For Pierre Issa, founder of Sydney butter-maker Pepe Saya, the better the butter, the better the salted caramel – he should know, he’s spent years perfecting the recipe for his salted caramel bon bons, the latest addition to Pepe Saya’s product line. It’s been crafted in Sydney’s inner west, by artisan chocolatier Adora, using Pepe Saya’s robust cultured butter and Olsson’s sea salt flakes.
“The true flavour of our cultured butter comes out when you cook with it, whether it is baking, patisserie, cooking an egg on a Sunday morning or making salted caramels,” Issa tells Broadsheet. “The caramel brings out the true flavour of our butter. So now I can carry a taste of Pepe Saya butter around in my pocket.”
The bon bons are available in two flavours: an original salted caramel and a chocolate salted caramel. Both are rich in buttery flavour. And there’s only 250 boxes of 10 available each week.
Pepe Saya’s butter wheels have been made using Olsson’s salt since the beginning. Issa says it was a natural fit to develop a salted caramel with the family-owned company, which was founded in Western Sydney.
“Every salted wheel is still made with a mix of the sea salt and dairy salt,” says Issa. “We have always worked together and are always developing ideas or sharing stories. Years ago we first dreamt up making a salted caramel – what we saw as the one product that truly encapsulated both our products. We would test them at home and share them with each other, with Mrs Pepe making the first attempt with Olsson’s smoked salt. We use Olsson's sea salt flakes in the caramels and every caramel is sprinkled with salt for the perfect rounded finish.”
The rich, deep flavour of the batch-churned butter shines in the salted caramels, with the salt offsetting the sweetness of the caramel.
And working with Adora to craft the bon bons was also a natural fit – the chocolatier has been using Pepe Saya butter in its truffles for years.
“Pepe was doing a delivery to them one morning last year and saw just how their team make their beautiful products,” says Issa. “He knew they were the perfect fit to bring our dream to life. We worked closely with Tina [Angelidis] at Adora to develop our salted caramel recipe. Adora share the same values as us, using local produce and artisanal techniques.”
The vintage-style boxes were designed by Australian artist Michael Wholley. Each box features an illustration of a cat – a nod to the fact that every buttery Issa and Pepe Saya co-founder Melissa Altman have visited around the world has a resident feline.
Pepe Saya’s bon bons come in boxes of 10. They’re $19.95 for the original flavour and $24.95 for chocolate, and available online via Pepe Saya and Olsson’s.