WATCHING Freo’s colourful cast of characters pass by Il Cibo on Market Street is almost as enjoyable as the food itself.
From the well-heeled to the down-at-heel, there’s plenty to see, and more than a few to wonder, “what they were thinking going out dressed like that?”
So we were very happy to perch on a bench seat, like shags on a rock with a bird’s eye view, while waiting for our lunch to arrive.
Il Cibo has been around for a bit and while others have come and gone, or entered palliative care, the food here has always been consistently good.
There’s a great range of salads and plenty to go with them, although D’Angerous Dave and his dad, Dave senior, looked down their noses at such healthy offerings.
Showing their Pommy heritage they both wanted chips.
For senior it was chips ($8) with a chicken and mushroom parcel, and for junior—quelle surprise—fish and chips.
They’re on the menu as a kids meal, but the staff were happy to super-size a grown-up version ($26).
The slender gourgons of fish were crisp on the outside and moist on the inside.
While the chicken pie got the thumbs up for its juicy tenderness and the fantastic chips, which the waiter agreed are great.
“There’s a secret to it,” she says, adding, “But they won’t tell us what.”
Feeling all righteous, I had Dave’s Thai coleslaw with a spinach and ricotta pastry ($9.50).
This staple can be hit and miss, but Il Cibo’s inhouse version hit the right note, with crisp pastry and the perfect balance of ricotta and spinach.
Although the salad could have done with a bit more of a dressing.
Like the vast majority of the food the cakes are made inhouse.
Dave senior had the coconut custard tart, a rich blend that went well with his “creamy” coffee.
“Brilliant, the best coffee I have had,” he said.
I offered to share a baci cake ($7.50) with my beloved, but he wanted a flour-free brownie to himself.
The baci was chocolate mouse on steroids, and so rich it made the cream on the side seem insipid, while the brownie was rich and chewy.
So like the three bears we left agreeing everything was just right.
By JENNY D’ANGER
2 Market Street, Fremantle
open 7 days breakfast and lunch