By Ali Webb

    The inner west is full of surprises – both of the sweet and the savoury kind.

    So what do you do when your mate wants to catch up and it’s not brekky, brunch, lunch or tea time? You get snacking of course! Just like a good mate, snacks can come in all shapes, flavours and sizes. So here’s a check list to ensure you cover off even the fussiest of friends.

    The ‘I’ve-just-had-a- baby’ mate

    I’m going to be honest. The last thing you want someone to bring you when you’ve just gone through hours, perhaps days of strenuous childbirth is a baby bib – even if it’s a really pretty bib with cute baby lambs on it. We were given stacks of these things, but all I really wanted was a sweet, fattening, outrageously naughty snack. Something I could eat one handed whilst nursing my newborn and rest on my tracksuited thigh while I sipped on my cuppa. You need to hook your mate up with a good home cooked treat. Don’t cook? Look no further than Sammy’s Bakehouse in Newport for their custard bagels. At around $3.50 a pop, you can pick up half a dozen and watch your hungry parental pal gobble them up.

    Also good for: Interesting pastry filled treats such as the beef lasagna rolls.

    Warning: The custard insert is extraordinarily gooey and will sneak onto your shirt if you’re not quick enough to catch it with your tongue.

    Sammy’s Bakehouse, 1/22 Mason Street, Newport

    The ‘had-a-few-too-many-last-night’ mate

    Sometimes it’s great to kick back on a Friday eve, perhaps with your best colleagues and settle into a cozy bar. Have a sip on something nice, eat some chips and gently take your new found best friends to a karaoke bar to show off all your oozing confidence and talent for singing Taylor Dane. Then it’s Saturday and the guilt of telling your boss, in all your confident and highly attractive know-it-all splendor, that the word is ASK not ARKS settles in. You have two choices: bury that filthy head of yours under your Return of the Jedi quilt cover and wait until Daryl Sommers graces the small screen again OR raise your head high and march on down to Anderson Street in Yarraville, snap up a $5 kransky from Andrew’s Choice and be proud. You deserve to be. Not only have you saved yourself from further sharp intakes of breath every time your boss says ‘Just ARKS the question’, you’ve saved the whole office. You’re a genius. With a kransky. Let your Pepe le Pew nose guide you to the outdoor BBQ on the street.

    Also good for: Step inside the renowned butcher for an awesome selection of smallgoods, pastas and cheeses.

    Warning: Think before you eat. Wait one minute before biting into that cheese-filled smoky snag. It’s molten hot inside. Your relationship with your boss may be burnt, don’t let this happen to your chin. Best to arks for sauce.

    Andrew’s Choice, 24 Anderson Street, Yarraville. (Kransky’s are only cooked out the front on a Saturday morning).

    The ‘first-date’ mate

    It’s not really a date, so you have told yourself over and over again, but it kind of is. Because it’s just the two of you. You met through friends and those friends aren’t going to be with you this afternoon. It’s just you and the other person, your date. See. It’s a date. You’re going to Yarraville Gardens to hang out in the sun, watch the dogs run around and maybe have a little pash on your picnic rug. Perhaps you’re going to bring some music, a little Al Green to show off your sensitive-but-outrageously-groovy-not-to-hip side. The Food Trucks are resetting after a busy lunch, the servo across the road is demolished, the truck stop shop smells like potato cake oil. What are you going to do? Easy. Williamstown Farmer’s Market every second Sunday plays hosts to one of the best scroll makers in Victoria: Oregano Scrolls. Don’t let the name fool you, these kids have the locals in the know lining up from Dawn’s Crack to score one of their iconic Nutella and Banana scrolls ($6 each). Try the salted caramel scroll to show you are on trend or be a little different and show your affection for Australiana with the lamington scroll. Whatever you choose, be there before 11.30am as those scrolls are gonna roll out of there.

    Also good for: the stand next door sells fantastic strawberries (2 punnets for $8). Strawberries and scrolls = you little legend.

    Warning: Buy three scrolls and eat one in the car. Be careful as sharing can really suck in these situations.

    The ‘cruising-with-your-pooch’ mate

    Oh how good is the drive or the ride around the Western bayside, especially if you have your pooch right beside you, lapping up all the fresh air he can find. Enjoy it some more with seriously one of the best shakes in the inner west – the Apple Pie Shake from Candied Bakery in Spotswood. Combine your love of a home cooked window sill-styled pie with nutmeg and milk. Let the beautiful flavours shake around in your belly as you chase the seagulls away with your best mate.

    Also good for: grab a snack sized sausage roll, just in case. Candied won’t give me their recipe, but there’s something so good about their meaty roll that you just don’t need to add any sauce. Hide it from the pooch.

    Warning: the tart, cake and sweet selection is out of control. Plan your purchase based on how much pocket space you have.

    Join me on my snack journey at

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