We all have our favourite local restaurants and sometimes it’s difficult to look past them when dining out. Herald food critics JENNY D’ANGER and MATT EELES tell us about the best local restaurants they reviewed in 2018 to help you discover something new in 2019. Visit fremantleherald.com for more reviews.
ANY meal at BATHERS BEACH HOUSE is a memorable experience, especially when the sun is setting over the Indian Ocean. The kangaroo ($15) is just one of the standout dishes on the menu: The thick, mouthwatering slices of tender roo are charred on the outside and blue on the inside – the only way to eat it – and the accompanying red wine jus, baby carrots and toasted pumpkin seeds are divine. ME
BREAD IN COMMON in Fremantle does great bread and fantastic meals. A serve of in-house bread and a very fine hazelnut dukkah is generous enough for a work day lunch, and will set you back a mere $6. Or go the share plates: the octopus in tomato, ginger, cumin seed and mustard ($26) is moreish, the beetroot roasted on coals ($16) has to be tasted to be believed, and my lunch companion would trade a date with Tom Cruise for the lamb ribs with mint sauce ($23). JD
MANUKA WOODFIRE KITCHEN is onto a winner with its simple cooking concept. Everything on the menu is cooked in a woodfire oven – olives and chicken thighs are roasted, Berkshire pork is grilled, pepitas are toasted, and flatbread and fish is baked. The lamb ($22) is a clever creation: The meat is slow roasted, pulled, then compacted into small slabs and baked. A quenelle of smoked labne and a slice of grilled peach adorn each portion, and the fruit’s caramelised sugars slice through the rich lamb. Seriously impressive. ME
IT’S TRUE, there is a heaven. Culinarily speaking of course. If a child ever asks you where pigs, cows, chickens or fish go when they die, you can tell them the lucky ones go to PIGGY FOOD CO, a divine burger joint in North Fremantle where locally-bred produce becomes gut-busting, Southern Californian nosh. Currently Perth is experiencing an epidemic of bad burger joints, so readers will be happy to know that Piggy’s transcends the opposition with original creations like the Fishwich ($16) and the Whole Hog. ME
THAI KITCHEN in Applecross has plenty of gold plate awards on the walls, but it’s the food on the table that counts, and this was an award-winning dinner in my books. Entree serves of fish crepes ($6.60) and a papaya salad ($12.90) were light, tasty and got my taste buds warmed up. For mains a Thai version of a gado gado, and a wonderfully crisp fish with tamarind sauce were a match made in heaven. D’Angerous Dave then enjoyed a light and fluffy coconut-flavoured Thai custard ($7.90), which had a sweet-spicy tang. But I couldn’t go past the durian ice cream – one of my all-time favourite desserts. JD
KAZOOMIES is situated at the front of the E Shed Markets, so you can enjoy watching the bustling Fremantle port while sampling the tastes of Morocco. Go for the green shashuka ($25) – chunks of barramundi punctuate a pile of emerald green spinach, marinated eggplant and feta in a sea of turmeric-yellow butter. Or if you fancy something smaller, the spike of falafel balls ($17) are delicious. JD