Baked Desserts: Quality Ingredients and Delicious Flavours

Coffee and desserts are a perfect match to treat yourself. Claire Stuart, baker and owner of Baked Desserts, has built her successful business around the philosophy: Use high quality ingredients only, always look for new delicious flavours. Claire and her husband Malac recently moved their location from Noosa to a Kawana Shoppingworld. Always wanting to add coffee to their offering, they decided to tour Sunshine Coast’s coffee shops “incognito” in search for the perfect cup to accompany their desserts, which are easily some of the best sweet treats around.

Can you tell us a little bit about who is behind the bakery, Claire?

I met Malac over a decade ago when we were working in the same restaurant in the United Kingdom. We quickly fell in love and spent many evenings in a local bar drinking cocktails and writing our business ideas on beer mats. Two children, one marriage and four house moves later (including one across the world and one interstate), the dream is now a reality.

When did you discover your love for baking?

Malac grew up in South Africa and would always bake with his grandma. I am from Hampshire, England and have been in love with everything to do with food and cooking for as long as I can remember.

What brought you and your business to the Sunshine Coast?

Malac has been managing restaurants since his teens and worked as a barista before. I was a special education teacher before starting my cake business in Melbourne named Claire’s Bakes. Then I landed my dream job in a cake supply warehouse called Let’s Celebrate Parties. I was paid to order cake supplies and chat cakes all day and loved every second of it!

When we moved to Noosa in 2018, we opened Baked Noosa and baked artisan cupcakes, macarons and birthday cakes. With our new location in Kawana Shoppingworld, we really wanted to start serving coffee. After a major rebranding we’re now calling ourselves Baked Desserts.

What is the philosophy behind Baked Desserts?

We both love high quality ingredients and delicious flavours and felt this was lacking from most desserts we tried. We bake everything from scratch and you can catch every step through our viewing window.

If someone visits your bakery, what dessert should they definitely try?

Vanilla and chocolate cupcakes will always fly out the door. Our vegan Oreo cupcakes and Rainbow cupcakes are also massive hits.

Have you had any unusual requests for a birthday cake that made you smile?

I’ve done a Cat in the Hat cake for a baby’s first birthday with big tall hat and a fish bowl on top. It was all hand painted!

“We spend hours researching and sourcing the best of the best ingredients (we only use Belgian chocolate, free range eggs and locally produced milk) and refining our techniques. It was important that we found a coffee partner who shared that philosophy.” – Claire Stuart

What made you decide that you wanted to get into coffee industry?

Malac has worked as a barista before so he always wanted to offer coffee. When the opportunity opened up, we started touring the Sunshine Coast and searched for the best coffee that would align with our brand concept. We visited many coffee shops, sort of flying “under the radar”.

Coffee drinkers in Australia have high expectations when it comes to their favourite cup. Did you feel a lot of pressure to get it right? 

We were recommended quite a few roasters on the Coast by our friends, but when we visited some of their coffee shops, the coffee was a bit disappointing. It was standard at best. Another thing was that both of us had a very clear idea what we wanted our brand to look like: black and white logo, concrete and rustic timber for the fit out.
When we first walked into the Clandestino cafe inside Belmondos, everything was spot on. The coffee was amazing. We ordered food and coffee and Malac goes: “This is not bad. It’s actually pretty good”. That’s probably the biggest compliment in the world you can get from him if you’re in hospitality.

What do you think makes a good and long lasting partnership?

We love that Clandestino takes as much pride in what they do as we do. We spend hours researching and sourcing the best of the best ingredients (we only use Belgian chocolate, free range eggs and locally produced milk) and refining our techniques. It was important that we found a coffee partner who shared our philosophy. We also love that you guys are continually involved with us and the support is still in place.

What makes a great coffee experience?

There’s nothing worse than bad or inconsistent coffee. And people can definitely taste it. They stop by and ask a lot of questions. They grab their coffee, walk away and come back saying how good it was. And we just say: “We know!”

You’ve been open for a few weeks now. What are your plans for this year?

Malac is already thinking about opening another store already. I however am just happy enjoying the business growing. We have a small but beautiful team, including two juniors who we are passing on all our secrets to.

And last but not least…How do you drink your coffee?

I love skinny lattes, always with an extra shot. That gets me through the busy days.