Solo Pasta – Mount Lawley

Solo Pasta is the new kid on the Beaufort Street strip. It’s not your traditional Italian pasta joint at all. It brings to the dinner table a fresh and fun new concept of ordering “pasta by the metre”. I’d never really put that much thought into how much pasta, in length, that I ate! At Solo Pasta, their standard sized patsa dishes come in three metre serves, which is the average amount a person eats, if they laid out their pasta end to end!

The three of us were kindly invited to dinner at Solo Pasta by David Caro, one of its owners. He enthusiastically explained how the idea behind the new restaurant works and it sounded intriguing. The dining room is light and bright, overlooking the bustling Beaufort Street.

The menu is made up of share plates and pasta dishes, which are ordered in three steps.

  1. First you choose your type of pasta – classic, beetroot or spinach.
  2. Next choose your length of pasta, we chose the standard three metres. For those of us with big appetites, you have the option of adding extra pasta to your bowl for $4.50 per metre. Kids serves are two metres.
  3. Then you choose your sauce. There are options of tomato based sauces (like meatballs, bolognaise, chorizo and chilli and more), cream based (like carbonara, mushroom and more) and olive oil/jus based sauces.

To begin Chef and I shared the tender and tasty lemon pepper calamari, $14, served with aioli and a wedge of lemon.

There’s no kids menu at Solo Pasta. Children get to pick their pasta dish from the whole menu. They simply receive a smaller pasta serve of two metres. For $13 children also receive a soft drink and vanilla ice cream along with the pasta.

Little Chef chose the spaghetti and meatball dish, though he was also tempted by the chorizo pasta too. He absolutely loved his super long pasta, served in thick, flat strips. It was topped with the pork and kale meatballs and parmigiana reggiano. I loved that there was kale in his meatballs and he didn’t even notice!  Many of Solo Pasta’s dishes have hidden veggies and their beetroot and spinach pastas are packed with nutrients too.

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California Pizza Kitchen – Hillarys

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California Pizza Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

A taste of California has landed at Hillary’s Boat Harbour. California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) at Sorrento Quay is the very first Australian outlet of the popular American family restaurant. The atmosphere is casual and can get a little noisy – CPK is a BIG restaurant!img_3037

The menu is equally as big with loads of pizza toppings to choose from, as well as many other share plates, soups, meaty mains, a selection of pasta dishes and salads. There’s plenty of international flavours, including lots of American influences – think Jambalaya fettuccine, mac n cheese, chopped salad and roasted NY strip.img_3003

As pizza lovers we were all keen to check out this new joint, though I had heard a few mixed things about it online. I figured I’d try and ignore all the negative noise and give it a go myself. It is still a new venue after all, maybe they had had a few teething troubles?

The old Jetty’s restaurant is all shiny and new. It’s light, bright and has a modern nautical feel.  There’s tables, comfy sofas and cosy booths. We sat at a table by the open window, giving us a lovely view over the harbour and kiddies beach.img_3031

The drinks menu is also extensive, with a good range of drinks and some tempting looking cocktails. My photo turned out a bit rubbish, but here’s the “Ultimate” Bloody Mary, $18. It’s a growing trend that’s stemmed from the “Freakshake” milkshakes, that’s now spilling over to alcoholic drinks too. Tito’s Handmade Vodka, house-made Diablo horseradish sauce, tomato juice, fennel salt rim topped with spicy pepperoni, mozzarella, olive, fresh lemon and thyme. It’s a bit random to have a meat garnish on a cocktail, but I’m told it was a good version of a Bloody Mary.img_3027 Continue reading

Woodfire Restaurant – Ellenbrook

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Woodfire Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

There’s a hidden gem hiding in suburban Ellenbrook. Chef/Owner Lorenzo, formerly the Head Chef of Jamie’s Italian both here in Perth and restaurants in the UK. I got asked along to a bloggers lunch and I jumped at the chance, as I’d heard many great things about Woodfire Restaurant. West Australian Food Editor and critic Rob Broadfield also gave Woodfire a glowing review recently. I was expecting big things!img_2871

When I arrive I find the spacious restaurant is lively. The open kitchen, complete with wood fire, is bustling. There’s lots of long tables enjoying lunch. It seems like a popular place for family celebrations.img_2870

To begin our feast, we got to try a whole array of what Woodfire offers on it’s small bites menu. Served on a long board, sitting on tins of tomatoes, was “Fritto misto”. This is a selection of panfritto, crispy gnocchi, crumbed eggplant, arancini and polenta chips and is perfect for sharing. I particularly love the crumbed eggplant, but truth be told it’s all delicious.img_2822

I also dig into the “Panfritto” which are soft golden fried pizza dough bites served with spicy arrabbiata sauce and parmesan.img_2813

The “Cozze al forno” is Woodfire’s version of chilli mussels. They are baked in the wood oven and served with homemade focaccia, perfect for mopping up those yummy juices.img_2820

Next up was a selection of Lorrenzo’s pastas, which are made fresh every day at Woodfire. We tried the linguine al salmone ($23.90). A generous spiral pile of linguine pasta, tossed with Tasmanian smoked salmon, spring onions, capers, white wine and a dollop of mascarpone. Great dish. Usually I won’t order linguine or spaghetti when I eat out (as it’s not always easy to eat!), but I’d absolutely order this tasty dish again.img_2833

The handmade ravioli primavera ($23.90) is filled with spinach, ricotta and pecorino. Served with sauteed peas, asparagus and mint in a zesty lemony butter sauce. It’s a lovely light and summery pasta dish.img_2825

It was a tough call, but if I had to choose, I’d pick the “Casarecce al Maiale” ($22.90), as my favourite. The homemade casarecce pasta is served with wonderfully tender slow braised free range pork, mascarpone, lemony gremolata and herby breadcrumbs. It is so full of flavour, next time I’d like a whole bowl to myself!img_2834

Meanwhile, Little Chef is enjoying “Kai’s Ninja Turtle Pizza” from the Bambino Bites menu. All kids meals are $9.90 and there lots of healthy options. He absolutely wolfed down the pizza, which looked delicious. The freshly made base is topped with cheese and pepperoni. All proceeds from the sale of these pizzas will be donated to Kai’s Wishing Well. Kai is a little Ellenbrook boy who sadly has been having some serious health issues and the big hearted Head Chef Lorenzo has been running a few fundraisers to help Kai and his family.img_2808

I was also really impressed with the main meal selection, these meaty dishes are cooked over hot jarrah coals in their hand built fire pit, adding smoky flavours into the mix. The “coscia d’agnello”, ($33.90) grilled free range leg of lamb, is cooked perfectly medium rare. The tender lamb is served with asparagus, spring onions and an Italian mint sauce.img_2845

I’d have to bring Chef with me next time, he would love the “bavetta alla griglia” a 400g Black Angus hanger steak, $35.90. The beef is grilled on the fire pit and served with baby onions agrodolce, rosemary chips and sticky marsala jus.img_2844

The “filetto di barramundi” ($29.90) was beautifully presented. The sustainably sourced Humpty Doo Barramundi is baked in the wood oven along with potatoes, cherry tomatoes, black olives, white wine and thyme.img_2841

“Pescatrice al Prosciutto” is prosciutto wrapped sustainably caught Monkfish which is served with lentils and a mushroom ragu’, onion puree and hand chopped salsa verde.img_2840

It’s really lucky that we have a whole other stomach for dessert (hehe) as I really needed it at Woodfire. We were treated to a taster of some of their favourites. The “torta al cioccolato”, a chocolate and salted caramel tart that’s served with a dollop of creme fraiche and fresh WA strawberries was a winner.img_2859

The tutti frutti tiramisu is to die for. Luscious layers of mascarpone cream and tiramisu is mixed with summer berries, chambord liquor and caramelised almond.img_2858

The “torta di mele”, other wise known as Nonna Mari’s warm apple cake. Is topped with vanilla ice-cream and butterscotch popcorn. Another lovely dessert.img_2857

And to finish… we just couldn’t leave without trying Chef Lorenzo’s famous bomboloni (filled doughnuts). There are lots of flavours to choose from, Little Chefs favourite had to be the cookies and cream bomboloni. I really loved the salted caramel.img_2863

The residents of Ellenbrook are incredibly lucky to have this restaurant in their ‘hood.  Not only is the food top notch and beautifully presented, but the waitstaff are also very friendly and always happy to help.  We felt very welcome. I’d happily make the 25min drive myself to dine here again. We got to try so much of the menu and after all that delicious food I genuinely can’t pick a favourite – it is all so darn delicious. Do yourself a favour and check Woodfire out, you won’t be disappointed!img_2864

Huge thanks to Chef Lorenzo and his team for a totally tasty lunch. Thank you to Martin (Morsels) for organising 🙂

Lulu La Delizia – Subiaco

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Lulu La Delizia Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Until recently, Chef Joel Valvasori was Head Chef at Lalla Rookh in the city. I’d longed to go there for dinner. I’d heard and read many positive things about his celebrated traditional Italian cooking, but had never quite made it there. Once, we had our booking cancelled as the restaurant was closed suddenly on a Friday night with plumbing issues. Another time we had to cancel our booking because of the dreaded man-flu. I wondered if we’d ever find out what all the fuss was about.

When I heard Chef Valvasori was opening his own restaurant in Subiaco, I made it a priority to visit. So a couple of weeks after newbie Lulu La Delizia has opened, on a side lane off leafy Rokeby Road, we’re booked for lunch and as keen as mustard.

The eatery, named in honour of Valvasori’s Northern Italian Nonna, has a vintage feel about it. Lace curtains hang in the window, wine bottles and tinned tomatoes are stacked up the walls and lively 1950’s music grooves in the background. The Chefs busily work away in the open kitchen, where they spend hours perfecting their hand crafted pastas.img_1291

The menu is designed to share. It is made up of pasta dishes and “delights” (everything else) and we find that we want to choose most of the menu. A few of Valvasori’s signature dishes, like his famed braised bone marrow, have made to Subi. The six plate Chef’s selection menu at $62 per person sounds like the perfect choice for us.

A lot of thought has been put into the wine list, which is made up of wines from northern Italy and also Australian vineyards that use similar Italian grape varieties. I choose a Margaret River Rosé from Express Winemakers. It’s a fruity drop with raspberry and citrus notes.img_1298

An appetiser of thin cheese crisps, dusted with mushroom powder, get our juices flowing.img_1293

Next, we smother fresh house made bread with cultured butter and a rich vegetable sugo.bread-sugo

Crisp wood grilled chicken skin is served on skewers with rosemary vinegar. Chef would have happily eaten a dozen of these moreish morsels, smothered in tocj, the lip-smacking delicious pan juices.img_1299

The kingfish, cooked in an orange and aperol marinato, is served with juniper, sweet celery heart and baby cucumber. The fresh kingfish, combined with the diced veg makes a crisp, light dish.img_1306

A salad of lemon ricotta with asparagus and garden fresh broad beans is another summery dish, full of zesty flavour. It’s drizzled with a carciuga, an Italian artichoke and anchovy puree and lemon thyme.img_1313

Just as I think we need fresh plates, our friendly and on-the-ball waitress is already replacing them. Next, textural tubes of gargati pasta are served with duck livers, smoky pancetta and sweet onions. Up until now I haven’t liked liver (thanks Mum), but cooked in the right way, this offal is not as awful as I’d once thought.img_1316

The star dish for both of us is the hearty veal and pork tagliatelle della delizia. The silky flat noodles are coated, but not swamped, in a vegetable and red wine ragu which has an amazing depth of flavour.pork-taglitelli

For dessert a creamy grappa scented pannacotta vera is topped with a roasted cocoa and walnut crumble and dark orange caramel oozes down its sides.pannacotta

We finish with sweet spiced doughnuts. The fluffy deep-fried delicacies are brimming with apple, sultanas and citrus zests. Bellissimo!img_1334

At Lulu La Delizia the kitchen team has aimed to make pasta the hero and they have absolutely achieved this. Prepare to be surprised by the deceptively simple dishes at this pasta bar. Each dish at Lulu compliments the last and leaves your wanting just a little more. This is soul-warming peasant food at its best.img_1330

At a glance

Lulu La Delizia

Shop 5/97 Rokeby Rd

(Forrest Walk)

Subiaco

Phone 08 9381 2466

Opening times

Lunch – Tuesday to Friday 12-3pm

Dinner – Tuesday to Saturday 5pm till late

Rating

food 4

service 4

ambience 4

value for money 4

style Italian

wine The interesting wine list features Northern Italian drops

and Italian varieties also found in Australia.

Chef Joel Valvasori

Owners – Joel Valvasori and Ivana Pereza

feel rustic, bustling atmosphere.

wheelchair access yes

cost

Delights $4 – $38

Pasta $27 – $29

Desert $9 – $20

Chef’s selection – 6 share dishes – $62pp

all in all A top notch Italian  eatery and wine bar with a menu

where authentic, fresh pasta is the specialty.

REVISIT – Jamie’s Italian

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Jamie’s was my very first post on my new blog. Chef, Little Chef and I visited Jamie’s in its first fortnight of opening. We LOVED it. Well, that might be exaggerating a bit on Chef’s part (see original post from April 2013>>> http://thechefhiswifeperth.com/2013/04/07/jamies-italian-4-4-13/

Anyhoo, I loved it so much I was surprised it took me another 7 months to revisit. I was out with my 3 lovely High School Besties. We’d had a mini bar crawl on a sunny Sunday afternoon. As we left the Aviary the girls spotted Jamie’s. None of them had managed a visit yet – they may well have been put off by the ginormous lines that still often appear down William Street.

This is just a mini-post, since I have already blogged about Jamie’s. But I shall say that the food is still top notch; you can really tell they use QUALITY Ingredients. It is fabulous value for money and it is still very busy. We were lucky not to queue – but we did go at a non-standard eating time – 4pm on a Sunday afternoon. Saying that; the restaurant was about 70% full.

All our meals were scrumptious. We had;

LAND & SEA RISOTTO ($29) Spicy Italian sausage, pancetta, mussels, clams, white wine, black olives, baby tomatoes & field mushrooms.20131117_163538

MORTADELLA & RICOTTA PANZAROTTI ($23)  Pasta filled with mortadella & chicken, coated in blue cheese sauce. Topped with toasted, spiced nuts & apple, lemon and parsley salad20131117_163543

PROSCIUTTO, PEAR & PECORINO SALAD ($19.50) Salad of prosciutto, rocket, crisp pear, toasted pine nuts & pecorino with an olive oil & balsamic dressing1384681798852

I had the Prosciutto and OH. MY. GOD!!! It was divine. The prosciutto was pretty much the best I have had and practically melted in my mouth. It was a huge serve, but very light too. I love that I went in for an early dinner, had a Ginger Mojito too and it was under $30. LOVE it.2013-04-04 12.06.17

If you haven’t been, you really should try Jamie’s. My tip is to choose your time wisely!!