Melbourne's Best Desserts: 19 Sweet Treats to Try for Yourself
Bring out the dessert spoons and sample some of Melbourne's best desserts.
Dessert may be the last part of a meal, but it’s certainly not the least. Those of us with a raging sweet tooth know that it can be the highlight of the evening, offering up an explosion of colour, flavour and texture that sends all our pleasure receptors tingling. Step up your dessert game with our favourite scoops, slices and dishes across the city. Spanning both creative and classic sweets, Melbourne's best desserts will have you coming back for seconds.
The fun-loving Milo parfait at Lagoon Dining
Trust us, you don't want to miss out on this chocolate milo parfait from Lagoon Dining, all dulce de leche, puffed rice and raspberry deliciousness. It's brain meltingly good nostalgia on a plate, and one of the best desserts in Melbourne. Crunchy, creamy, sweet, salty, it simple pops and crackles in your mouth.
263 Lygon Street, Carlton
The cakes at Tori's
Sometimes the best Melbourne desserts are found tucked away down a lane in a CBD bakery brimming with insanely delicious cakes...and that's where Tori's steps up to the plate. This little bakery, with its cosy vibes, memorable vintage interiors and artisanal cakes, offers a sweet escape from hustle and bustle of city life. Bring in your favorite book, grab a spot on their comfy couch and let them serve you a delicious array of coffee, hojicha and premium matcha before you begin choosing a bite to eat. Their home-baked cakes and treats taste as good as they look, everything from lychee shortcake and madeleines with magical flavour combinations, to banoffee pie and black sesame cheesecake. Pure cake bliss, every time.
28 Niagara Lane, Melbourne
A new take on the cheesecake at LeTAO
Melbourne's best desserts has a creamy new contender. You need to try Japan's best-selling cheesecake at LeTAO. Formed in Hokkaido in 1998, they launched their beautifully minimalist Melbourne flagship late last year. In addition to their signature Double Fromage cheesecake, the shop features an array of seasonal specials and in-store exclusives like the Neige Blanc (camembert cheesecake layered with French honey and a biscuit crumb) and the Australia-exclusive Snow Cake (a delectable dessert featuring a double-layer of smooth milk mousse infused with Hokkaido milk and luscious Australian mascarpone, drizzled with a creamy milk sauce made with white chocolate). Their milk and cheese-swirled soft serve is also a must-try, made better when served with a shot of Market Lane coffee.
The best part? It's open until 10.00pm daily, making it perfect for any late-night cheesecake cravings.
238 Swanston Street, Melbourne
The black sesame and green tea parfait at Robata
The desserts at Robata hit different, and we have a hard time choosing between the miso crème brulee and this ever so pretty black sesame and green tea parfait. This gorgeous, Weis-bar looking creation has a lusciously creamy semifreddo texture, with smack you in the mouth matcha and toasted sesame notes (in the best way possible). The sesame crisps delicately placed atop only add to the tantalising texture of this Melbourne dessert. Like Robata itself, it's a whole lot of fun.
2 Exhibition Street, Melbourne
The delectable drama of Grill Americano's tiramisu
Decadent yet light, tiramisu might just be the perfect way to end a meal. The king of Italian desserts can be found in many places, but few are doing a rendition as good as buzzy Grill Americano. Bringing a slice of Italian elegance to Melbourne via NYC, enjoy a sensational dining experience before ordering up some of the city's latest dessert magic.
They add their own spin by adding a thin layer of tempered chocolate, which adds satisfying texture to a truly covetable tiramisu. Inside, perfect layers and the use of stove-top espresso coffee play together like true partners in crime.
The best part? It's scooped out tableside by Grill's white jacketed wait staff.
112 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
Filipino-inspired gelato at Kariton Sorbetes
Melbourne is brimming with top tier gelatarias, but none are churning flavours as exciting as Kariton Sorbetes. The small batch shop, founded by fine dining chefs John Rivera and Minh Duong, translates beloved Filipino flavours into vivid desserts. Here you’ll find scoops like ube halaya (purple yam with caramelised coconut curds), keso (cheddar and vanilla with roasted cashews) and avocado condensed milk. Made with creamy Gippsland Jersey milk, you can get your gelato in a cup, cone or soft homemade bread bun, just like they do in the Philippines.
50 Leeds Street, Footscray
177 Russell Street, Melbourne
The boozy and beautiful baklava tiramisu from Maha North & Maha East
We're in love with Shane Delia's luscious iteration of this tried and tested dessert. Say hello to Maha North and Maha Easts' baklava tiramisu, decked out with candied filo and nuts, and layered with kaymak & honey cream and boozy sponge fingers. Easily one of Melbourne's best desserts, you don't want to miss out on a serving of this beauty. Gather, celebrate and savour every bite of this sweet, creamy, nutty and playfully textured concoction and try your best not to float right up to foodie heaven.
86 Smith Street, Collingwood
36 Chapel Street, Windsor
Traditional ricotta cannoli at T. Cavallaro & Sons
It's a big call, but this family-owned pasticceria might make the best cannoli in Melbourne. T. Cavallaro & Sons has been part of the fabric of Footscray since the 1950s, treating customers to their crisp pastries filled with lush cream or freshly whipped ricotta. They fly out the door on weekends along with other traditional Sicilian sweets, cakes and biscotti, so swing by early and buy a box to enjoy after dinner that night.
98 Hopkins Street, Footscray
Pick your poison at Tarts Anon
From lockdown hustle to a bricks and mortar store, Tarts Anon has been one of Melbourne's most hyped bakery openings in the last few years. Specialising in magnificent sweet and savoury tarts, chef Gareth Whitton’s fine dining pedigree (he previously worked at Dinner by Heston) is evident in their perfectly even, crisp shells and classic yet addictive fillings. While the rich chocolate and caramel tart is their bestseller, we can’t go past their trusty lemon tart, particularly when it’s supercharged with a layer of zippy rhubarb jam.
Side note: The new blackberry and orange combination is another must. Divine!
29a Gwynne Street, Melbourne
Perfect peanut butter parfait at Supernormal
Supernormal’s peanut butter parfait is an iconic Melbourne dessert, having been served continuously on their menu since 2014 (the recipe has even been published in Gourmet Traveller). The decadent dessert sees smooth peanut butter parfait covered in a pool of salted caramel sauce, topped with a quenelle of the silkiest chocolate mousse and a scattering of crushed peanuts. Sticky, sweet, salty and rich but never overpowering, it’s a must-try dessert for any self respecting foodie.
180 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
Ice cream mochi at Hareruya Pantry
Have you ever tried yukimi daifuku? The nostalgic Japanese treat wraps ice cream in a thin blanket of mochi (rice cake), resulting in a bite that’s soft, chewy and sweet. Try an elevated version at Hareruya, a Melbourne dessert takeaway-slash-convenience store overlooking Lincoln Square. Each serve is wrapped to order, encasing gelato flavours like matcha, sesame, yuzu and Calpico (a Japanese soft drink). You can also get your scoop inside a rice wafer sandwich – called monaka – and pick up miso brownies and castella cakes to enjoy in the park.
15–17 Lincoln Square South, Carlton
Tipomisu at Tipo 00
Beloved pasta bar Tipo 00’s take on the classic tiramisu is one for the ages. Starting with a dense choc brownie base filled with mascarpone cream and dark rum, it’s capped with a disc of dark chocolate that’s theatrically poured over with a salted espresso, caramel and dark chocolate sauce at your table. The result is an intricate self-saucing pudding that’s indulgent but sophisticated, rich but never too sweet.
361 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne
Hazelnut Praline Crunch Cake at Bibelot
Bibelot’s opulent cakes showcase the best of French patisserie, each incorporating dozens of techniques and artful garnishing. Almost too pretty to eat, bringing one of their cakes to a dinner party is sure to make you the favourite guest. The hazelnut praline crunch cake is their signature for a reason – the nutty, choc mousse cake is an explosion of textures, combining hazelnut dacquoise, gianduja mousse, chocolate crémeux, praline crunch, chocolate chantilly, hazelnut choc crumble and salted caramel macarons. Safe to say, one slice is never enough.
285-287 Coventry Street, South Melbourne
The storied chocolate soufflé at Grossi Florentino
The Grossi Florentino chocolate soufflé is true Melbourne dessert royalty. It was on the menu before the Grossi family took over at the turn of the century. Simultaneously light and rich, it's easy to see why it's both revered and still sitting pretty on the menu. It's made with dark Callebaut cocoa, served in a copper pot and paired with hazelnut praline and a Valrhona dark chocolate sauce. Plus, the amaretto ice cream served alongside is genius, adding a level of complexity to the tasting experience as a whole.
80 Bourke Street, Melbourne
Layers and layers of Russian Honey Cake at Gray and Gray Bread and Wine
A masterclass in Eastern European dining awaits at Gray and Gray Bread and Wine...and it also happens to be the place to get the best Russian Honey Cake fix in Melbourne. It's a technically involved masterpiece, simultaneously buttery and spongy. It's two main components are layers of cake separated by cream cheese and whipped dulce de leche cream frosting, both of which have burnt honey notes that lend the cake its slight bitterness. Aromatic and dramatic, this high-voltage cake is one of Melbourne's best desserts.
188 High Street, Melbourne
Lamington Gelato Cake at Piccolina
The lamington gets an irresistible Italian remix at Piccolina, where they’ve turned the classic Aussie treat into a delicious gelato cake. At first glance it looks like a normal lamo (albeit round) but a bite reveals creamy semifreddo and strawberry jam loaded between layers of sponge cake. Encased in dark chocolate and sprinkled with coconut, it’s both sweet and surprisingly sophisticated. The only part of this next-level dessert we can’t get behind is their claim that each cake “serves 2”.
Various locations in CBD, Collingwood, Richmond, Hawthorn and St Kilda
Gulab Jamun and Pistachio Kulfi at Delhi Streets
Generously laced with sugar, syrup and butter, Indian sweets are not for the faint hearted. On the flip side, you can be assured that these bite sized cakes, puddings and slices always return maximum flavour per serving. At Delhi Streets try the most popular Indian dessert, gulab jamun, which are soft semolina doughnuts soaked in enough warm syrup to make your dentist’s ears tingle. Pair it with cooling and creamy pistachio kulfi – ice cream delicately flavoured with pistachios, cardamom, saffron and cinnamon.
22 Katherine Place, Melbourne
The souffle pancakes at Kumo
Fresh to the city, Kumo means cloud in Japanese, which is exactly what you’ll experience when you bite into these fluffy cloud-like soufflé pancakes. They're magically delicious and oh-so light and fluffy, with an array of tantalising flavours including Boba Brulee Bomb, Biscoffee, Baconana and Puffy Pandan. In a word: yum!
Melbourne Central, 198 Little Lonsdale Street, Melbourne
Anything from Palette. at night.
Who isn't craving something sweet at night? This snug, understated North Melbourne hangout is supplying Melburnians with coffee and matcha, croffles and desserts aplenty. A delightful combination of Korean and Australian flavours are ready and waiting at Palette. at night. with their delectable desserts truly impossible to resist. Think pistachio and raspberry or crispy cinnamon croffles, a wickedly indulgent chocolate terrine, matcha Basque cheesecake, signature tiramisu and a French toast-style Biscoff brioche. Equally delectable drinks like peanut demi-creme and iced earl grey tea lattes pair effortlessly alongside.
610 Queensberry Street, North Melbourne