252 Smith St, Collingwood
One does feel pity at times for Sunny’s Bakery. It is located on a super happening strip, filled with popular cafes and restaurants, but more significantly has to compete with N. Lee a few doors down. Establishing a large customer-base is very challenging when the nearest Vietnamese bakery receives all the limelight and has queues out the door every day. On a normal day it is near impossible to walk down Smith Street without someone chewing from a N.Lee labelled paper-bag. But Sunny’s keep their heads high.
I entered into a very clean space, with all the food and signs nicely presented. To continue with the comparison to N. Lee, I ordered the grilled pork – with an identical price tag – and was asked, “do you want everything?” Hell yeah! The pork was scooped from a massive pile; one downside about N. Lee is that they are always running out of hot pork. I bid goodbye to the cool staff and went outside to take photos when an older woman asked me if I was going to make a profit from the shots. “No, no, it’s just for my blog.” She went on to tell me how Sunny’s was her favourite bakery and that she goes there frequently. At the same time inside, the bakery was filling out a bit. Maybe I underestimated this place.
So, due to this anonymous woman, my expectations had risen dramatically and I had to focus extra hard on what I was eating. Immediately I noticed that the bread was not warm – this is minor as most places serve their rolls at room temperature – because I had been to N. Lee the day before. What followed was a satisfying banh mi. The pork was Cantonese roast style without the heaped fat and although lukewarm had a nice bite to it. The salad was fresh and crunchy. I especially liked the pickled carrots. Dressing-wise it was interesting. While its flavour was not overwhelming, the butter was too strong and mixed with the pate to form a taste resembling garlic bread. Don’t be put off by this, I’m a garlic freak and I hope you are too. If only Sunny’s had opened in a different area (namely mine) and didn’t have to compete with the mighty N. Lee (note: Trang Bakery is also on Smith Street and rules hard – review coming soon).