Where Can You Get a Decent Pasty around Here?

We know Australians love their pies, we’ve talked about this before in my post Who Ate All the Pies? When you go to a baker’s here, you don’t so much see chilled cabinets jampacked with ready-made sandwiches, instead they have hot shelves stuffed with sausage rolls and pies.

Just one pie left in this baker’s…

Brumbys pieHard to see it, I know, but it’s in the red circle, honest.

So yes, they sell pies and sausage rolls, but no pasties.

You can’t even buy pasties from our major supermarkets; here is what happens if you search for ‘pasty’ in Woolworths…

WoolworthsYes, pasta products come top, not a good sign is it?

Back in the UK, these Ginster’s pasties are in almost all of the supermarkets like Waitrose, Tesco and Sainsbury’s straight from the shelves…

GinstersA Ginster isn’t just any old pasty though, it’s a “Cornish Pasty”. Cornish pasties are THE pasties and there is a whole industry in Cornwall busily making pasties, it’s a big business.

Who hid all the pasties?

In Australia though, it’s a different story. I’m not saying you can’t get a pasty in Oz, but is not easy. Certain farmers markets might have a stall that sells pasties and one or two speciality shops here and there may also sell them, like Britain on the Bayside here in Brisbane.

Britain on the BaysideThey, in turn, get them from Chumley Warner’s fish and chip shop, or fisho as we would call it here. My wife happened to be passing by the other weekend and very kindly bought two pasties for me…

My pasties (1)

My pastiesObviously I’ll only eat one at a time though.

So, I decided to look into this matter in greater depth.

My UK vs Australia pasty comparison experiment

Yes, it was time to put on my white apron again, go into the laboratory and get on with another one of my hugely scientific tests. I fired up my trusty PC and headed over to Google and punched in the search phrases…

  • Australian pasty
  • Cornish pasty

To put that into perspective for those who don’t know, I’m comparing a landmass of around 7.6 million square kilometres (Australia) with around 3500 square kilometres (Cornwall).

I got about 411,000 search results from Google for Cornish pasty and I wasn’t really expecting anything much at all from my search for Australian pasty, but was surprised to see about 292,000 results. And right there near the top was the headline “Australian Cornish pasty region concerned about protected …”

Australian Cornish pasty region? Where is this region?

The Australian Cornish pasty region

South Australia is the answer, and the concern apparently (back in 2011) was that the European Union (EU) were making a ruling that only pasties made in Cornwall could actually be called “Cornish pasties”. Fortunately for the people in South Australia, the EU ruling only covers Europe, so they can continue producing their Cornish pasty products without fear of the phone ringing late at night.

They can also continue with their biannual festival. Here’s what that looks like.

Kernewek Lowender – Biannual Cornish Festival, Moonta South Australia

Kernewek Lowender – Biannual Cornish Festival, Moonta South Australia from ABC Open Outback SA on Vimeo.

So, pasties are here, even Cornish pasties, you just need to find them.

I can tell you that my pasty meal was very nice…

My dinnerWhere do you get your pasties from? Let us know in the comments below.

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{ 54 comments… add one }
  • RelEngOz July 10, 2016, 2:35 pm | Link

    Ex South Australian here. Like many others, I too am on a constant search for a decent pasty wherever I find myself in Australia. In Perth at the moment and sadly I have not much to report although the Golden Bakery both in the CBD and at Osborne Park does a reasonable pasty. I suspect though that my standards are slipping with my last proper pasty having been eaten maybe 30 years ago! (with one exception – see below)
    I did return to Adelaide for a few days in 2014 and was determined to eat a good pasty. Consequently I headed to the Clarendon Bakery which was our family champion provider back in the 60’s. Got to the door to find that they were CLOSED on Monday and I was leaving the next day.
    So I headed for my second target – the Orange Spot at Glenelg which had also been a family haunt for many years. They had run out of cornish pasties so I had a regular meat and vegetable pasty and the memories came flooding back. Encased in a perfectly cooked puff pastry and with a well balanced filling, accompanied by an injection of house tomato sauce from the squirt bottle, it was heavenly. So, South Aussies, please don’t complain about your local champions – believe me you have the best choices in Australia.
    I note that Balfours are now exporting frozen pies and pasties through Woolworths to the whole of Australia. Sorry, but they aren’t the same as from the original 1950’s bakery on Cross Road. And even then they were only a middle of the road product in competition with the local specialist bakeries.

    • BobinOz July 10, 2016, 9:30 pm | Link

      I can’t even begin to imagine how crushing it would have been for you when that bakery was closed on Monday. You must have spiralled into despair when your second option had run out of Cornish pasties.

      It’s a heartbreaking story.

      But a story with a happy ending, you then landed yourself at regular meat and vegetable pasty and all was good.

      I love a story with a happy ending 🙂

      Hope for us all, wherever we are in Australia, of having out pasty needs met. Cheers, Bob

  • Keiran June 15, 2016, 8:46 pm | Link

    Hi Bob and all,
    We were in the same boat looking for a decent pasty in Australia. I have the fondest memories as a kid of my mum making the Cornish pasty (Recipe past down generations from our ancestors) for Saturday lunches. So some 40 years later we saw the gap in the market place in Victoria (none of the National bakehouses seem to really manage it) so we started our little Cornish pasty Company (Aussie Oggie Pasty Co,) here in Ballarat March 2016. We have had some esteemed Cornish association members give us the big thumbs up too and recently won a handful of awards at the Australian Bakers assoc pie/pastie comp. It seems we may have rattled a few cages with a National bakehouse oggie maker but we are very proud of our golden beauties. We also really admire Cousin Jacks in Sydney. If you are in the area please drop by and try one; they are the proper job!

    • Mark Bedford June 15, 2016, 8:49 pm | Link

      “We also really admire Cousin Jacks in Sydney. ” ahhh many thanks for the compliment Keiran 🙂 we try hard like you.

      • BobinOz June 15, 2016, 11:53 pm | Link

        Fantastic! More pasties. I may have to go on a pasty tour of Australia. Congratulations on opening your pasty business Keiran, I hope it works out well.

  • Mark Bedford March 29, 2016, 9:46 am | Link

    and you can see how we make them here:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvmwrXWbiPM

    P.S yes the Parsley is purely optional.

  • Mark Bedford March 29, 2016, 9:45 am | Link
    • ALLAN TRENERRY March 29, 2016, 9:52 am | Link

      Have been told your Cousin Jacks are the real deal, but as you are in Sydney & I am in Adelaide, just a bit hard to pop out for one. Have made a promise next time we are in Sydney to give your pasties a go.. Also the Wallaroo/Kadina/Copper triangle area make the real deal but a 3 hr drive each way for lunch is just a bit beyond reality. Mum’s were always the best though!!!!

  • Harold Mattner March 27, 2016, 4:04 pm | Link

    The bakery at 83 Jetty Road, Brighton, Sth. Aust. Phone 83580888 have great

    pasties and Kitchener buns. If they did enter that Australian Pastie competition

    they would probably go close to winning it as they have plenty of “innards” with

    minimal pastry, unlike the Orange spot pasties.

    • ALLAN TRENERRY March 29, 2016, 9:41 am | Link

      Remember we are talking true “CORNISH” pasties in this conversation. There are a lot of ordinary pasties of reasonable quality out there, but not our TRUE Cornish ones.
      Cheers

      Orange spot ones are less than average, and they DO NOT make cornish pasties.

  • Mark Bedford January 4, 2016, 7:53 pm | Link

    Been making proper job Cornish Pasties for 3 years now, have a gander at this vid: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhhQk6xs-rM

  • Morish Cornish November 4, 2015, 5:03 am | Link

    Hey Bob, The best, most authentic, hand crafted, ‘proper’ Cornish Pasties you can get in Australia are on sale weekly at Noosa Farmers Market on the Sunshine Coast QLD!!! No peas or carrots in sight, beautiful hand made shortcrust pastry and proper chunks of beef skirt (definitely not minced!!), lovingly made by a real Cornish man (and woman!) 😉 https://www.facebook.com/MorishCornish/

    • BobinOz November 4, 2015, 4:45 pm | Link

      Even if you do say so yourself 🙂

      Next time I’m up that way I’ll swing by and grab one. Cheers, Bob

  • Sydney ex Adelaide August 23, 2015, 4:44 pm | Link

    The ~$4 Cornish pasties in Adelaide generally use beef mince. The Vilis & Balfours ones would be machine crimped too but the others are usually done by hand. They do have the peas and other veggies. Obviously you can pay more too. And you can definitely get the ‘proper’ beef skirt ones too with a bit more looking.

    For something different you could try a pie floater at the pie cart in Adelaide after a night out, or a Ned Kelly pie the next morning for the hangover – with a Farmers Union Iced Coffee of course!

    Will have to check out the place at Bondi next time I am there. Came across this page looking for pies, pasties & sausage rolls for my son’s first birthday! Not finding much 🙁

    Re the search you did – you may have better hits with pasties not pasty – which has other connotations because eastern states people pronounce it the ‘wrong’ way.

    Happy eating! Oh, and what are people’s thoughts on Aussie tomato sauc?

    • BobinOz August 23, 2015, 8:09 pm | Link

      Ned Kelly pies? I’m not sure what to make of that, surely they are not made out of Ned Kelly meat? 🙂

      I am a brown sauce man myself, Aussies don’t do that at all, do they? If you ask, you’ll just get barbecue sauce.I buy English HP sauce. My daughter likes tomato sauce, but we get Heinz. Whenever we get tomato sauce sachets when out though, chip shops, fast food places, it pretty much taste the same.

      What do you think of it then?

  • Nostalgic for a decent pasty August 7, 2015, 8:11 pm | Link

    I lived in Adelaide until I was 8 years old and have very nostalgic memories of delicious Cornish pasties which I can never find to match up anywhere else (and yes Kitchener buns too, as well as frog cakes, and fritz!). I have lived in Brisbane since 1982 and drive my husband crazy talking about the pasties of my youth. If anyone could direct me to a decent pasty in Brisbane I would be very grateful.

    • BobinOz August 7, 2015, 9:26 pm | Link

      Well you can try that place I mention above in my article over at Bayside, I am not a pasty connoisseur, but they didn’t taste too bad to me. Worth a go and if you do try, do let us know what you think.

  • The Cornish Pasty Company August 7, 2015, 10:45 am | Link

    I doubt very much that the Cornish Pasties offered for $4 in SA are the real deal, as many are aware real Cornish pasties contain beef skirt which is approx $12/kg wholesale for us to buy in bulk, this coupled with labour would send the product well over $5ea unless they are machine crimped or they use beef mince both of which are totally unacceptable to be marketed as Cornish Pasties.
    The Cornish Pasty Man has ceased trading about a month ago, he serviced the Brisbane area.

    • BobinOz August 7, 2015, 9:23 pm | Link

      Is that right? The Cornish Pasty Company is no more? I never knew. As for the rest of it, this is in the domain of cooking, I know nothing. I’ll take your word for it 🙂

  • Pete August 6, 2015, 11:57 am | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Like Adelaide Girl mentioned, they are mostly a South Australian item. This is due to Cornish people settling the Copper Triangle mining region in SA (Moonta, Kadina, Wallaroo). They are very common in SA bakeries and pretty good too (around $4 each) . In saying that I’ve never been to Cornwall though!.
    I moved to Brisbane a few years ago and they are pretty much non existent up here just like Kitchener Buns (check them out when your in SA) but I’ll be sure to check out some of the places mentioned above.

    • BobinOz August 6, 2015, 6:37 pm | Link

      Hi Pete,

      Yes, the video above was taken at that Moonta Festival, not that I’ve been. You can get pasties here in Brisbane, as I mentioned in the article, there’s that shop over at Bayside, and somebody told me there is The Cornish Pasty Man somewhere in Brisbane city centre.

      Now I’ve got to go and Google Kitchener Buns 🙂

  • smorgs July 19, 2015, 11:36 am | Link

    Hi Gary/Bob.
    Please have a look at our facebook/website we like to look after the locals ….☺
    http://www.facebook.com/kernowplumbing
    Iam mates with a local Perth butcher who may be interested in stocking a “Proper Pasty”

    • BobinOz July 20, 2015, 12:36 am | Link

      I’ve got some taps in an outside toilet that simply won’t open. They are stuck shut. It is just up the road from you a bit, Brisbane. Can you pop round and fix them for me?

      Got a carton of beer waiting 🙂

  • Neville July 19, 2015, 10:41 am | Link

    My favorite is mcleods pasties in broken hill a must try with a lathering of tomato sauce if ever passing through als villi’s pasties in South aust as well are nice

    • BobinOz July 20, 2015, 12:32 am | Link

      I certainly will give one of those pasties a try, all I have to do now is wait until I’m next passing through Broken Hill 🙂

      It could be a while.

    • Ivan September 19, 2015, 3:49 pm | Link

      I’ll second that Neville…I grew up in the ‘Hill and though they may not be Cornish ‘certified’, they’re still my family’s favourite. Like many expat Broken Hillites, I also drag a spare Esky along for the McLeod’s pasties whenever we get the chance to visit. Although they’re now Mac’s Oven Foods, the pasties are still pretty much the same (and are still ‘McLeod’s’ pasties to most people).

      I even grew Trombone (squash) in the backyard this year to try to recreate the recipe with some of the original ingredients from when a couple of high school mates and I worked at McLeod’s on Saturday mornings in the early ’70’s. We’d start at 5, wash and trim the vegies, roll the dough, assemble the pasties, then wait for morno’s and fight for the best one’s (those that hadn’t quite sealed properly and leaked a little, thus having that little extra appeal…..

  • Gary Norris June 20, 2015, 9:46 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Just started the Cornish Pasty Company up on the Sunshine Coast, going gangbusters, need to find pro active distributors that can deliver my product all around Australia.

    • BobinOz June 23, 2015, 12:18 am | Link

      If you put more information online somewhere about how that would work Gary, I’d be happy for you to post a link here. Who knows, something might come of it. Good luck, Bob

  • Oz May 14, 2015, 5:17 pm | Link

    Hey Bob. Love yer stuff mate. Echoing Smorgs in hunt for pasties here in WA. I will dig around and search and will let you know what i come up with.

    • BobinOz May 14, 2015, 6:55 pm | Link

      Thanks Oz. Sounds like the WA pasty hunt is on 🙂

  • smorgs May 9, 2015, 9:43 pm | Link

    Any decent kernow pastys in Perth WA ?

    • BobinOz May 10, 2015, 8:49 pm | Link

      I would be shocked if you couldn’t get a decent pasty in Perth, but I will defer to the locals on this. Anyone from over that way know where smorgs can get a decent pasty?

    • Mark June 21, 2016, 10:46 pm | Link

      hi mate do you know where we can get a quality pastie in Perth we been trying for months . Thanks

      • BobinOz June 23, 2016, 12:27 am | Link

        No, I don’t know, but I’m in Brisbane.

        I’m really surprised nobody has chimed in with a decent pasty place in Perth yet, but hopefully someone will soon. Anybody in Perth know where you can get a decent pasty?!

  • ALLAN TRENERRY April 7, 2015, 4:59 pm | Link

    Bob
    Have found details of a newish shop in Sydney called Cousin Jacks Pasty Co at Bondi Junction, that claims to sell the REAL item. Their web site certainly looks like they do, so has anybody out there tried or sampled this product. If good & probably in any case, next time I am in Sydney I will track ’em down & give them a go. Will also have to recommend them to the rellies in Sydney town.

    Allan

    • BobinOz April 7, 2015, 7:00 pm | Link

      Anybody tried a Cousin Jacks pasty? If anyone lives in the area and fancies giving one a go, maybe you could let us know what they are like. Perhaps if your rellies try them out, they can let us know Allan?

      Cheers, Bob

  • ALLAN March 29, 2015, 2:14 pm | Link

    Hi. Living in Adelaide all my life & having had “genuine” Cornish pasties for many years, made by Mum & later my cousin through her church fund raising pasty-bake, I have recently been trying to buy one, as those previous supplies have now dried up. While many bakeries offer a “Cornish Pasty” none of them are true to form and have flaky pastry, corn, peas, hard carrots & very little so called meat. The only place you can really get a good one is in the Cornish Triangle. Just a bit far from the city for a snack!!

    Sad to see that even BUNG FRITZ is disappearing now…

    What is the world coming to.

    • BobinOz March 29, 2015, 11:03 pm | Link

      You’re lucky Allan, the Cornish Triangle may be a bit far from the city for you, I’m assuming you mean Adelaide, but for me it’s probably about 20 hours each way by car!

      Maybe you need to grab a recipe off of one of your relos and start cooking 🙂

  • Adelaide girl January 23, 2015, 11:17 pm | Link

    It must be an eastern states issue, not being able to find good pasties, Cornish or ordinary. Here in SA, most bakeries will have them, and I know that Woolies stocks fresh pasties from two local commercial bakeries – Balfours and Vili’s, so likely Coles and Foodland would too.

    Maybe it’s a cultural heritage thing? Like how SA is the only state to have Bung Fritz?

    • BobinOz January 27, 2015, 4:01 pm | Link

      Yes, I’m beginning to think that it is, seems everyone can get hold of pasties except me, although I do now know a few places where I can source them thanks to some tips from readers.

      Right, I’m off to Google Bung Fritz…

  • David December 30, 2014, 12:20 pm | Link

    Re pasties
    I have yet to find a bakery here in Victoria that doesn’t sell hot pasties (late in the day could be a problem!). They vary in taste. I haven’t had any that are distasteful, but certainly have had some that aren’t as flavoursome as I would have expected. Having said that, the best I have tasted are from Huey’s Bakehouse at Scoresby Village shops in the eastern suburbs (they regularly rank high in the entries in the annual Victorian pastie competition). I hasten to add I have no connection to the business other than as satisfied customer.

    Re fish and chips
    Finding good fish and chips is hard in Melbourne but they must exist. Most shops produce pretty ordinary fish and chips. Some have fish cut so thin that I swear they would be transparent if held up to light. It must come down to the oil used and freshness of the oil. I don’t bother with the two fish and chip shops local to where I live.

    • BobinOz December 30, 2014, 8:33 pm | Link

      Yes, as others have said as well, pasties are more popular down south, especially in South Australia and Victoria. As much as I like pasties, I’m not tempted to move down that way though, I’m going to stick with Queensland 🙂

      We used to have a good fish and chip shop down the road, but it got sunk during the 2011 floods, never reopened after that. Shame, it was one of the few places around here where you could get decent fish and chips.

      Fresh fish from the supermarket though is, dare I say it, cheap as chips, and pretty tasty too. So I now use my wife’s fish and chip shop in the kitchen 🙂

  • John December 4, 2014, 8:24 pm | Link

    Bob, pasties, Cornish or otherwise are more popular in SA & Victoria. They can sometimes be found here in Newcastle NSW, but they’re pretty ordinary imitations to be fair. The sausage roll or ‘rat coffin’ as it is fondly referred to here, is more common. God only knows what goes into those things! 🙂

    • BobinOz December 5, 2014, 10:05 pm | Link

      Rat coffin, that’s very good 🙂 Yes, we have rows and rows of sausage rolls in most bakers here, interesting to hear that pasties are a little more popular down your way. Who knows what goes into any of these things, I find it’s best not to think about it too much.

      I saw a video about how they make hotdogs not too long ago, haven’t had one since.

    • Jack March 6, 2015, 9:29 am | Link

      John, Just read your comment of Dec 4th 2014, where in Newcastle can I find a good Cornish pastie please ?

  • djmcbell November 20, 2014, 6:24 pm | Link

    Reminds me of when I was in America once and got a leaflet through the door (we were staying in a villa) for “authentic British take-away” – you could order fish and chips, pie, and even a full Sunday roast! Prices were extortionate though.

    • BobinOz November 21, 2014, 10:16 pm | Link

      Mrs Bob only paid about $12 for the two pasties you see above, I didn’t think that was bad. If I remember rightly they were £3.00 for one in the UK seven years ago.

      • djmcbell November 27, 2014, 7:30 pm | Link

        £3? That’s a bit of a rip-off. The local market (admittedly quite a big one) has a bakers which I regularly go to and get a pretty large cornish pasty from there for £1. Or the Pound Bakery and get two (admittedly not large, and not cornish) pasties for £1.

        Hmm… maybe a business idea. Imagine a pasty, chips and mushy peas or gravy. Or a pasty, chilli and chips (chips with chilli on top, and sometimes some melted cheese too is great).

        • BobinOz November 28, 2014, 10:30 pm | Link

          When you haven’t had something for that long, £3 is a bargain. Even the Ginster pasties are £1.40 from the supermarket in the UK, this pasty was much better than that.

  • Nick Clark November 20, 2014, 10:00 am | Link

    I haven’t had a pasty since moving to Oz, let alone a Cornish pasty.

    However a British fish and chip shop has recently opened in the suburb of Wollongong that I live in, and they do sell pasties. I have t had one yet, but if this fish and chips are anything to go by it will be beautiful. They do the best fish and chips in Australia in my humble British experience.

    • BobinOz November 20, 2014, 5:12 pm | Link

      Then I suspect you will be returning to that fish and chip shop soon Nick and sampling one of their fresh pasties. I’ll be interested to hear what you think of it if you get the chance.

      Incidentally, you say British fish and chip shop, but here in Queensland I have yet to find a fish and chip shop which has everything already cooked and waiting to be sold. Every fish and chip shop I’ve been into you place your order and then you wait for them to cook it from fresh, even the chips.

      In the UK you could walk into a fish and chip shop and the chips would already be cooked and the fish would be in the hot cabinet waiting to go.

      I’m wondering if it’s some kind of regulation here in Australia, but what happens in the chip shop in Wollongong?

      Cheers, Bob

  • Julie Brown November 20, 2014, 3:57 am | Link

    I’m a Cornish lass Bob, I’m emigrating next year to the Sunshine Coast…maybe I should start a business.

    • BobinOz November 20, 2014, 4:50 pm | Link

      Hey, why not? I assume you can cook Julie 🙂

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