Sunday, 20 February 2011

Mrs S, Maylands

 "Am I too young for coffee?"

Renee's meal 

Ross' meal

Some forgot to invite Mr S to Mrs S' party. When we visited Mrs S (located in a spacious premises on 8th Avenue on the corner next to the Maylands station) on Friday morning, the place was completely full of, and Misses (we grabbed the last vacant table). Not one of Perth's 3/4 million males. Not that the decor of Mrs S was off-putting to men - it is quirky and interesting. The menu was posted on old Golden Circle kids books (the ones with the gold and black spines), and the table numbers were letters cut out of fibreboard. It was bustling and fun, the perimeter full of quirk. It was not intimidating; it was welcoming of all genders and ages.

I ordered the mushrooms, eggs, feta and Turkish bread ($16.50) . Renee chose the cornbread, bacon, eggs & maple ($15.50). There was plenty of other things to crave on the menu too, like toasted brioche, peaches and vanilla bean marscapone ($12). The food was amazing. But more so, it tasted like it came from your grandma! Renee's cornbread tasted like pumpkin scones (one of my grandma's staple foods), and the (plum?) relish that came with my dish tasted like it was crafted with love by a grandma. Both dishes had a nostalgic flavour that no other cafés we have been to has had. The dishes were cooked perfectly, and there we no complaints from either of us!

The coffees too were great - my flat white was creamy with the right amount of coffee, and Renee enjoyed her iced coffee maybe a little too much. No complaints here either!

Before we left, a couple of guys came in for breakfast - back to normal café gender ratios. Guess I can't find anything to fault Mrs S for anymore!

The Verdict
Coffee  4.5/5
Eggs (the meal!)  4.5/5
Service  4/5
Atmosphere 4/5
Total = 17/20

Baby T's score = 3/5 (Tallulah had a great time pushing her feet against the table, but was wondering why the staff gave her parents a weird look when they tag-teamed eating their meals. And no, Tallulah, no coffee for you just yet!)

Website: No website, but check out the Mrs S blog that was being updated before the café opened!

Mrs. S on Urbanspoon

Friday, 18 February 2011

Tiger, Tiger Coffee Bar, Perth

This is Tiger, tiger's courtyard, which passersby might catch a glimpse of if they look into a passageway whilst walking down Murray Street in the west end of the city. It has long been one of our favourites, and I know that Renee was almost a permanent fixture here when she was working in the city PT (pre-Tallulah), so it has been a long time coming for us to review it. We had the chance to do just that when we ventured in to the city last weekend to do some shopping.

Tiger, tiger has great coffee. We both ordered flat whites, and as expected they came out looking like they would taste rich, bold and delicious (they did). Sugar was served in lumps, but, unlike other lump cafés that one might find in Vic Park, Tiger, tiger's lumps were all different sizes. Which was good, as the coffee was great enough that very little, if any, sugar was needed!

By the way, don't you love their blue tables? With the inside/outside theme and random tigers found around the place, the vibe is relaxed and welcoming. In fact the owner came over and chatted with us for a while. Tallulah, who came with us today, was not the only baby joining their parents for breakfast that morning. I was about to take a photo of her before we left, but just then she started crying. So no photo today (there will be pics next time)!

Anyway the food! Avocado, herbs and feta on sourdough will set you back $14; Dr Seuss' ham, poached eggs, oven roasted tomato on olive ciabatta is $18. Renee grabbed 'The Tiger' which is 2 poached eggs with avocado & TT rosamond sauce on sourdough ($15); I had eggs benedict ($15). The food is amazing, but Tigertiger's problem is one of proportion. Renee's breakfast had too little of their chutney-like sauce to go with the eggs and avocado, particularly with the massive amount of toast. I thought the same - if you are going to serve three massive slices of toast, there should be enough of the good stuff to put on it. To be fair, my order got mixed up and so they put my eggs benedict on toast rather than rye bagel. Also, did I mention that the hollandaise sauce was amazing?

 'The Tiger'

eggs benedict

The Verdict
Coffee  4/5
Eggs (the meal!)  3.5/5
Service  3.5/5
Atmosphere  4.5/5
Total = 15.5/20

Baby T's score = 3/5 (Bring on kid dates at Tiger, tiger!)

Would we go again? Yes, it's great to find somewhere good to go in the City that's not located in a food court!

Tiger, Tiger Coffee Bar on Urbanspoon

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Bellisa Café, Bedford

Bellisa's big breakfast

chorizo with corn, chilli and bean bread and avocado salsa

We don't usually go to Bedford. It's on Walter Road, the alternative road to get to all things Morely Galleria, or if you got on the #16 or #60 bus thinking it would go along Beaufort Street but instead taking you along William Street to Walter Road while you freak out wondering where you are and what kind of area has a Harley Davidson showroom. Well Bedford does have one reason of existence - Bellisa Café! This café is big and spacious, and set out well. It instantly feels comfortable.

We grabbed a seat and checked out the menu, which according to Bellisa's website changes monthly. It doesn't have to though, because what was on offer is quite good! The February menu contains items like ricotta hotcakes with vanilla roasted nectarines topped with lemon curd ($15) and crepes with purple fig, crumbled blue cheese and vincotto ($14). Renée settled on the Bellisa big breakfast which they happily substituted the mushroom for avocado ($22; a big V breakfast is also on offer for $18) and I went for free range chorizo grilled with avocado salsa and corn, chilli and bean bread topped with poached egg ($21). Renée thought that the big breakfast was outstanding - everything was cooked to perfection, the scrambled eggs were definitely a winner and the sourdough bread was delicious. Likewise, my chorizo was also cooked perfectly, and complemented the delicious polenta-bread (which was so good Renee wanted to steal it), and that avocado salsa - delicious!

Bellisa also notes that their menu is kid-friendly, with things like pancakes for breakfast and fish & chips for lunch. Tallulah wasn't interested in the food though - she was much more interested in looking at the trees across the road and pushing against the table. Oh well, maybe next time. Still, the staff at Bellisa loved Tallulah, so she felt quite at home.

We also ordered a flat white and a long macc topped up. Unfortunately the coffees did not match the level set by the food, they were too watery. We didn't go back for seconds.

Bellisa also have a range of cakes on offer, and although we were full we couldn't resist taking some for later. I loved the idea of a homemade wagon wheel ($4), with its delicious marshmallow and jam filling between soft biscuit - way better than the Wagon Wheels™ (one of my favourite snacks, btw!) you can buy in your local shop. We also purchased a lemon and ricotta cupcake - moist and delicious with tangy lemon curd.

Pink deer head approves of take-home snacks!

The Verdict
Coffee  2.5/5
Eggs (the meal!)  4/5
Service  4/5
Atmosphere  3.5/5
Total = 14/20

Baby T's score = 4/5 (Tallulah is looking forward to trying some kid-friendly food once she grows older!)

Would we go again? If the coffee improves, Bellisa will be a winner!

Bellisa Cafe on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Fez, Mount Lawley

eggs benedict

traditional Berbers breakfast

We have finally moved back into our old haunt, Mount Lawley; hooray! Not much has changed since we upped and left to travel around the world (without getting very far). Except for the new public toilets next to the new supper club and new Westpac. And new Turkish takeway. And our favourite Japanese restaurant moving to the other side of the road. Ok, so some things have changed, like the opening of a new Moroccan café, named Fez, in the building that looks like a ship on the corner of Walcott Street and Raglan Road, behind Fresh Provisions.

It seems like an eternity ago that we watched the construction of the ship building, complete with mermaid figurehead on the prow of the building, and it is great to see the café tenancy finally open. And since the city Fez was on our list of destinations on our unfortunately much-shortened ('postponed') round-the-world trip, we were keen to visit Fez Café to see what flavours we were missing out on.

As it turns out, not much. The café has been fitted out in a modern decor, complete with dark colour-pallette, fancy light-fittings, leather wall-seating, etc. In other words, it looks like every other café in Perth, which is such a shame because the interior designers could have had so much fun with a Moroccan theme. Like exquisite rugs, luxurious couches, intricate wallpaper, a bright colour scheme, interesting plates and cups; it looks like we will have to visit the real Fez to experience this. We did like the outside seating and the water that was served in olive oil bottles (but this didn't make up for the lack of atmosphere).

We chose a seat inside, and we were offered a highchair for Baby T by the waitperson who was proficient in service, but lacked the warmth that you would expect in a Moroccan café (we declined as Baby T likes to sit in our arms). Baby T was particularly fussy this morning, and we decided to move to a table outside. We informed the waitperson, who was cleaning the glass door, that we were moving outside, but she didn't think to help me move the water, 2 glasses, 2 coffees, salt, pepper, baby harness, bag, bottle, dummy, sunglasses and serviettes to the outside table (at one point closing the door on me).

We chose from their menu eggs benedict ($16.50) and the traditional Berbers breakfast ($19), consisting of meatballs with eggs and grilled bread. The eggs benedict was good, with rich creamy eggs and a delicious tasty bread that might have been a wholemeal or rye bread? Either way, it was a respectable eggs benedict. The traditional Berbers breakfast again had tasty eggs that complemented the rich tomato sauce and slightly-dry meatballs. In my opinion, though, the sauce was a little bit like a Sicilian pasta sauce and could have been complemented with some extra ingredients (like olives and toasted capsicum) and maybe some Harissa on the side. The grilled bread was great for dipping in the sauce. Overall, there are better breakfasts out there.

We also ordered a flat white and iced coffee (Baby T didn't give us time to peruse the drinks menu further). The flat white came out in a wide, brown cup and was delicious with a tasty, creamy foam that I just wanted more of (but unfortunately Baby T didn't want to stay). Renee enjoyed her iced coffee.

The Verdict
Coffee  3.5/5
Eggs (the meal!)  3/5
Service  3/5
Atmosphere  2/5
Total = 11.5/20

Baby T's score = 3/5 (Tallulah will be ready for a highchair one day!)

Would we go again? Good day to you, Fez. I said good day! It might be fun to check out their lunch or dinner menu. But overall it is pretty ho-hum and quite pricey!


Fez on Urbanspoon