Ben Williamson & Audi Centre Brisbane

Brisbane hosts an abundance of culinary delights and in a city with such an enormous offering, being unique is no easy feat.

Audi Centre Brisbane is delighted to welcome Mr Ben Williamson to the Audi family with his all-new Audi Q5 Sportback. Ben is the Head Chef and Co-Owner of many top award-winning Brisbane Restaurants including Agnes, Bianca, Honto, SameSame and now Agnes Bakery.

Agnes Bakery is the latest instalment, and it interestingly came about due to necessity. Ben comments, “with Agnes Restaurant a week from opening its doors when the pandemic took hold, we needed to find a way to keep our staff employed. We were testing sourdough for the restaurant menu at the time, so the logical step was to bake in the woodfired oven as retail seemed to still a viable option.”

The line up to the pop-up Bakery during Covid lockdowns made news headlines, at times lapping the entire city block with its evenly spaced lines of red tape.

Ben says that if it wasn’t for this, he doesn’t believe they’d ever considered the bakery. Nestled in its new permanent home – a heritage cottage in Fortitude Valley designed by local architects, Richards and Spence.

Agnes Bakery offers a range of woodfired breads and pastries. From fresh sourdough, mouth-watering baked goods including kouign-amanns, Basque cheesecake and doughnuts and of course, coffee.

Everything from the bread to the pastries are cooked in a locally made, four-tonne Beech oven using a combination of local ironbark and bakers oak wood, “you can taste the love and care in every bite.” One of the concepts Agnes Bakery started to explore more is how the use of fire applies to working with ancient and sustainably grown grains, and how it can add to the complexity of flavours in sourdough and pastries, both sweet and savoury.

So, what is it that makes Ben’s approach to cooking so innovative? “I would say our innovation is counter intuitive. By taking a back-to-basics approach to the product, doing as much as possible by hand and only cooking with wood fire as a medium has given us an edge in the market.”