All posts by Andrew Coker

The Cake Man, Lane Cove

Shop 5A, 23-25 Burns Bay Rd, Lane Cove NSW


Looking up a local bakery to go for lunch, I had originally intended to go to The Pottery Green bakery at Lane Cove. Upon arriving, they didn’t have any vanilla slices, so I went for a walk and found The Cake Man instead. This is a place occupying both sides of an entire arcade between the pedestrian mall and the parking lot at Lane Cove, a locality in the northern suburbs of Sydney. They have a take-away cafe with a few dining tables, a separate fancy cake shop, a restaurant and wine bar, plus their actual bakery and kitchens at this location.

The sausage roll and vanilla slice were described exactly thus by little plaques in the display cabinet and pie warmer – although there was also a “caramelised mille feuille” which looked tempting. The server requested I took a seat at the tables outside, and the items were bought out to me on little plates with serviettes and cutlery.

The Cake Man

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Heatherbrae Pies, Heatherbrae

Cnr Masonite Rd & Pacific Hwy, Heatherbrae, NSW 2324

Heatherbrae Pies.

Heatherbrae Pies is located a couple of hours north of Sydney, and is an ideal place to stop off for lunch or a snack on a road trip up the NSW coast. Ever since starting this food review blog, I’ve anticipated coming here to do a review. The opportunity arrived, I checked their website, and yes, they do indeed sell Sausage Rolls and Vanilla slices!

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The Flaky Tart, Kirribilli

4 Ennis Rd, Kirribilli, New South Wales

The Flaky Tart bakery.

I’d had my eye on this bakery for some time, but on my previous visit it was too early to eat lunch, and I had only recently had breakfast. But I had quickly checked they had sausage rolls and vanilla slices, awaiting a more opportune moment. That moment finally did arrive last weekend, having visited the area for a jog along some harbour-side paths and a swim at the North Sydney pool. I earned this!

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Arthur’s Bavarian Bakehouse, West Pymble

9 Duneba Ave, West Pymble NSW

Arthur’s Bavarian Bakehouse is located in a tiny cluster of shops and restaurants in a quiet suburban street, one block away from the highway at West Pymble. I’ve known about this place for about 15 years and I don’t think anything about it has changed in all that time. They sell a selection of freshly made German style breads and pastries, plus homemade pies, sausage rolls and vanilla slices! There’s also a selection of German household groceries.

The window display proudly declares “Baking with passion”, and the planter boxes and little tables create an inviting friendly atmosphere.


I buy the products from the friendly server and take two brown paper bags to the tables and chairs just outside the front door.

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Darby’s Fresh Bake, Erina

Erina Fair shopping centre, Terrigal Drive, Erina, New South Wales

Went for a drive up the coast today, and did some exploring of new places. While I was out, popped into “the biggest single-level shopping centre in the southern hemisphere” for some shopping. Now there’s a drawcard.

Now, usually, shopping malls in Australia just feature the same 50 shops cloned from every other mall, and aren’t the sort of place you would expect to find an actual bakery that makes its own products. You might find a little cafe that gets baked goods delivered from an off-site commercial kitchen. But I found this little place amongst the standard clothing outlets and homewares stores.


Gleaming red and white decor, with immaculately presented hot and cold display cases. Behind the drinks display there’s a small commercial kitchen where they make the products fresh on the premises. Store signage lists “Slices” and “Sausage Rolls” as the top-billed items – hey, this place is perfect for Snot Block and Roll! I ask for “A sausage roll and a vanilla slice, please”, they ask which type of slice I want, leading me towards “just the standard one?” I go with their suggestion, leaving the fancier-looking one for another time. The total is just $3, this is certainly a bargain.

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Lai’s French Hot Bread & Cakes, North Ryde

144 Coxs Rd, North Ryde, New South Wales

So, this food review blog is actually going to be a combined effort from a number of contributors. Talk began one lunch time with the friends I work with, about the nucleus of an idea where we are food reviewers for one single food item. An item that you can get anywhere. But it should be an item with lots of variability. Something you know when it’s a good one, and know when its a bad one. Vanilla slices! Ubiquitous, beloved, and there’s posh ones and daggy ones and everything in between. Did a brief search, and there’s one other vanilla slice review site, but it’s Melbourne based and seems to have been abandoned for most of the last decade.

Then came the next evolution of the idea – review a complete meal, main and dessert! It was decided then, that the blog would review sausage rolls and vanilla slices. The name “Snot Block and Roll” quickly followed and a plan was afoot to set up the site and start reviewing!

On to my very first review. After a couple of recent failed attempts to locate a suitable bakery on the weekend, I went on a lunchtime expedition to the neighbouring suburb of North Ryde. Parked the car, headed out to cross the road to the bakery I had gone to once before… and found this place instead!

Lais french hot bread and cakes.

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