Five Bar – Mount Lawley

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Five Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
{Quick Bite}

Drinks at Five is something that I often think about, but don’t do nearly enough!  Five Bar in Mount Lawley is a Beaufort Street staple. Personally, I like to go there when it’s not too busy, when I can easily grab a spot on one of the comfy sofas.IMG_0792

I was meeting a fellow foodie there, Grace and though it was mid-week I REALLY fancied a cider. Knowing that Five has a great range, I let the friendly barman pick it for me – it was a cracker! Apart from totally loving the stripy label, the Australian Endless Pear cider was light and not too sweet. I’d have it again for sure.

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For lunch I enjoyed the more-ish mushrooms on toast. I love the use of different mushrooms – especially the enokis. The tasty dish is enough on it’s own or easy to share. Most of Five’s menu can be shared.IMG_0786

Five Bar is a great spot for drinks and has good food. I always find the barmen there particularly friendly too. I really like the chilled out, unpretentious vibe and even after a stress-y work day like this one – I always leave feeling relaxed.

And a top tip – Jerry Fraser the KING of oysters is at Five bar a couple of times week! I love Jerry to bits and he is a fountain of knowledge when it comes to these yummy little morsels. He also spends time shucking at Five Bar’s sister venue Lot 20 in Northbridge. Check out their FB page for updates.Untitledohaaa

The Brown Fox – West Perth {CLOSED}

A decade ago this West Perth bar was a haunt of mine, for after-work drinks on a Friday. Back then it was a decadent place, called The Onyx Bar. In fact, before Onyx, it was called CY O’Connors and I remember having a few cheeky long Friday lunches there with my workmates at Gwalia. In 2011 it had a complete re-vamp and became The Brown Fox. It’s not a plush and swanky bar now –though that’s not to say it doesn’t have a luxurious feel to it. Its cosy pub-style charm is mixed with chandeliers and pressed tin ceilings.

Friday night drinks at The Brown Fox are still as popular as ever. There’s a merry atmosphere of workers celebrating the start of the weekend and live music. We enjoy the bluesy tones of a certain singer Eve B – who has backing vocals on Nicki Minaj’s last album to her credit. She’s found at the Brown Fox on Friday nights, accompanied by accomplished musicians (Simon Paparo the night we visited) – at the moment her partner in crime is life-long friend Jeff Mann.

We arrive and as the sign at the door suggests we “wait to be seated”. After a minute or two it soon becomes apparent that no one is going to greet us – Chef and I decide to sit in the floral carpeted dining area, in a booth. We’re a bit confused whether there is table service or not, so we order drinks at the bar and grab some menus. Quick as a flash, a waiter arrives to take our food order, but we need more time.

The menu is typical of a suburban pub – BLT, fish and chips, steak sarnies and the like. Chef and I choose a charcuterie board ($34) to start with. Out comes a wooden board brimming with smoked chicken, chorizo, prosciutto, olives, marinated capsicum, candied nuts, blue cheese, smoked cheddar and toasted ciabatta.

Before the charcuterie board has time to be devoured, the waiter brings us our mains, with apologies for the quick arrival. I ponder that the service is generally very quick – much like the brown fox in the typing exercise back in our school days; “The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog”.

Though we didn’t get an explanation for the rush, Chef explains that this occasionally happens when part of an order is missed and something gets added on – thus throwing the timings out. In this case, we think perhaps they didn’t treat the charcuterie plate as an entrée – since at The Brown Fox the menu reads “Share Food” and “Mains”. The dining room isn’t full, so it’s safe to say they aren’t purposely hurrying us.

I’m looking for some comfort food on this cool autumn night. The Lamb shanks ($28) are cooked in a deeply rich tomato and red wine sauce – it is the perfect choice. The tender shanks are accompanied by some well-cooked seasonal veg and garlic mash – which is ever so creamy.

Chef choses the rib eye steak ($36) with beef jus, seasonal vegetables and a ginormous potato cake on the side. The equally large rib eye is cooked perfectly medium-rare and is a tasty bit of meat. Chef thinks the thyme-loaded potato cake is delicious.

The wine list is mostly local, with a few SA and NZ wines added for good measure. I choose the Lazy Dog Cider, which is made in the on-site cidery, from Sundowner and Pink Lady apples. Owners, Greg and Ant, are very enthusiastic about their brew. They hold a monthly Cider Club at the Brown Fox.

All in all we enjoy the Brown Fox for what it is – pub food with style.

REVISIT – Core Cider House

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CORE Cider House on Urbanspoon

The Core Cider House in Pickering Brook (Perth Hills) is a favourite of mine. We’ll often drop by for a cheeky drink in the gorgeous “cider garden”, having a bowl of wedges or a platter to share. On this occasion we brought our lovely English cousins along and we all had a spot of lunch.

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We sat on the shady veranda, which has sweeping views of the tree covered hills. The Cider House is in a beautiful setting and the type of place you could easily spend a few hours on a sunny day.

IMG_9834Seasonal fruit salad ($18) Fresh in-season fruit (on this occasion Pear from the orchard), candied walnuts, Blue Cheese, Fresh Spinach, Honey dressing. This was a really tasty salad. The sweet pear and tangy blue cheese complimented each other perfectly.

IMG_9835WA Barramundi ($31.50) The barramundi is sourced from Cone Bay, perfectly pan-fried with lemon pepper, orange mayonnaise, chips and a side salad.

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We all enjoyed the food (it can be hard to please 11 people!). It was tasty, well-cooked and bursting with local produce. As well as the excellent ciders (the sparkling pear is my favourite), Core also now have their own range of wine. The Sunday Session is a good time to visit. There’s musical entertainment in the garden as well as wood fired pizzas and “dude food” platters.IMG_9830

The service at Core was, as always, warm and helpful. You always feel very welcome there and even though 11 of us turned up without a booking (we couldn’t get through when we phoned), we were happily accommodated. IMG_9840

Afterwards, we walked off our lunch with a wander around the Cider Garden. The kids enjoyed running around on the lawn and the big kids enjoyed a game of boccue.IMG_9850

As a side note, my visiting cousins thought me taking photos of anything and everything quite amusing. There was a competition to get their Eagles ball in a photo! I managed to evade the ball (or crop it out), but not this one!! Haha This ones for you Paul, Adam and Matt! IMG_9836

Cheeky Monkey Brewery & Cidery – Margaret River

Cheeky Monkey Brewery & Cidery on Urbanspoon

It was a beautiful sunny day – PERFECT beer garden weather!! We arrived at Cheeky Monkey Brewery & Cidery at the start of lunch service, as we heard it was a busy venue. We had no problems with wait times for our food or getting a good table.  Little Chef made a bee-line for the gigantic fenced playground, as soon as he spotted it! We grabbed a shady picnic bench, within meters of the slides, so we could watch LC as he played.

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Chef, (surprise surprise) opted for the beef burger ($25). It consisted of a fresh sourdough roll stuffed full of a good sized beef paddy, bacon, cheddar, tomato, lettuce, pickles and cheeky’s secret sauce. It came with a side of fries and aioli. Keeping it local, the paddy was Leeuwin grass fed beef and that was full of flavour and juicy.

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I, regretting that extra scoop of simmos ice-cream, chose the calamari salad ($25). This was packed full of fresh ingredients! The tender squid was crispy, coated in a light Cajun crumb. The salad was made up of watercress, bean shoots, cos lettuce, cucumber, Spanish onion, orange segments, avocado & cherry tomatoes. They were very generous with the squid and avocado. It was dressed with a sweet and sour honey, lime & saffron vinaigrette.

Little Chef had the cheeky plate ($12). We thought that it was great to have a choice other than the standard nuggets and chips etc. On the plate was a vegemite sandwich, yoghurt, apple slices, sultanas and a juice. He thought it was brilliant. Kids love to graze and pick – this was perfect.

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Chef enjoyed the beer, He chose a fresh and crisp Kiwi pilsner named “Hatseller”. For those wine drinkers and designated drivers, fear not! There is also a cellar door in the same building as cheeky monkey. Everyone is catered for. “Killerby Cellar Store” showcases their wines as well as lots of local gourmet produce including;

– cheeses from the Blue Cow Cheese Company

– Seasonal produce from Newton Bros orchards (Manjimup)

– Yahava coffee from Vasse

– Margaret River’s Berry Farm jams

– Frankland River olive oil

– Cambinata marinated yabbies and homemade dukkah

– Pukara Estate’s caramelised balsamic vinegar and mayonnaise

– Manjimup Truffle Company truffle products

Sure it was pub food, but it was GOOD. Everything tastes so fresh and wholesome in south west WA. We enjoyed Cheeky Monkey. Mostly, as our little monkey was so well catered for. All we had to do was sit, sip and admire the view across the dam.

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Open daily from 10am-6pm

 4259 Caves Road, Margaret River

Five Bar – Mount Lawley

Five Bar on Urbanspoon

Chef and I visited Five Bar(on Beaufort Street, Mt Lawley) after our dinner last night. We were super impressed. It was a fantastic venue with big, comfy leather sofas and gorgeous chandeliers. There were plenty of people in for a mid-week night too, so it had a laid-back atmosphere. The barman was so welcoming and friendly. He gave some great advice on drinks choices. The wine list is fantastic. I LOVED the Yarra Valley Pear Cider that was recommended to me. The food that was coming out of the kitchen looked good and we’ll be back soon to try out the menu! What a great find.

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The Core Cider House – Pickering Brook

Core Cider House on Urbanspoon

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This little gem is set amongst the shady Pickering Brook orchards, in the Perth Hills. We’ve visited twice now and will be most definitely heading back for another sunny afternoon drink in the “Cider Garden”. Its well worth a weekend drive up “Lesmurdie Hill”.

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Next time I think we’ll stop for a spot of lunch too or another yummy taste plate. I can hear the delish Sparkling Pear Cider calling my name….