Food and Drink


Brasserie Bread Baking Class

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It’s the morning after a five hour sake degustation. It’s 10am. This is early for a Saturday. It’s raining and I’m supposed to be on the other side of the city in an hour. Am feeling understandably reluctant.

But there are carbs in sight.

Brasserie Bread do French pastries and cakes, and a fairly spectacular organic sourdough among other artisan breads. They’re also teaching people like me to bake.

So it is, likely to the detriment of my thighs, that I transport my weary limbs to South Melbourne to absorb some excess liquor from my stomach.

Chef Michael Klausen keeps it simple. Ingredients are laid out before us, pre-measured, and we focus on mixing and learning a kneading technique. For a Saturday morning, a surprising amount of raunchy dough jokes are thrown about.

Memories of sake seeping out of my pores earlier in the day begin to fade. We knead. We rest. We knead some more. We learn about baking techniques, about the bakery itself, take a tour and we eat fancy cheeses, smoked salmon and dips. There is wine.

Before we know it, it’s time for our creations to go into the oven. Before this can happen though, inspiration strikes and a couple of us start adding things from the snack table in a wild flurry of moderately drunk (there was wine) inventiveness. Blue cheese and pickle sounds like a brilliant idea. We’ll call it hangover bread, it’ll be amazing.

The thing about plastering raw dough in cheese and then dousing it in olive oil is that it tends to shallow fry itself in the oven, which is totally amazing.

It did however, have a face only a mother could love, and while most other nouveau bakers left clutching decent looking dinner rolls and baguettes, the hangover bread was ridiculed.

Ugly but delicious breads aside, we all head home happily carb-loaded. With my new found baking skills I am feeling somewhat confident, with a sense of accomplishment, and yes, perhaps still a little drunk.

Brasserie Bread run classes through the year. To find out more visit

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