Hidden away in the Regent Place shopping centre, just around the corner from Event Cinemas on George St, is the Azuma Patisserie. This little bakery cafe offers a great twist on the usual post-movie 'coffee-and-cake' – it's Japanese.
It offers a mix of traditional and modern Japanese treats including a range of freshly baked chiffon cakes, green tea tarts, ice-cream, and (my personal favourite) red-bean-paste-filled buns. You can accompany your dessert with a matcha latte, soba cha (Japanese buckwheat tea) or green tea. For the less adventurous, standard coffee and tea is also available.
Azuma Patisserie is the latest in a family of highly successful Japanese restaurants. It has two sophisticated older sisters – Azuma Kushiyaki (right next door) and Azuma Chifley – both of which regularly receive rave reviews. Azuma Chifley was awarded a hat in the 2010 Good Food Guide. Then there are the more relaxed, noodle-focused brothers – Ton Ton Chifley and Ton Ton Regent.
Unfortunately, the sterile shopping centre atmosphere creeps into this place a bit, which detracts from the enjoyment of settling in for a chat. But despite that minor complaint, it's well worth a visit next time you're in the area and looking for a treat.