All views expressed are those of the writers and may not be the views of publishers of Best Restaurants of Australia. In the spirit of true Aussie democracy, they don't take bookings. As with his other establishments no bookings are taken, so I thought an early dinner at 5. Let's start with the name. It was a nice looking salad. Now there's a refreshing start to a meal. They arrived and we all peered into the dish as to how they had turned a typically savoury dish into something sweet.
What a first visit it had been! This one uses house-made marshmallow and rich chocolate mousse and house-made graham crackers. The flavours all worked so well together! And, yes, it was a cracker. Each table would likely seat 10-12 I would say. Thank you Clint Nolan for the next instalment in your Perth small bar series. In the meantime, this week is your last chance to stop by and try some of our latest incarnations Asian flavours as we slide on into our final week.
Nolan has a formidable track record and a growing reputation as the king of informal dining. From the understated frontage it would be easy to underestimate the culinary delights that it produces. Nolan embraces their cuisines and gives them a tweak, and then plonks them down in earthenware dishes on communal tables where the diners sit rubbing shoulders and elbows with new friends. A generous kick of what I believe was Chinese five spice coated the plump pieces of duck, which teamed perfectly with the sweetness of the lightly charred corn. The menu tackles the east with a riff on banh mi and bau before taking a jump to the Americas, with sliders, tacos and empanadas. I have since noticed on facebook that the liquor license has arrived! They sent me through an email regaling me with tales of deliciousness and not only was I starving on reading it but I was also keen as mustard to get there as soon as I could! Round two of the pork was equally as magic and seemed to disappear in a flash as the first plate had! Not a huge amount of flavour, but a little different texturally.
It was also helpful to have the menu split into Small, Bread, Animal and Garden. Again I was wanting more! This dessert is like no frat kids' late-night pleasure where they toast marshmallows over an electric heater and whack them between two biscuits. Well salted and with a dish of aioli on the side. Long, high sharing tables, bare brick and counter ordering for food give a canteen vibe that allows you to take drinks at the table and order when ready. We wanted everything on the blackboard menu, even the unpalatable-sounding beef tongue?? We reserve the right to cut comments we estimate too long. It's casual in the true Aussie larrikin style. Now Mr A has a few food restrictions, no gluten being the more pertinent on his list, so we focused on the gluten free options on the menu and there were plenty.
While not having more traditional crackling like an oven roasted pork there were some pieces which had a little chew to them after their slow roasting over coals, which was all kinds of good! If you haven't heard of it, you need to visit. I can assure you though that they were really nice! With his latest venture the crown may be assured. These three words pretty much sum up most Aussies. The place greets, with the same enthusiasm, blokes in T-shirts and cargo pants and men with salad hair and skinny jeans, and delivers them frosted jars of Brooklyn Lager and 4 Pines Kolsch from a beer list as long as our Constitution. The dining space is reminiscent of a big mess hall, all exposed brick, long benches and low-hanging industrial lights. It feels cohesive, in a way that others dabbling in this space are not. Bravo on this unique dessert, I have no doubt it will be very popular! Save a trip to the till for a second or even third order.
I think a crazy part of us entertained the idea of even more pork but with the small amount of room I had left there was something on the dessert menu that I just had to try. This trendy bar, serviced by Flipside burgers next door, typifies the new improved Perth punter who looks to urban settings rather than sun, sand and surf. Up next was the Duck taco, corn salsa. Our mess-hall-style dining room serves up mod-American small plates designed to share. So come on in, pull up a stool and let us share with you the food that we love to eat.
Keep a keen eye out as the Lavish Habits Group have something new and exciting planned for 38 Roe street! Can be both refreshing and also helps to balance out some of the heavier dishes. Best of all, show me a joint where you can sit watching your little piggy rotating slowly in front of your very eyes and I'm a sucker for the crackling every time. The roasted chicken was cut into generous pieces and looked great! Northbridge is the new Fitzroy. The right amount of dessert sweetness and some interesting crunch from the chips. Cubes of watermelon, cucumber, some squashy avocado, healthy bits of goat's curd, fresh green herbs and a dousing of sriracha sauce and the way was paved to a food fusion paradise.
Now a lovely couple I got to know earlier this year are quite the cool cats and headed along on opening night last Monday. We were a ravenous trio! The pleasure was all mine. Plenty of flavour and spice but no burny heat. We invite not only those with a positive experience but also constructive criticism. Defamatory comments will not be published. Or a symbol of what our Aussie flavours and national identity should be. Looked all very fresh and there was plenty in it.