Originally published on Broadsheet.
House-made cakes are the specialty at this sibling-run south-side cafe.
“Our point of difference is mum’s baked cakes,” says Fabian Crea who, along with siblings Massimo and Romina Crea, runs Mr Tucci, a new cafe in Glen Iris. “She bakes almost every day.”
Fabian’s mother, Franca, bakes a few rotating specialities, such as an Italian sponge filled with lemon curd; carrot and pistachio cake; and a fig, pear and walnut loaf served with cinnamon butter.
In the more savoury zone, diners will find dishes such as sriracha-and-maple-glazed bacon, avocado and coriander on sourdough, and The Mr T Burger, filled with coffee-spiced beef brisket, slaw, Swiss cheese and house-made barbeque sauce.
The Crea siblings have run three eateries together, including Son of Tucci in Mount Waverley, Santucci’s Cafe in Camberwell and now-closed Santucci’s Carnegie, the latter of which the family operated for 23 years.
“We’re all locals and have lived in the south-east for a while,” says Fabian. “We look for areas we know well – and places we can relate to. It’s much easier when you know what the locals need.”
Coffee comes from two local roasters: Veneziano supplies the beans for milk coffee, and Wood and Co for black. North Melbourne’s Mörk has been enlisted for hot chocolate.
The Crea siblings designed the interior of Mr Tucci themselves. The high-ceilinged space is simple, with occasional design details such as a herringbone arrangement of black-glazed bricks.
Fabian bought the cafe’s 1950s Australian school chairs from an old church. They’ve been revamped with new plywood, and their steel frames finished with a black powder coat.
Speaking of seats, there’s not a bad one in the house – natural light pours into the cafe through a set of striking, ceiling-high windows, so no matter where you settle in, you’ll be happy.
10 High Street, Glen Iris
(03) 8840 8469
Mon to Fri 7am–3pm
Fri to Sun 8am–3pm
Photography: Elisa Watson.