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How Freshwater Creek Cafe in country Victoria is serving Australia’s best passionfruit sponge cake

Cake lovers are driving hours out of their way to a roadside bakery in country Victoria for an ‘extraordinary’ sponge hailed as the best in Australia.

They are travelling roughly 90 minutes’ south of Melbourne along the Great Ocean Road to the Surf Coast Shire, where a tiny cafe called Freshwater Creek Cakes has been quietly serving some of the nation’s finest sweets since the mid-1980s.

It was here in an unassuming flat roof shed on the outskirts of a sleepy seaside town that bakers developed the recipe for a feather-light sponge delicate as angel hair, slathered in zesty passionfruit icing and filled with thick vanilla cream.

A chocolate version has been added to the menu in recent years, but it’s the unique flavour of the $21.95 passionfruit original that really draws the crowds.

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Cake lovers are driving hours out of their way to a roadside bakery in country Victoria for 'extraordinary' sponges (passionfruit and chocolate pictured) that have gained cult status

Cake lovers are driving hours out of their way to a roadside bakery in country Victoria for ‘extraordinary’ sponges (passionfruit and chocolate pictured) that have gained cult status

The $21.95 feather-light sponge is slathered in zesty passionfruit icing and filled with thick vanilla cream

The $21.95 feather-light sponge is slathered in zesty passionfruit icing and filled with thick vanilla cream

Brides choose it for their wedding cake. Families slide candles in it to mark milestone birthdays. Charitably-minded fundraisers buy it for bake sales when they have no time to make their own, safe in the knowledge that it’s sure to sell out.

On busy weekends, the bakery makes 150 sponges a day to meet demand.

And on forums like TripAdvisor, reviews stand testament to the mastery of the cake.

‘As a keen baker, when I read Freshwater Creek’s passionfruit sponges were the best in Australia, I had no choice but to drive an hour and a half out of the way on our road trip to try one,’ one Sydney traveller wrote.

‘It was so worth the drive.’ 

It was here in this unassuming flat roof shed on the outskirts of the sleepy seaside town that bakers developed the recipe for the feather-light sponge

It was here in this unassuming flat roof shed on the outskirts of the sleepy seaside town that bakers developed the recipe for the feather-light sponge

The showstopping sponge is the masterpiece of Freshwater Creek Cakes, which has been quietly serving some of Australia's finest sweets since the mid-1980s

The showstopping sponge is the masterpiece of Freshwater Creek Cakes, which has been quietly serving some of Australia’s finest sweets since the mid-1980s

A chocolate version (left) has been added to the menu in recent years, but it's the unique flavour of the $21.95 passionfruit original that draws the crowds

A chocolate version (left) has been added to the menu in recent years, but it’s the unique flavour of the $21.95 passionfruit original that draws the crowds

A local woman agreed, saying she has been stopping there for the past 30 years to pick one up.

‘They are delicious, homemade and consistently perfect. Inexpensive too,’ she wrote.

The bakery, open seven days a week from 8am to 6pm, also sells pies, cookies stuffed with cornflakes and apple and cinnamon pound cakes reminiscent of grandparents’ kitchens.

Other standouts include lemon meringue tarts topped with ornately caramelised cream and a selection of sausage rolls bursting with fennel, rosemary and thyme.

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