The rumours have been swirling thick and fast like a well-whisked crème pâtissière, and now the proverbial cat is out of the piping bag: Melbourne's Lune Croissanterie is set to open in Sydney, co-owner Kate Reid has confirmed.
No site has been locked in – she's weighing up three potential sites in Sydney, but is keeping tight-lipped about their locations. "They're all special and unique in their own way, but nothing is confirmed until the lease is signed."
Reid, who co-owns Lune with restaurateur Nathan Toleman and her brother Cameron Reid, envisages that the Sydney venue will open within 12 months. The long lead time is essential – there's staff to recruit, blueprints to approve, and there's a big question mark over how to maintain the quality of those croissants. It's all part of ensuring the Lune's je ne sais quoi translates over the state border. "This is not an outpost store – we're bringing the Lune experience to Sydney," she says.
Reid is determined to find the perfect venue that speaks true to the business she started eight years ago. It's a golden lesson learnt from in Paris while training at Du Pain et des Idées, a small bakery in the 10th arrondissement run by award-winning baker Christophe Vasseur. "Christophe said to me: 'You can all the best ideas, but until you find the right site, you can't open a business.'"
The pastry powerhouse is renowned for two things: exquisitely engineered croissants, and early-morning queues. They are not mutually exclusive.
The croissants, perfected by Reid, have a crisp shell that shatters beautifully on impact in the mouth; the feathery folds of pastry within are buttery without being bready.
The lines formed soon after Lune opened in its original shopfront in Melbourne's Elwood in 2012; they only persisted after The New York Times described the classic beurre croissant as perhaps "the finest you will find anywhere in the world".
Reid has a forensic approach to producing the pastries – the temperature of every ingredient is measured and recorded, and the resting times are adjusted according to those variables – which belies her former career as a designer for Formula One race cars.
The last time her croissants were spotted in town was at the Lune x Gourmet Traveller pop-up at Surry Hills' Paramount Coffee Project in 2017. The Sydney version will be a permanent site, and Reid has hinted that it will take after the Fitzroy flagship in Melbourne's inner-west, home to "the cube", a six-square-metre climate-controlled glass room where bakers in white neckties knead, roll and wrap dough at a central black-marble counter.
"We've grown a lot since opening in a tiny production kitchen in Elwood, and we've actually gotten better as we've gotten bigger," she says. "It's rare for a business to not just maintain, but also to improve, its quality. It's very exciting."