country Victoria’s best kept secrets.
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This is the stuff lockdown dreams are made of. Picture: InstagramSource:Supplied
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Freshwater Creek is a small rural community in the Surf Coast Shire. Most people pass through it when they are driving to the Great Ocean Road (about 1 hour and 20 minutes out of Melbourne).
In the mid ’80s a bakery popped up, in a fairly unassuming shed-like structure on the side of the road near the servo. And word soon got around that their cakes and pies were top notch, and it quickly filled with sandy kids and sun-kissed parents needing sustenance after a day at the beach.
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This is what you’re looking for. Picture: Instagram/Freshwater Creek CakesSource:Supplied
But the one item that reached cult status was their passionfruit sponge. People began driving ludicrous distances just to purchase one. Brides began choosing it as their wedding cake. Now, on busy weekends, they have to make 150 sponges a day to meet demand.
And it really is a triumph. The light-as-a-feather sponge would, without doubt, get the seal of approval from any card-carrying member of the CWA. Then there is the zingy passionfruit icing, perfectly complemented by a generous slather of vanilla-laced cream, so fluffy and puffy you can imagine angels might sleep on it.
It’s not overly complicated – it’s a classic, perfectly executed. It evokes nostalgic memories of grandmas and school fetes.
There’s also a chocolate version if that’s more your speed. Picture: InstagramSource:Supplied
As one Sydney visitor wrote on TripAdvisor “As a keen baker when I read Freshwater Creek’s passionfruit sponges were the best in Australia I had no choice but to drive 1.5 hours out of the way on our road trip to try one. It was so worth the drive.”
If passionfruit sponge cake isn’t your thing (please, reconsider), they also do pies, quiches and old-school jelly cakes that are also showstoppers. There’s a range of excellent locally made products as well.
But back to that hero sponge cake. It must be mentioned that you can’t just buy a slice – they sell whole cakes for $21.95. But don’t be intimidated. Just ask the nice folk behind the counter to slice it for you and sling you a couple of forks. Then sink into the rapture of devouring it as you make your way along the glorious Great Ocean Road.
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