Perth Girl About Town

29 September 2010


As mentioned in a previous post, last week I was in Dampier for two days. I have been to Dampier quite a few times and I don’t mind it. The worst part of the trip was the 5:25am flight to get there!

I stayed at the Peninsula Palms which is basic accommodation on the esplanade in Dampier. There are two things I look for when deciding where to stay when I travel for work; those are that the place is clean and secure. Glad to say that the Peninsula Palms had both of those qualities! To be honest, there has only been one hotel which hasn’t met those two criteria’s in the past (I am looking at you Greenwich Inn in Sydney!). 

As Dampier is situated on the water I think it is quite a pretty town. Even Karratha (which is only about 20 mins away) isn’t too bad. Anyway, below are some pictures from my recent trip, including a picture of my dinner from the mess hall at the Peninsula Palms. Enjoy! 

27 September 2010

Laser Tag

At work I am responsible for organising all of our corporate social events. It came be quite a daunting task trying to please everyone when there is a mixed bunch of people. Lately we have been having quite a few sundowners so I wanted to try and do something which is away from alcohol and also gets us away from the office.

After going through my options I finally decided on playing laser tag. Laser tag is something that most people have done before but not since they were around 10 years old!

We went to Darkzone in Northbridge and I have to say, it was one of the most fun activities that I have done in a while! We had a group of about 20 and payed to have the place locked out. This meant that we didn’t have anybody else in the venue at the time we were there. For those not familiar with laser tag, the objective of the game is to shoot people of other teams (there are 3 in total) and to shoot each other’s base. You wear a vest with panels on it that the other teams aim for and you all hold a laser gun.

With activities like this it is hard to know how much people will get involved or if they will think it is silly. I was quite surprised then to see everybody’s competitive side come out as we ran around the darkened room shooting lasers at each other. At the Darkzone in Northbridge, there is an upstairs component and a downstairs area. Believe me when I say you will get hot and sweaty playing this game!

We had a group of people in their 20’s/30’s and everybody had a fantastic time. I think I had more fun now than I did when I was younger!

So for those that watch ‘How I Met Your Mother’, Barney said it best when he said it was “Legend, wait for it….ARY!”

Coode Street Cafe

One glorious Sunday morning, around 9am, M and I wanted to go out for breakfast but didn’t want to venture to far away from home. After doing some investigative work, and looking at their menu online, we decided to go to the Coode Street Café in Mount Lawley.

The Coode Street café is surrounded by houses so your only option is parking on the street. We pulled up at the front of the café and saw that there were quite a few empty tables out the front (good!) but no parking (bad!). After doing another lap we were lucky when a car that was parked directly out the front, pulled away. After getting out of the car and closer to the empty tables out the front of the café, we realised that they all had little reserved signs on them. After speaking to one of the waiters, he found us a table outside which was reserved for 11am. It was only about 9:30 at this time so that was perfect.

Even though we saw the menu online we still had another look once we sat down at our table. After recently discovering that I am allergic to egg I have found it quite difficult going out for breakfast. Normally I have been ordering the “big breakfast” type dish and giving M my eggs. So I was glad to be going somewhere where there is quite a bit of range in dishes. Coode Street café have the usual mix of bacon and egg dishes along side muesli, fruit salads and hotcakes. Although those were all quite tempting I decided on the croissant with ham and Swiss cheese ($9.00), with sides of mushrooms and bacon ($3.00 each). M had the poached eggs and bacon ($13.00) with gourmet beans on the side ($3.00). We also ordered a vanilla milkshake ($5.50) between the two of us and a cappuccino for me and flat white for M (both $3.70). They have a big range of fresh juices and smoothies, including having the option of a Berroca mixed in with them! I must remember that when I am looking for a hangover cure breakfast.

I was quite happy that the milkshake came out first as I was really craving some milk. It had a lovely taste to it but it wasn’t anywhere near as good as the milkshakes we got at Millpoint Café and Bookstore. After that the coffees came out and they had a nice flavour to them too. They weren’t too hot either, perfect temperature to drink them. The only negative was that there was no sugar on the table; they were just served with a sugar sachet. That is fine with me but M normally has two sugars in his coffee. Nothing major, just a small thing we noticed.

While we were waiting for our meals to arrive we noticed that there was a double storey house across the road, with a dog on the balcony looking at everyone’s meals! Poor dog, smelling all the bacons and sausages without being able to have any!

M’s meal arrived first and I was quite surprised to see the beans, having just assumed they would be Heinz baked beans from a can. These were beans of all different sizes and they had a spicy type flavour to them too.

My meal came out not long after and I realised they had given me beans instead of a side of bacon. When I spoke to the waitress they just took my beans away and replaced it with some bacon a minute or two later. My croissant was flaky, crunchy and soft and it was lovely with the mushrooms and bacon. M’s poached eggs were perfectly poached and as soon as he pricked the eggs the yolk ran over his bread.

When we got up and went inside to pay our bill, we saw that they had a big range of cakes, slices, muffins, sandwiches and other treats they people can choose from. They all looked really delicious so we will have to go back there for lunch one day!

We will definitely be going back to Coode Street café, the service was good and the food was even better.

Coode St Cafe on Urbanspoon

22 September 2010

Perth Girl in the Pilbara

Just got back from a two day trip in Dampier, always good to be home in Perth again!

20 September 2010

Rembrandt Polish Restaurant

A couple of weeks ago, on a chilly Saturday night, M and I were trying to find somewhere to go for dinner when I thought I would use my Urbanspoon application and have a bit of a lucky dip. It came up with a place in Inglewood called Rembrandt and described it as Eastern European food. After reading some of the reviews we realised it was Polish food and decided to head down there and take our chances on getting a table for two.

After finding the restaurant (it is near Mondo’s the butcher) and finding a park, we went inside and found a dimly lit restaurant with a few people sitting down. We spoke to one of the waitresses but she told us we would have to come back another time as they were full tonight. BOO!

Fast forward to last Friday night when we were going through the usual process of discussing where we would go to dinner. M remembered about Rembrandt and booked a table for the two of us at 7:00pm. Success! I had never had Polish before but I love trying new things so was looking forward to the meal.

Upon entering the restaurant we saw it was quite empty but there were quite a few reserved markers on those empty tables. We were greeted by a friendly waitress who then took us to a table for two, near the rear of the restaurant. We were then handed two menus, including the drinks menu. This is probably a good time to mention that it is BYO alcohol so we ended up ordering a coke and ginger beer.

Looking around the dimly light restaurant it had quite simple décor. There were candles on each table which created a bit of ambience, along with paintings on the walls behind us and vodka bottles on the shelves in front of us.

We were then served a starter of a small dish filled with lard and pork pieces, with two pieces of bread on the side. Interesting. I sampled a small piece of the bread with a tiny amount on top but I realised immediately it wasn’t to my taste. It was simply fat with little pieces of bacon in it. M quite liked it though so he had my share and then the rest.

After perusing the menu for a while I had decided to order the Vegetarian Croquette ($9.50) for starters and then the Pierogi ($13.00) for main course. These are traditional Polish dumplings and I ordered some with meat and some with cheese and potato. I also spotted they had Polish doughnuts on the menu which I thought sounded quite interesting. M ordered the same entrée but the Hunters Stew ($12.00) as a main meal. This was on the menu as ‘traditional beef, pork and sauerkraut Polish stew with wild mushrooms red wine served with potatoes or rye bread.

The Croquette was quick to come out and I discovered that it was served with a cup of Borsch next to it. I had never had Borsch before and the reason for this is that I don’t really like beetroot. Anyway, I still tried it but only a sip. Definitely tasted like beetroot. The Croquette was different to how I expected it to be but it was very nice. It had a crispy outside and inside was soft and cheesy with little pieces of mushrooms inside. It also had a strong pepper flavour.

After finishing our entrée we didn’t have to wait long for our main meals to come out. My Pierogi came out first and my immediate reaction was to pick up the little dumplings and eat them with my fingers. Common sense prevailed and I used my knife and fork to spread the sour cream (which was on the plate along with a salad) over the dumplings.

M’s meal appeared soon after and his arrived inside the bread roll, in the middle of the plate. The top of the bread roll was cut off so you could take it off and eat the stew from the middle. 

The dumplings were quite nice with my favourite of the two being the meat ones which had minced meat inside. The salad on the side acted more as decoration than a side salad. On the menu it did say that there were 7 dumplings that come with the meal but I had closer to 12! Needless to say, I got very full, very quickly! I tried M’s stew and it was ok but I was glad I didn’t order it. It was a very heavy meal with a lot of it too.

I was so full after a couple of the dumplings that I stopped eating them, especially as I wanted to order some of the Polish doughnuts. I then asked if I could take a ‘doggy bag’ home with the leftover dumplings and if we could see the dessert menu. Then after seeing the menu I realised the doughnuts were only available on the weekend. Devastated!

I was glad that we went to Rembrandt’s. As I mentioned before, I had never had Polish food before and I am glad I can mark it off the list of things to try. The waitresses were very nice and the service was great. The only reason I wouldn’t go back is because I don’t think the food was quite to my taste.

Rembrandt on Urbanspoon

19 September 2010

Pony Express O

As mentioned in previous posts, I do love my coffee in the morning. I also like to get out of the office and have a gossip with L, one of my workmates. After hearing about Pony Express O, one Friday we decided to take the longer walk and go to Mayfair Street in West Perth.

I drive past Mayfair street everyday on my way to and from work but too be honest, I had never noticed this little hidden gem and, I admit, we were actually a bit lost when we first tried to find the entrance (it is from the back, away from the street).

For those not in the know, Pony Express O is an old stable turned coffee shop. When you walk in you will first notice the fake lawn on the floor and the vines on your right, which have plastic insects all over it.

Upon walking through the entrance it is more confusing still with no clear sign on where you place your order. L and I walked back and forth between the two open doors, trying to work out where the counter was. The gentleman behind the coffee machine obviously realised we were new to the place and explained the system. We placed our orders with him (cappuccino and flat white) and if you have the right change, which we luckily did, you place it in a steel chute which is next to the barista. The coffees were $4 each.

There is plenty of seating inside with long wooden benches inside and wooden stools on the outside. There isn’t much in way of food you can purchase there, except for a couple of slices and bars. I did however notice a sign welcoming people to bring their lunch in there!

The coffee took about 5 minutes to be ready and in that time there were quite a few people coming in to place their coffee orders, some even bringing their own cups. Quite the place to be on a Friday morning it seemed!
The coffee was lovely, perfect temperature and not bitter at all. The only thing I didn’t like about the set up was that the sugar, if you wanted it, was behind the barista, which made me feel a bit awkward, like I was getting in his way!

Usually when people talk about coffee in West Perth it is all about Epic Espresso on Outram Street but I definitely think Pony Express is up there with the best. 

Pony Express O on Urbanspoon

16 September 2010

Greenwood Hotel

A couple of days before Father’s Day I had a call from my mum to say that my family would be having a Father’s Day lunch at the Greenwood Hotel. The Greenwood Hotel is located on Warwick Road in Greenwood, right near the Greenwood shops and not too far off the Warwick Road Freeway exit. I had heard quite a few positive reviews about Greenwood Hotel so I was quite looking forward to it.

M and I arrived and saw that my family had already been seated. They then told us about the debacle they had been through to get seated. In my dad’s words “When we first arrived there were 2 girls talking behind the counter. We stood there for about two minutes while they talked; then they just turned and walked off, totally ignoring us.  We then walked across to a bloke and asked which table we had been allocated.He then simply pointed and said number 20 over there. I couldn't believe my ears.”
My family then grabbed the menu’s themselves for the table.This wasn’t even bad service, more like no common courtesy. The inside of the Greenwood is quite nice and has a lot of natural light coming through the windows. It isn’t a dingy pub by any means and is actually quite large on the inside.

When we arrived M and I placed our order for the drinks first with M ordering a beer and a Bulmer’s cider for me. I did like the fact that they had this on tap, It was perfectly refreshing!

After looking at the menu we had to go up to the counter and place our orders. They did have a specials menu but it wasn’t really “lunch time” type foods with all the meals being quite heavy. In the end I decided to have the steak sandwich ($16.50) which was described on the menu as “tender steak, bacon, lettuce, tomato, cucumber, sautéed onion and tomato sauce, served with a side of golden fries”. This seemed to be the most popular choice of the day with M and the majority of our table ordering the same.

My dad had the Eye Fillet Steak ($34.90) which was on the menu as “Grilled to your liking served on sautéed garlic and herb potatoes with broccolini and your choice of pepper sauce, mushroom sauce, a simple jus or hollandaise”.He ordered it with pepper sauce and served medium.

My mum ordered the Chicken Involitini ($33.00) which was “Chicken breast filled with prosciutto wrapped prawn served on a citrus risotto with broccolini and Hollandaise” and my Nan had the Caesar Salad, main size with chicken ($21.90).

The meals came out in a reasonable amount of time, close to about 20 mins, and the steak sandwiches arrived first. I first noticed the amount of bacon that was spilling out the sides of the sandwich. There was also quite a bit of salad inside and a decent piece of steak. This was no problem for M or my brother but I found it quite difficult to eat as it was so big. I ended up eating each item of the sandwich separately using my knife and fork. The consensus of the table was that there was so much bacon, it was really a bacon sandwich with steak. Normally it should enhance the flavour of the sandwich but it seemed to dominate the flavour of the sandwich. I ended up eating the steak, bacon and the salad as the bread was about an inch thick and wasn’t particularly fresh. The chips which came with the meal were cooked well and had a nice taste to them. Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, just the way I like them!
Notice the bacon spilling out?
The steak, chicken and Caesar salad came out a couple of minutes after the sandwiches. The Caesar salad looked quite nice and fresh and had a perfectly poached egg on the top. The steak and chicken also looked good with the sauces poured over the meals. After my Dad had finished his meal he commented on the fact that his steak wasn’t very tender and thought it was quite expensive in hindsight for what he got. 

The Caesar Salad with Chicken
Chicken Involitini
 Eye Fillet Steak
I know my Nana liked her Caesar salad but she wasn’t able to finish it off as it was so big.

Upon looking at a poster about half way through our meal, we noticed that they were giving away gifts to all fathers. We assumed this would be given to us after we had finished our meal but when they seated another party next to us and handed them their gifts we decided to ask for ours. It ended up being a card and a stubby holder, better than nothing!

I mostly enjoyed the meal we had at the Greenwood but I think it was more the company that I enjoyed rather than the food or the service. I wouldn’t rush to go back there if I was making the decision but would go there if somebody else wanted to.

Greenwood on Urbanspoon

13 September 2010

Cue Bar - Inglewood

After our dinner at Big Bowl we decided to go for a drive and either have a drink somewhere or do something fun. Turned out we could both at the same time! M had been harassing me about going to play pool with him for quite some time and I had always managed to worm my way out of it but, when we drove past Cue Bar in Inglewood, M finally got his way.

The Cue Bar is on the opposite side of the road from the Inglewood and there is plenty of parking out the front.We went inside and one of the first things I noticed was that it was quite busy, but that everybody seemed to be like us, couples or small groups of people just having a drink and playing pool. Yes I did say having a drink! We found out that the Cue Bar is licensed and they have $10 cocktails on Saturday nights. If only M knew about this I would have gone along so much sooner! They also have different drinks specials on during the week including $6 Coronas on Wednesdays and pool competitions on Friday nights.

You pay when you leave but you rent the table by the hour ($14 on peak. $8 off peak). M ordered a Singh beer which is from Thailand and I had a strawberry daiquiri. They then said they would bring our drinks to our table.

We started playing and to be honest, im not going to mention the scores here. It is safe to say that M kicked my butt in every game even though we were playing by our own rules. When I say our rules, I mean that for every one shot M gets, I get two, even if I didn’t pot a ball.

They were playing funky house over the speakers and it had quite a good atmosphere for a pool hall. The service was very good with a friendly waitress asking us if we wanted a new drink and they were quick to take our old ones away.

We ended up staying for 2 hours which equalled 3 games of pool and 2 strawberry daiquiris. Coincidence? Maybe!

We will definitely be coming back here again. It is a good place to go to for a drink, a chat and also play pool. The Cur Bar is at 800 Beaufort Street, Inglewood and it is also open to 1am on Saturday nights. If you wanted more information their website is

Big Bowl Noodle

Last Saturday night M and I decided to park in Northbridge and have a wonder around to find somewhere that looks good. Then, after deciding against The Red Teapot and Lido, we saw Big Bowl Noodle house. At first I wasn’t impressed and it was actually M who pushed to go inside to see what it was like.

One of the first things I noticed was the big machines right behind the counter which looked full of flour. We quickly realised that this was how they made the fresh noodles they spoke about in the menu!

After weighing up our options on the menu, we decided to order one Combination Stir Fried Noodle ($13.80) and one King Prawn Noodle Soup (12.80). The most expensive dishes on the menu were only $13.90. When placing the order the cashier asked us if we wanted thick, thin or wholemeal noodles and we choose thick for both meals.

We planned on sharing both meals as we normally do and the Combination Stir Fried Noodle came out first. I found this dish the nicer of the two as the noodles had quite a nice flavour and they were cooked perfectly. I really could taste the difference between the fresh noodles and what we normally have. There were big pieces of chicken, spring onion and bean sprouts throughout.

The King Prawn Noodle Soup came out next and looked delicious with the big prawns and bok choy floating on the top. Unfortunately it didn’t taste as good as it looked. I felt like it was lacking something, maybe some chilli would have helped it? The noodles were cooked so well though.
I ended up leaving M to finish the King Prawn Noodle Soup (after I sneakily stole the majority of the prawns) and I had the Combination Stir Fried Noodle.

After a while I noticed that that they had cut out the carrot in the shape of a bird  which was quite cut but I was not impressed that my plate had a big chip on the side (see the picture above, left hand side).

It was nice to have some fresh noodles though and after seeing the baked noodles with cheese came out of the kitchen, I think we will be going back there.

Big Bowl on Urbanspoon

10 September 2010

What's on this weekend

If you are looking for something to do this weekend there is quite a lot going on. Apart from the Perth Fashion Festival there is also a free Food and Wine Festival in Chittering. I will be attending the food and wine festival on the Sunday, specifically to see a cooking demonstration by Emmanuel Mollois.

If that isn’t your type of thing, there is also a gig at Ellington Jazz Club on the Sunday. Oz Big Band will be playing from 3pm and the tickets are $15 for a table and $10 for standing.
This is also the last weekend of A Day in Pompeii at the Museum of WA!

Have a great weekend whatever you do!

09 September 2010

San Churro Leederville

As we drove down Oxford Street it started to rain, luckily for us though we found parking right out the front. Doesn’t happen often on a Friday night in Leederville, obviously fate was taking us there. 

When we walked through the big glass doors we realised how busy it was. Luckily I set my eyes on a table down the back which had just been cleaned. There were plenty of tables inside, maybe even too many, I felt a bit claustrophobic in there. I was glad we had a table for four just for the two of us as I hate feeling like I am sitting in somebody’s lap! We looked at the menu and decided we wanted the Churros for 2 ($13.90), which included one pot of melted “couverture” milk chocolate and one pot of white chocolate. M said he would go up to the counter and place our order and while he was there he ordered me a Spanish hot chocolate and a flat white for himself.

After about 2 minutes, one of the waiters came up with two drinks in his hand. He had a very strong accent so after trying to decipher what he said we realised he was trying to hand over a chilli hot chocolate and cappuccino. We obviously declined them and about 5 minutes later our correct drinks arrived. 

I first noticed how dark and chocolaty Spanish hot chocolate was. They had put two shots of espresso in the flat white which M loved but I don’t know how he can sleep after that!  My Spanish hot chocolate was lovely, very thick and rich. It tasted just like melted chocolate and the consistency wasn’t far off that.  

Our churros arrived not too long after that. We had 6 churros between the two of us and as M only likes white chocolate he quickly claimed the white chocolate pot of dipping chocolate his! The churros weren’t as hot as I was expecting them to be, which I was happy about. They were coated in sugar and crispy on the outside, warm and fluffy on the inside.  I dipped mine into the milk chocolate one first and it was lovely.  I also stole some of M’s white chocolate which was equally as yummy but I preferred the milk chocolate one. The chocolate dips were nice but I don’t think they were big enough! Towards the end of the churros, we were scraping the bottom of the dish to get any remnants left. 

 A close up of the sugar granules on the churros
As a side note, while we were enjoying our churros, a group of girls sat at the table next to us after placing their orders.  After a couple of minutes the waiter came up and again tried to give them a cake and coffee that they hadn’t ordered. We made a joke about it with the girls at the table and then 5 minutes later a different waiter tried to do the same thing again!  I think that because the restaurant was so full, they were trying to take and deliver orders as quickly as possible so that they could have as much customer turnover as possible. 
So overall the churros were good, the service was fast but I think they definitely need to spend a bit more time making sure the correct orders go to the correct people. I would go back there but I think you need to be in a chocolate craving mood!

Chocolateria San Churro on Urbanspoon

06 September 2010

The Cabin Wine Bar & Bistro

M and I decided early in the week that we were going to go to the Jazz Cellar in Mt Hawthorn for the first time on the following Friday night. We have been loving Jazz music recently and all week I was looking forward to going to the Jazz Cellar. Imagine my disappointment then when we got there just before 7pm to be told it was a full house! We still went inside and spoke to the gentleman who runs the place and he suggested coming back next week but around 5:00pm. Seeing that we were all dressed up with nowhere to go, we decided to head on over to the Cabin Wine Bar and Bistro which was just down the road.
The Cabin was one of those places that when M and I had seen it advertised or driven past we always said “we should go there” but never really thought about it much more than that. I also didn’t know it was targeted at over 25’s which, as I am 25 in a matter of weeks, I am loving. There is nothing worse than feeling like the oldest person in the place!

Of the first things we noticed when walking in was the décor they had used to set the scene. There was a fireplace in the doorway and pictures hanging on the walls which really make you feel like you have walked into a ski lodge in the mountains. We then noticed how busy the place was, with not a free table in the place.

After taking a walk around, we found a long table outside that we could share with another couple that were on the other side. Luckily it wasn’t a very cold night but they also had heaters outside which took any chill out the air. After a couple of minutes an attentive staff member walked by and offered to get us a menu so we could see the food and beverages they had on offer.

M decided to have a glass of the house Shiraz they had on offer ($12) and I decided on their sparkling rose they had on offer ($12). Sorry, I should have written down the names of what we ordered! Our waiter came and took our order and money and was back in a matter of minutes with our change. After about 10 minutes our drinks arrived to our table.

Love my purple sparkly clutch!
We weren’t really impressed with our drinks (possibly the reason I didn’t note the names) and after looking at the menu there wasn’t anything that stood out. What we did like about the place was that it had such a good vibe, not pretentious at all and it was a nice place to go for a drink and a chat. As it was so busy we had 3 other couples all within earshot but it didn’t feel like we were on top of each other or that we had to talk quieter than normal.

We were originally going to get some dessert there but after seeing the menu, we decided to go into Leederville and go to San Churro (an upcoming post!).

We didn’t realise it at the time, but after looking at the website for The Cabin we realised it is owned by the same company who owns the Suite in Subiaco. I can definitely see the similarities and when we went to the Suite we were really impressed with their coffee! I really want to go to the Suite for a meal, must remember to keep that in mind.

LIKES: The laidback vibe, the service
DISLIKES: The drink prices being on the more expensive side

*We have been taking swing dancing classes lately and we have even booked a jazz band for our wedding. More on that another time!

The Cabin on Urbanspoon

Caffissimo West Perth

One of the things that get me through my day is my daily coffee and walk with my workmate L to Caffissimo in West Perth. Every day I eye off some of the yummy treats they have on display but on this particular day, I was asked to organise a morning tea for a meeting we were having so I thought it was a great excuse to buy some of the items I have being lusting after! They have a big range of muffins, slices, tarts, pies and breads as well as savoury items such as Panini’s, wraps, pies and sausage rolls.

As I was catering for about 10 people, I bought a mixture of the different tarts and pies they had on offer. I ended up getting blueberry and strawberry cheesecakes, apple and rhubarb pie, lemon lime brulee and lemon meringue pie. As they are quite big I cut them in half so we could each have a sample of them. 

I tried the blueberry cheesecake and the lemon meringue pie and they were both lovely. The lemon meringue had a tart but sweet flavour of the lemon and the blueberry cheesecake had a good mixture of pasty, fruit and the cheese filling in the middle.

Overall I think they were perfect for the occasion and definitely impressed everyone in the meeting. Now I can sleep easy at night knowing I have sampled the items I was dreaming about for so long!

Caffissimo on Urbanspoon