Melbourne CBD's next queue for cult eats will begin forming today when Fitzroy croissanterie Lune opens the doors to its second store inside the T & G Building, opposite the Grand Hyatt in Russell Street. Taking over a semi-basement space formerly occupied by an Indian restaurant, the city store will be a streamlined variant of the Fitzroy croissant juggernaut, offering just five classic Lune items rather than the 15 available at the mothership.
"We've gone for an Italian espresso bar vibe," says owner Kate Reid, who designed the space with her business partners, brother Cameron and Nathan Toleman (Higher Ground, Top Paddock). "It's a standing-only space to speed things up. We'll be serving a Monday to Friday office crowd here who don't have 45 minutes to stand in line waiting for breakfast which is why we've truncated the menu to the classics."
There'll be no downgrading of quality to achieve the quicker pace. The plain, almond, and ham and gruyere croissants, pains au chocolat and lemon curd cruffins will all be made and rolled in the glass "cube" in Fitzroy, which is doubling its output to meet demand from the city store. The raw, unproven dough is then transported to the city in a refrigerated truck to be egg-washed and baked on site.
"People will be able to order a croissant that will be only 10 or 15 minutes out of the oven," says Reid. "I don't enjoy a croissant now unless it's still warm from the oven and I want as many people as possible to be able to experience that, too."
The new Lune takes its design cues from Fitzroy with Brutalist concrete floors, ceilings and bars, black glass mirrors and timber features. The three standing bars can accommodate around 60 people comfortably – for as long as the croissants keep coming, at least.
"We've tried to make an educated assumption for how busy we're going to be and we will always try and stay open until our 3pm closing time if we can," says Reid. "We really don't want to disappoint people."
This is the first time Lune has been on a main thoroughfare with regularly passing foot traffic.
"Some of [the people] will know us but a lot of them won't," Kate says.
Going on past form, it won't be long before they do.
Lune Croissanterie CBD, Shop 16, 161 Collins St (enter Russell St), Melbourne, Vic, lunecroissanterie.com. Mon-Fri 7am-3pm (or until sold out).