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Monday, June 05, 2006

Beard Papa's, Chatswood

I know. I KNOW!!!

If your initial response to the above headline was anything like mine, your heart would be racing, you'd be blinking in disbelief, and your already overactive salivary glands would really be working overtime.

But it's true. It's true. Beard Papa have finally opened in Chatswood. They've been open since the 27th of April. I know! I know! Why did noone tell me?
Beard Papa staff

Were it not for Billy's photo, I would never have been the wiser. But as soon as we realised that our wildest dreams had come true, we were over the Bridge in a shot. Well, within four days. On Thursdays they open late. Woohoo.

We raced into Chatswood Westfield with adrenalin pumping. Shopping centres are always inpenetrable mazes, and we scanned the horizon, the map and the shopping directory with increasing urgency. Would it be sad to admit I may have said "This is like hunting for the clue box in the Amazing Race"?

"Wait!" I pointed excitedly. "That guy! Down there! He's carrying a box! A Beard Papa box! He came from that way!" We pelted down the escalators in search of Phil, I mean, Beard Papa, and then, there it was... I'm sure I heard a chorus of angels.

Beard Papa store

So what's the big deal? Beard Papa are cream puffs for the choux pastry connoisseur. Originally opened in Japan in 1997 (who else would have a pipe-smoking Santa-like figure as their mascot), there are now hundreds of Beard Papa stores all over Asia and the United States.

The allure of the Beard Papa cream puff lies in its freshness. The puffs are baked fresh every three hours and only at purchase are they filled with vanilla-bean-speckled dollops of whipped cream custard. I'm sure I spotted a leaflet in the Broadway store in New York that boasted that the secret to its crispy choux pastry lay in its unique two-layer shell. The inner sweet fluffiness comes from its core of choux pastry, the crisp outer layer is a piecrust shell.

Beard Papa unfilled pastries
Freshly baked cream puff shells

Beard Papa custard piping
Filling each cream puff with custard to order

The girls welcomed us with traditional calls of "Irrashaimase" and their uniforms were so Japanese it made me smile. Samples of both vanilla and chocolate cream puffs were warmly dispensed and within minutes we were trotting away with this season's trendiest handbag.

Beard Papa puff

The verdict? As good as ever. I had my first encounter with Beard Papa's in New York City (I know... I had walked past so many when in Japan but for some reason never actually ate one... argh, the agony when I got back and realised my fatal error!). So I feel as if I need to pay penance for my Japan non-consumption sins. Well, that's the excuse I'm using.

The Sydney version, I'm glad to say, lives up to that revelatory New York memory. Pastry that crunches as you bite into it, soft fluffy innards and a burst of smooth silky custard that makes your toes curl with glee.

But now Sydneysiders don't need to travel to Japan. Or the States. Or the Philippines. Or Singapore. Just Chatswood.

So go. Now. Choux won't regret it =)

Beard Papa boxes

Beard Papa's Sweets
K353a Chatswood Westfield
(near General Pants)
1 Anderson Street, Chatswood, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9412 2214

Monday-Wednesday and Friday: 9am-6pm
Thursday: 9am-9pm
Saturday and Sunday: 9am-5pm

1 puff: $2.50
6 puffs: $12.00
12 puffs: $20.00

Related GrabYourForks posts:
Beard Papa's Sweets, March 2007
Beard Papa's Sweets, October 2006
Puffy at Market City, Haymarket Chinatown, July 2007
Puffy at World Square, City, September 2006
15 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Anonymous on 6/05/2006 11:56:00 pm


  • At 6/06/2006 8:47 am, Blogger PiCkLeS said…

    See this is further proof that i live in a hole! first it was the foodcourt below woolies now its Beard Papa puffs. I've been to NY and Japan and I've never seen them before! well you know where I'll be off to on the weekend now.

  • At 6/06/2006 11:36 am, Blogger Jen said…

    Yay, Since a trip to NY and Philippines I have been praying and wishing that Beard Papa's would eventually come to Sydney, and now my prayers have been answered!!

  • At 6/06/2006 2:58 pm, Blogger Su-Yin -Décorateur said…

    I've had beard papa's in Singapore and they were DElicious! especially love the gooeey custard filling!
    Another brand new Sydney must-try is Famous Amos cookies! If im not mistaken, they just opened up a branch in Chatswood as well. They are my absolute favourite! Amazing range of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies.They have a fairly new branch in Melbourne (opened last year). I used to be desperate enough to get my friend in Melbourne to mail the cookies over! express! haha

  • At 6/06/2006 4:02 pm, Blogger papa lazarou said…

    wow yum!... they look great... if i'd read this post earlier, would have gone to chatswood for lunch today...

  • At 6/06/2006 4:19 pm, Blogger Bex said…

    OMG OMG! Seriously hyperventilating. My first puff was in Shanghai, and we tracked them down in HK and then Hawaii and now it's finally here!

    Thanks so much Helen!

  • At 6/06/2006 7:35 pm, Blogger Julia said…

    Oh dear, as if I need another food lemming! I've never heard of Beard Papa but I'm sure as soon as I get back I'll be heading northside for a box of these delights.

    And how cute is the name!

  • At 6/07/2006 1:19 am, Blogger Swee San said…

    beard papa rocks!! we have it here in Malaysia too!

  • At 6/07/2006 2:41 pm, Blogger deborah said…

    oh aaah.... this is wonderful news! i never knew what the fuss was until i tried one in new york and when i had one for morning tea one morning, we walked back to astor place to get one for dessert after dinner. hehe. i'll have to check it out very soon :)

  • At 6/07/2006 5:26 pm, Blogger Veruca Salt said…

    OMG! Papa was open for 33 days before we knew of it's existence!

    Mine were still slightly crispy the next day.

  • At 6/07/2006 6:07 pm, Blogger nicbiccie said…

    Hi Helen! Great site - it always makes me salivate! Thanks for leaving a comment on our blog...that really was a coincidence! I also have the good fortune of living close to Beard Papa's - been twice already. Or could be bad fortune if I get addicted to them!? Tried the chocolate last week, but prefer the vanilla!

  • At 8/18/2006 9:56 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi, just found oyur blog recently!
    I've been waiting for weeks now to go to Chatswood and get Beard Papas, and today i was finally able ot get there but couldn't find any sign of Beard papas on the Directory!!!! has it closed down or something, or is it just not listed on the directory for some reason!?? Any help for a desperate Beard papa's devotee???

  • At 8/21/2006 3:49 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Thank god im going back to chatswood to pick up some photos in a few weeks!! i've been scratching my head over it

  • At 9/01/2006 12:07 am, Blogger papa lazarou said…

    have u been to world square recently? went through there tonight and saw a kinda imitation joint opened called 'puffy' opposite breadtop... the puffs look more like pineapple buns, crispy on top... and the smell of the custard filling was definitely more eggy/milky... long queues though... didnt bother lining up to try...

  • At 9/14/2006 1:01 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi fellow beard papa freaks! :)

    Just thought I'd let you all know that I heard a rumour that a new Beard Papa store will be opening in Chinatown towards the end of the year!

  • At 9/15/2006 9:53 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    There's a Beard Papa's now at the Galleria Shopping Centre in Morley, Perth. My partner works with the guy who owns it (his wife runs the store) and tells me that it was brilliant.


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