Darren Purchese Our Brush With Stardom
by Tracey McPhee
How we met Darren Purchese:
A special friend, who also happens to be the amazing Mrs P (you may have heard of her famous Sausage Rolls and other delightful treats at Alowishus) turned 40 in January. To celebrate we recently went to Melbourne for some much needed R&R. The week-end away happened at the end of May, but as the saying goes “Better late than never”. Anyhow, while away we did a great deal of research and development. It was a tough gig to handle. Eating at the many amazing cafes and restaurants Melbourne has to offer. We laid our waistlines on the altar of sacrifice and sampled many delightful morsels.
we caught the tram to St Kilda and enjoyed breakfast and a small selection of around 26 cakes. After this we strolled down Chapel Street for a spot of shopping and right at the end of the day we spotted another cake store – Burch and Purchese. It looked divine and we couldn’t resist a look inside.
I hadn’t seen anything like it. We spent about 20 minutes deciding on what we were going to buy and devour immediately and another 20 on what we could take for dessert later that night. Once decided we started chatting with the lady behind the counter and spotted an amazing cookbook called Sweet Studio, written by Darren Purchese.
Mrs P thought she knew the name but wasn’t entirely sure. The book looked like a good buy so we added it to our selection of cakes. The lady says Darren’s here at the moment, we’ll get him to sign it for you. We thought “That’s Cool”.
So along comes Darren Purchese comes to sign the book. He asks us what we would like the inscription to be (see the pic), and we start chatting. Lovely bloke! He recommended some places for dinner, gave us directions to the tram) via Adriano Zumbo’s Cake shop – we had to go in!), then he chatted to us about our visit to Melbourne.
and he was very impressed that we made all our own cakes (no pre-mixes or brought in cakes in sight). I told him we were nowhere near as fancy as him but if he still let me by his book we would work on it. We had a laugh and left.
That night we Googled “Darren Purchese” and realised we had just been conversing with one of Australia’s Top Pastry Chefs. Darren also has a long string of awards and is a TV Personality. He is actually appearing on Channel 10’s Masterchef Australia tonight. And that was our brush with stardom in Melbourne.
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