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Dessert oasis: second sweet spot for Rundle St after East End exodus

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South Australian franchise St Louis House of Fine Ice Cream and Dessert will replace the shuttered Max Brenner store on Rundle Street – the second dessert café to open in the East End since an exodus of chocolate shops from the precinct last year.

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St Louis founder George Karamalis hopes to open the store in time for the beginning of the Adelaide Fringe festival next month.

He applied for a liquor licence for the planned Rundle Street outlet on Tuesday after having registered a new corporate entity – Rundle Street Dessert Bar Pty Ltd – at the start of January.

It follows a clear-out of Rundle Street dessert cafés last year. Max Brenner, Cocolat and San Churro each closed their doors, and Steven ter Horst revealed he planned to move his fine chocolate shop into the suburbs.

But the San Churro company has since reopened the East End store – and St Louis began advertising for employees for the planned Rundle Street outlet on social media last week.

Karamalis told InDaily he believes “there’s a big future for Rundle Street”.

“Yes, there’s been some closures … (but) we’re confident knowing that we can provide a product,” he said.

“We’re also confident knowing that the landlords are prepared to work with the tenants to work through challenging times.”

St Louis marketing manager Jessica Gerardis told InDaily this morning that Rundle Street was going through a period of renewal and that St Louis was excited to be part of it.

She noted the opening of Betty’s Burgers and that Mediterranean restaurant Brunelli’s Cafe had undergone a major renovation.

“I think there’s a lot of potential for the street – it’s just gone through a rough patch,” she said.

“We’re just really excited to be moving in.”

She said the Rundle Street store would offer a “point of difference” from San Churro and from other similar stores that had traded there in the past, through its French-style luxury dessert offerings.

The St Louis franchise began in 2012 with a store on Gouger Street.

Since then it has opened five stores in Adelaide – not counting Rundle Street – and a store in Manila, in the Philippines.

It produces ice-cream and other dessert products for its South Australian stores each day from a factory in Tapleys Hill.

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