Thanks to Adriano Zumbo and Masterchef, the nation has gone macaron crazy. Continuing from what he started last year, Adriano Zumbo celebrates his birthday by baking up a frenzy of macarons. Chocolatesuze and I braved the horrendous rain and waited an hour for some macarons. We saw a familiar face further up the queue. I must admit I didn’t get to go on the first day last year but was fortunate enough to catch all the action the next day. All the macarons that were left over were placed in boxes in a van outside the shop; we had no idea what macarons flavours were left at that time so got what was recommended.
This year seemed to be a bit more organised, pamphlets were handed out as we waited in line; this way we got to know what flavours were on offer, tick the flavours we would like to purchase so we could hand the list to the staff so they could organise our box of macaron goodies for us without much hassle.
The macarons were laid spread out underneath the glass cabinet and what a sight it was! So many pretty colours and so many macarons. There had to be tens of thousands of macarons here.
There were pre-pack macaron boxes available as well which contained 12 different macaron flavours. Feeling a little inspired Willy Wonka, he apparently placed 20 golden macarons inside these boxes and would be giving 5 lucky people a chance to spend a day in the Zumbo Lab. It would have sucked for the other 15 people to be told they missed out.
What are Zumbo macarons without the weird flavours? I didn’t try all of them, the craziest would have been the fish and chips one but it wasn’t there when we placed our order. Apparently it was deep fried with a super crispy batter. I wonder if it tasted anything of fish. Speaking of fish, there was salmon macaron to be had as well, which looked like it had a sprinkle of pepper on its shell. As I was being served, one of the staff took a bite into the hamburger macaron and commented that it really tasted of hamburgers, from what I can see, there was cheese and tomato sauce in it. Another strange flavour was the tabaccoroon, shaped like a cigar with silver powder, I wonder if it really tasted of tobacco.
Amongst all the different macaron flavours, Zumbo and his team manage to knock up 3 flavours of jumbo size macarons (all of which had fresh raspberries in them); these flavours were rose, passionfruit and lime and basil. I got the passionfruit one for Ant and he enjoyed it a lot. A very light passionfruit cream filled these pretty macaron shells.
I settled with 20 macarons I wanted beer and nuts but it wasn’t available and I don’t know if it surfaced during the day though.
Here’s what I got and briefly what I thought about them:
Burnt toast – Such an amazing creation! This macaron was definitely what it was set out to be. It may have looked like an innocent macaron but once you bite into it, a darkish “burnt” filling reveals itself with a little nob of butter. Pure genius!
Cereal box – Made of crushed up cereals (I think it was cornflakes), it was kinda like eating cereal.
Chocolate banana – Dense chocolate ganache, couldn’t taste the banana though.
Chocolate smoked marshmallow – Here I was thinking the filling would be light and fluffy (as a marshamallow should be) but it wasn’t at all; it was kinda powdery and reminded me of red bean paste.
Choc Zumbo – You’d think that if Zumbo was to name a macaron after him that it would be something crazy right? So my initial thought was that the shells were coated with poprocks and that there would be more poprocks inside, unfortunately I was disappointed. The “poprocks” was crushed up toffee praline and I still don’t know what the filling was. If anyone has an idea could they please tell me what it is.
Cookie dough – My first thought was that it reminded me of an Anzac biscuit. Not too sweet, the filling was slightly chewy.
Fingerbun – Appearance of a finger bun with a coconut filling and pieces of raisins in it. It was ok.
Kalamata olive with candy – Ant and I are both olive lovers and had the same reaction as we bit into the macaron, it was an expression of “This is slightly odd..” The fact that it tasted like an olive was amusing. The candy provided some sweetness to this macaron.
Lamington – Exactly what I expected! This macaron tasted like a lamington! The chocolate icing was similar to how a lamington would taste like when first dipped into chocolate icing; you know, that liquid chocolate feeling.
Lollypops – What flavour could one expect from “lollypop”? A pretty blue macaron was placed on a lollypop stick and had poprocks in the ganache filling. Too bad it didn’t pop as much as I wanted it to; it was still fun regardless.
Lychee – Super sweet! I enjoyed the lychee jelly centre but other than that it was so sweet.
Peanut butter and jelly – Shared this with my sister and I’m glad that I did otherwise it would have been too gluggy due to the thick layer of peanut butter, a small piece of jelly provided something to cut through the peanut butter but I wished there was more of it though.
Pear, vanilla and macadamia – Sweet and very flavoursome. First thoughts was that I could taste the pear and vanilla. YUM!
Pecan danish – A piece of pecan hides amongst the sweet custard-like filling. This macaron has a very nutty flavour to it and reminds me of the sweet aromas you would experience in a patisserie (think almond crossiants).
Redskins – Possibly my favourite macaron of all time! My first bite transported me back to the primary school days. The texture of the filling was chewy and tasted extremely like redskins. I felt like a kid again.
Salted butter caramel – Once again, you can’t go wrong with salted caramel. So uber good!
Salted butter popcorn – Another pass favourite. The shells are coated with crushed popcorn and are filled with a slightly salty buttercream. I purchased 4 of these knowing that they’ll be greatly devoured.
The flavours that were on offer for the day were:
Blood and chocolate
Cherry azuki bean
Choc salt and vinegar
Choc smoked marshmallow
Cucumber mint yoghurt
Fish and chips
Kalamata olive with candy
Lemon verbena and mint
Pancake and maple syrup
Peanut butter and jelly
Pear vanilla and macadamia
Pineapple and coconut
Salt and vinegar
Salted butter caramel
Salted butter popcorn
Salted milk choc caramel
Sticky date pudding
Yoghurt chilli tangerine