Toffee Cafe is a tiny cafe in Equus Arcade which is easy to miss but you’ll be the one missing out if don’t stop by. With very friendly service, the cafe is open for breakfast and lunch and serves coffee, pretzel rolls, croissant, and German dishes (like goulash and sausages) including daily specials. I visited for lunch and chose the daily special of smoked German chop with sauerkraut and mashed potato, an iced coffee, and an apple slice. I chose takeaway and my meal turned out to be the perfect winter warmer. A delicious tender pork chop was balanced by the slight acidity of the sauerkraut and who doesn’t love creamy mash? Add them all together with the gravy and each bite is just yum yum yum! For the price, this is unbeatable value as a lunchtime option. Having a sweet tooth, it was hard to resist the German apple slice which caught my eye in the display cabinet. I saved this for the 3 o’clock hump and it’s just like a crumble. A lovely delicious sweet treat to get me through the rest of the day. Mmm… Definitely will be coming back to try some of the other menu items.
Varsity Burgers is the sister shop to Varsity Bar in Nedlands. They serve American style burgers and snack food and are open quite late for that late night meal. They’re situated at the base of an apartment complex and there’s plenty of seating inside and out. I chose the Texan Burger, a double cheeseburger with bacon and BBQ sauce. First bite in and all I can taste is meaty goodness, meat juices, gooey American cheese, the salty hit of bacon, and the crunch from the onions. The beef patty is quite tasty and all the ingredients meld together to form a very delicious burger. It takes a while to eat through all of that but one leaves full and satisfied. The pickle provides some acidity to cut through all that fat! It’s uncomplicated food that just does the job. You have to indulge every now and then.
Clarke’s of North Beach presents a soft warm ambience to enjoy the fine dining experience on offer. I opted for the 6 course degustation which started with an amuse bouche of a delicious crunchy mushroom croquette finished off with a sandalwood smoke. The very lightly marinated swordfish presented delicate flavours paired with the char from the octopus. Sous vide chicken was the next dish to arrive which presents a very different texture to what one is used to, but the tender succulent breast is delicious with the crisp skin attached. The deep fried skin is too intense and leaves a burnt taste in the mouth which detracts from the dish. However, the sweetcorn veloutte is brilliant and so delicious, perfect for winter. Lamb backstrap was the hero of the next course, also sous vide, succulent, tender, and the lamb flavour is a little more intensified than usual which is excellent. There’s plenty of flavoursome jus to tip over and enjoy and the parsley sponge helps to mop up the jus that you can’t get onto the cutlery. The coffee crumb and beets help balance the meaty flavour and the fatty flavours from the lamb riblet are excellent. Pre-dessert presented a tonka bean pudding which is small in stature but very rich with the sticky golden syrup. However, the vanilla anglaise is a wonderful addition and partners perfectly to offset the richness and make this into a very satisfying dish. The last course presents rhubarb compote which has a touch of sweetness and acidity to contrast against the very creamy panna cotta. The rhubarb sorbet also cuts through the richness and is refreshing to the palette. A finely crafted and well thought out menu with elements that compliment each other and deliver a wonderful dining experience.
Porkies Barbque is an authentic American barbecue meats eatery headed by two Perth chefs with North American roots and plenty of experience eating and cooking barbecued meats. There are a range of American items to choose from the menu (beef brisket, pulled pork, chicken, ribs, meat platters), including sides (like mac & cheese), desserts, and drinks. I opted for the pulled pork which was moist, juicy and succulent and is perfectly prepared. There’s a lovely flavour from the smoking process, however, the pulled pork is served plain. There’s 3 house sauces at the table to help yourself to, to add the much needed flavour addition and bring out the genius of the pulled pork. I preferred the sweet BBQ sauce, but the boom boom sweet & tangy has a nice kick too. The fried onions and bread allow you to make sandwiches and it goes down a treat. The meat selections also come with a side and there are plenty to choose from. With a sweet tooth, I chose the peach cobbler. I’ve never eaten this before but all I can say is oh yum! A very unique taste, lovely soft peaches down the bottom, delicious cobbler, a little rich at times but the scoop of vanilla ice cream does the trick. Excellent way to finish the meal.
Walk into the spacious open restaurant and be greeted by the friendly staff before sitting down to enjoy a range of traditional Italian dishes from around Italy. The new winter menu at Davvero’s offers 16 dishes across antipasti, entrees, pasta and risotto, and mains, as well as delicious desserts. I was fortunate to receive an invite to a long table dinner and have the opportunity to sample the new winter menu which presents some really delicious dishes. Particular standouts were the pappardelle pasta with slow cooked wild boar; ravioli in butter sauce; slow cooked beef cheeks in creamy cheesy polenta; and the spatchcock marinated in Mediterranean spices. These dishes presented some really delicious flavours and were highly enjoyable and satisfying. Overall, the night was really enjoyable, the food delicious, and in the vein of Italian hospitality and generosity, we certainly did not go home hungry, rather we were way too overwhelmed with all that food. A big thank you to Cristiano and Lorenzo and the staff at Davvero for a wonderful night.
I’ve been to Greenhouse on a number of occasions and headed there for a team breakfast. I chose the house smoked ocean trout atop toasted rye bread, which was served with a apple and watercress salad and a 62 degree egg. I really enjoyed this delicious breakfast. I love smoked trout and the apple and dressing helps to cut through the slight richness of the trout. The dense rye bread is great for soaking up the runny egg yolk. The sous vide effect ensures the egg is cooked perfectly, but I would prefer 63° sous vide egg which is less runny and the white is a tad firmer. With a cup of mocha, yummy breakfast and great start to the day!
Chimek is another Korean fried chicken restaurant with a twist. They’ve fused American and Korean cusines in serving a range of fast food items which isn’t only about chicken, but also about burgers (eg black charcoal beef burger), sides (eg cheesy cayenne beer battered chips, Korean popcorn), and desserts. I was walking by and Chimek caught my eye so I popped in and ordered the Southern fried chicken which is what you need on a cold winters day. The chicken dishes are served as wings, but for $4 extra you can have them as boneless chicken pieces which is what I opted for. The chicken was served in a reasonable time and there’s a generous serve. The chicken was crunchy, crispy, not fatty or oily, perfectly cooked, moist chicken on the inside, it’s everything fried chicken should be and Chimek hit the mark. The cayenne and paprika spice is subtle but leaves your lips buzzing! It has quite an effect in delivering the Southern flavour. The wedges on the side are fantastic, crisp on the outside and soft potato on the inside. Tasty right to the end. The coleslaw is also tasty too. The complete meal which delivered and I was very satisfied. I can’t fault the dish.
Johnny’s Burger Joint serves an array of American style burgers made with hand ground beef. I ordered the Jucy Lucy, a patty stuffed with cheese and served with onions, crispy bacon, and BBQ Sauce. The burgers are made fresh so after around 15 minutes, it was served. Johnny has perfected each of his sauces with a trip to the US and it shows. The tasty bun encases a slightly dense well cooked patty that is full of meatiness and flavour. Each bite results in the goeey cheese oozing out. The stuffed cheese is different and helps keep the patty moist and is really delicious. The BBQ sauce provides a lovely moisteness and is not overly sweet like the supermarket sauces. There’s plenty of crispy bacon (I like when the menu description is on the mark with what you get) which adds to the flavour and makes for a very enjoyable burger. While the burger isn’t overly large, it can get a bit monotonous and is an effort to get through, however, sometimes when you’re hungry all you need is a burger and Johnny’s Burger Joint hit the spot for me.
Indonesia Indah is located downstairs and presents a calming relaxing atmosphere away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Offering al a carte, delivery, and lunch time meals, there’s lots to choose from. I chose the combination option of beef rendang and chicken, served with coconut rice, vegetables and potatoes. I really love beef rendang and this version was soft, tender, and full of flavour and was very very tasty. The chicken was covered in mild spices with coconut soaked into the skin and lightly fried producing a delicious flavour. The coconut rice has a touch of sweetness making each bite enjoyable and the vegetables and potatoes help to balance out the meal from the strong flavours. A hidden gem offering delicious Indonesian fare at excellent value.
I was invited to Alfred’s Pizzeria to get a sneak peak of the small bar and pizzeria before they officially open their doors to the public on Tuesday 26th April. Located opposite the State Buildings towards the corner of Barrack Street and St George’s Terrace, lies this hidden gem underground the Perth CBD. Formerly a record shop, the intimate space has been revamped to reflect an American gangster style hangout which goes with the theme of an American Italian club taking you back to the 80s and 90s. There’s guns, pizza, alcohol and rock n roll, with the venue adorned with memorabilia from the US, wall paper from the 60s, fake cash, weapons, handcuffs, and items encased in trapdoors. Seating up to 30 people, there’s a large selection of alcoholic beverages to choose from and lots of pizzas on the menu. They also offer pizza by the slice. If you’re really into cheese, there’s also a cheese board available. I really enjoyed the pizza’s and will be back to try the other items on the menu.