Birley Bakery, the latest venture of the well-known club-owner Robin Birley, takes its inspiration from the traditional boulangerie-pâtisseries which though, at one time, ubiquitous in every city, town and village of France, have now all but disappeared from French life. This bakery, however, isn’t just an exercise in nostalgia: the maître pâtissier, Vincent Zanardi, and his head baker, Eshak Belabed, have devised especially a selection of breads, cakes and viennoiseries for the new shop. Their recipes, some of which have taken as long as five years to be brought to perfection, are a more contemporary twist on the classics once found in those much missed boulangerie-pâtisseries. All the bread and cakes at the bakery are made from exceptional ingredients, these sourced from around the globe: the wheat flour comes from an artisanal farmer in Burgundy, the sea salt from La Guérande in Brittany, the plump almonds from Valencia, and the thick dark honey from hives in Bermondsey. A special reserve of bitter chocolate, created specifically for Birley, and mixed with cacao beans from the Philippines, forms the basis of our range of chocolates.
In the time-honoured tradition of the finest boulangeries, the different breads and viennoiseries are baked on the premises throughout the day; and the pâtisseries, cakes, and biscuits are brought in twice daily from our purpose-built kitchen in Battersea. There is a selection of homemade ice-creams and sorbets in the same subtle flavours as are to be found in Robin’s clubs; and Vincent Zanardi and his team of chefs have also worked to develop a selection of delicious vegan delicacies to entice the palate without compromising dietary requirements.
Birley Bakery is situated on Chelsea Green, a location which has become home to some of the finest specialist food shops in central London. The shop’s interior has been hand-painted with depictions of fantastical birds in a style reminiscent of the exotic fin-de-siécle tea-house, and is designed as much to delight the eye as to satisfy the appetite.