“Think of the lolly shop of your childhood dreams, substitute herbs and spices and you’re at Gewürzhaus.”

Cooking is one of the many activities that could be described as uniquely human. Throughout history, cooking has defined cultures and provided the foundation upon which humanity has nourished its collective body, mind and spirit. Furthermore, cooking specifically from the home and the heart has proven to be a successfully integral means through which familial traditions are preserved. Consider your own family for a moment. Some of your fondest and most vivid memories are likely related to food. Smells and flavours are very powerful, with the ability to swiftly and precisely transport one to the sensory and emotional energy of a past culinary experience. Take, for example, sisters Maria and Eva Konecsny. Through cooking, the traditions of four generations of women in their family are very much alive today. The Konecsnys’ fond memories stretch all the way back to great-grandmother Oma Rosa, who was a baker by trade, and to grandmother Oma Liesel, the person responsible for introducing the sisters to the joys of cooking and for showing them the kitchen ropes, so to speak. This rich epicurean heritage – characterised by family meals imbued with the perfect amount of care, love and courage – along with the recollections of spice-filled German Christmases, inspired the sisters and their mother, Gabi, to open their first store. This store would soon reveal itself as a heartfelt gift to the local Melbourne food scene, a destination for both home cooks and commercial chefs, alike. Welcome to Gewürzhaus.

Established in 2010, Gewürzhaus – meaning “spice house” in German – makes the highest quality, no-nasties spice blends and sources the finest herbs and spices from around the world to inspire and nurture home cooking, first and foremost. Maria and Eva are extraordinarily clear about their mission: Gewürzhaus exists to inspire and nurture cooking at home by offering a wide range of high-quality ingredients to encourage customers to create new recipes and traditions to cherish for generations to come. The stores, now numbering 11 and spanning across Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Canberra, offer more than 350 single-origin spices, herbs, salts, peppers, teas and sugars from across the globe. Over 100 unique small-batch blends, exclusive to Gewürzhaus, are mixed and milled from whole ingredients on a weekly basis in Melbourne. This ensures freshness and the highest of quality. Aside from the pleasantly rich and aromatic essences with which the physical spaces are steeped, the stores’ true beauty lies within the interactive, pay-by-weight self-service. ‘The Age Epicure’ describes the retail experience perfectly: “Think of the lolly shop of your childhood dreams, substitute herbs and spices and you’re at Gewürzhaus.” As well, it very much suffices to say that if you cannot find what you are looking for here, then chances are you will not be able to find it anywhere.

Gewürzhaus, Melbourne


Gewürzhaus, Melbourne


Gewürzhaus, Melbourne


Of course, with the holiday season quickly approaching, the Konecsny sisters urge home cooks everywhere to fill your home with the aromas of Christmas baking and share that festive feeling. Consider gingerbread spice, St. Nicholas spekulaas (the essential ingredient in the crunchy, golden biscuits made in The Netherlands and neighbouring countries for St. Nicholas Day), Christmas cake and pudding spice and the Bakers’ Spice Kit as perfect places to start. If general cooking inspiration is required or the desire to differentiate this year’s offerings takes hold, the Gewürzhaus website is a robust resource for tried-and-true recipes. Tender fennel roasted pork with ultimate crackling, glazed Christmas ham, festive ribeye roast, gingerbread-spiced trifle with poached pears and gingerbread caramel and Marie’s German Christmas gewürzkuchen (spice cake) are but a few of the varied and mouth-watering recipes available to help make this holiday season one like no other. Needless to say, it is never too early to get a jump on end-of-year celebrations. Visit one of Gewürzhaus’ local retail stores and surrender yourself to sugar and spice and all things nice. Stores are located in Lygon Street, Carlton, the Block Arcade, Queen Victoria Market, South Melbourne Market and Chadstone.  

Lifestyle & Design

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