A Sütis offers simple and delicious desserts, modern yet retro – and instantly Instagrammable. Overseen by János Hegedűs, aka Gianni, this recently opened outlet makes a wonderful addition to Budapest’s confectionery scene, a few steps from the Danube and popular summer picnic spot, Nehru part.
János Hegedűs, nicknamed Gianni, reckons he’s a typical quarantine entrepreneur.
Although becoming a confectioner crossed his mind as a child, he eventually enrolled
at catering school. His previous job lasted ten years, four months as head chef
at Budai Gesztenyés, a restaurant manager
for the rest.
As he told us, it was there that he learned how to build a brand. In 2020, like many working in hospitality, Gianni had to start looking for a new way to make an income.
First, he played with the idea of creating a business around premium-quality biscuits... The second plan was more feasible – since everyone in the industry calls him Gianni, he established a confectionery brand named Gianni’s Sweet Heaven. The public first tasted his treats at Pancs market last spring, his babkas proving particularly popular.
The former strudel shop they rented as a workspace now functions as a confectionery under the name A Sütis (‘The Cake Place’). They are constantly expanding the range, primarily with classic, evergreen desserts.
Classic Hungarian confectionery
“I don’t have a diploma in confectionery, but I
have high-level catering qualifications allowing me to run my own dessert shop.
Fancy puffy cakes are not my style, and what we offer here reflects my
interests and preferences, as well as what I can do the best. Chance also plays
a big role – one of our most popular desserts, the chestnut roll, was
originally stocked because I happened to have a lot of chestnuts at the time. Since
they all vanished without a trace in a day, I decided to make them a permanent
feature at A Sütis.”
After his debut at Pancs
market, Gianni started getting requests from cafés and smaller stores who
wanted to offer his products, too – last summer, they appeared at Boldog Föld, at Pékesség, as
well as at both the Pancs market and store.
Gianni was forced to remodel his business after the lockdown in November, to make space for a small takeaway corner. The revamped store opened in mid-January and, despite the rush, it turned out neat and stylish, a combination of blue and natural wood, a lively wallpaper and rustic wooden columns from his granddad’s farm.
The counter is usually lined with around 15-20 types of desserts, everything from scones to flódni layered cake, honey cream cake, chestnut rolls and the heavenly Hungarian confectionery Somlói. Although these are traditional, classic treats, there are a few modern twists and surprises in Gianni’s creations, all made with care and attention to detail.
Two types of scone (380 HUF/100gr) can be found on
any day, ranging from cheese to ones with goose liver – on our visit, we tried the
cheese-and-onion and dried-tomato varieties.
Plenty of different rolls also feature, the classic ones perfectly accompanying coffee for breakfast, but the pistachio (660 HUF) and chocolate (550 HUF) are also delicious. Flódni (750 HUF), with a half-walnut on top, is a sweet layered cake from the Ashkenazi Jewish canon, similar to the classic Magyar zserbó, which also comes in traditional (600 HUF) as well as pistachio (750 HUF) flavours.
They also have a
large stock of strudel (500 HUF), with around four to five types available
each day, apple, cottage-cheese, cherry and other fine ingredients. Instead of
the Hungarian versions, Gianni makes Viennese strudels with crispy, flaky puff
The honey cream cake (600 HUF) is made with an orange-flavoured cream, topped off with cocoa powder. The orange carrot cake (650 HUF) is completely flour-free, while the Somlói (600 HUF), served in a fancy glass, and is just as tasty as you’d expect it to be.
After the lockdown, Gianni is planning to place a couple of chairs near the entrance, but A Sütis won’t be a proper sit-down place. As he says, the Danube and Nehru Part are just across the road – in good weather, they’re the best places to enjoy a coffee with something sweet.
District IX. Közraktár utca 22
Open: Mon 10am-6pm, Wed-Sat 9am-6pm, Sun 9am-2pm