Perth Night Noodle Markets 2016

IMG_2766Have you been to the Night Noodle Markets yet? It’s part of Good Food Month. Last night we checked out this years line up of 20+ stallholders with hawker style eats under the city lights at Elizabeth Quay.IMG_2789

I’d heard how popular the markets are, so as soon as I got there I made a bee-line for Bao Stop which was top of my food wish list. They are a mobile container restaurant based in Sydney. For the uninitiated, bao is essentially a small, soft Chinese bread bun. First in the line, I ordered the bao trifecta ($20). Wow -those bao were jam packed with flavoursome fillings and if you think $20 is a bit steep, I think this dish is worth the splurge. (Left to Right) There’s Peking Duck, Pork Belly and Fried Chicken. I loved them all – the fried chicken had to be my favourite.IMG_2763

The Peking duck fries ($15) were also a must try for me. I would have like the fries to be hotter, but topped with a sweet plum sauce and shredded, crisp duck they were pretty darn fine.IMG_2761

Hoy Pinoy Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
Hoy Pinoy was a favourite of ours from last years Night Noodle Markets. Their smokin skewers are divine, $13 for two. Choose from chicken BBQ’d in a traditional marinade or BBQ pork belly with a banana ketchup glaze. Chef ignored my “no eating before pics” rule, his pork belly skewers were so good!IMG_2786

I visited the lovely Mei at Turban Chopsticks and she has some tasty options for those with dietary requirements. Most of her dishes are vego, vegan and gluten free. The satay “gado gado” noodle bowl is so fresh and vibrant – proving healthy food can be super tasty too! Its brimming with rainbow salad, kale, tofu, coconut milk, tapioca chips, rice noodles and finished with a nicely spiced satay sauce. Yummy! (gifted).IMG_2780

Mei also gave us some sweetcorn fritters to try. The crisp fritters were accompanied by a tomato eggplant chutney and they went down an absolute treat! IMG_2781

Time for something sweet… Black Star Pastry hails from Sydney and I have had my eye on their stunning  Strawberry Watermelon Cake for some time (via Instagram!). It’s a scrumptious layered cake made up of almond dacquoise, rose-scented cream, strawberries, watermelon and finished beautifully with dried rose petals and pistachios. It costs $9 and is worth every cent.IMG_2770

Black Star Pastry has teamed up with N2 Extreme Gelato, who have stores in Mebourne and Sydney . Little Chef scoffed their Ferrero Gelato, $9. It has a crisp rice bubble choc top and a chocolate ganache filled syringe. I had a bite and the Ferrero Rocher gelato was spot on.IMG_2769

Not to be outdone, Chef’s dessert was a fancy Nutella covered waffle from Waffle on a Stick. It was served warm and super fresh.IMG_2802

It’s simply impossible to try everything – though we gave it a good go! Other local and interstate vendors include: Dainty Dowager, Low Key Chow House, Apple Daily, Lucky Chans, Bangkok Jump Street, Cili Padi, Roti Road and more. There’s also a few bars scattered around and live entertainment too making for a fantastic atmosphere.

IMG_2795All in all the Night Noodle Markets are a great event. My tip is to get there when it opens  to grab a table and minimise queueing. I saw a few people who brought picnic rugs, which is a good idea too. There were a few reservations about accessibility, but with the EQ train and bus stations, the ferry and plenty of parking, the foodie event is pretty easy to get to. Get your noodle on before the Night Noodle Markets end this Sunday (10th of April). See you next year!IMG_2805

For more info visit the Good Food Month website.

HopsScotch – Roleystone

IMG_0634HopsScotch Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Little Chef, my parents and I took a drive to Roleystone in the Perth Hills. Along Brookton Highway we found a quaint little cottage café, HopsScotch, to stop for a spot of lunch.IMG_0630

Driving up the gravel track, flanked with tall trees, I felt at home. As an ex-hillbilly I do miss the fresh smell of gumtrees and the sound of Kookaburras laughing away. Walking down little pathways to get from the car park to the café its clear that there is more to HopsScotch than simply being a café in the bush. There’s a lot to explore – after lunch of course! A tip – take your flats/walking shoes. I came in my heels (straight from work) and they didn’t fare too well on the gravel paths.IMG_0624

The property has been taken over by new owners in recent years and the cottage fully renovated. There is plenty of cosy seating inside by the fireplace and out under the enclosed verandas too. IMG_0607

The lunch menu is made up of small dishes (perfect for sharing), salads and something a bit more substantial – there are also sandwiches and sweet treats in the cabinet. Their hot drink selection are T2 teas and the Essenza coffee blend. As I placed our order at the counter, I spied a familiar face in the kitchen, Chef Sebastian Sindermann. He is the new Head Chef at HopsScotch. It was such a surprise and so lovey to see him. Chef used to work with him at the Duxton Hotel, in a time well before I was the Chef’s Wife! It must have been almost a decade since I saw him last. My, how time flies!

I felt like something light, so I picked the avocado bruschetta ($10.50) from the small plates part of the menu. Topped with fresh avocado, tomato, onion, feta and pesto it was very tasty and with 3 pieces easy to share too.IMG_0615

My Mum enjoyed the battered barramundi with fries and house made tartare sauce ($25). IMG_0612

My Dad is quite a carnivore, though he’s always had a thing for roasted vegetables, particularly eggplant. He loved the veggie stack ($16.50) of eggplant, zucchini, capsicum and sweet potato – finished with tomato relish and a chive sour crème.IMG_0610

With the promise of a play on the playground, Little Chef wolfed down his kids meal of house made crumbed barramundi and fries $10, which includes a drink.IMG_0611

There is extensive gardens to explore as well as a fully fenced modern playground.IMG_0632

The grounds at HopsScotch are charming. Just when you think you’ve seen it all you turn another corner and discover something new!IMG_0623

There are lots of surprises too – which the kids love!IMG_0626IMG_0628

There are many pieces of art scattered throughout the gardens and some of it is also for sale.

We thought the Modern Australian café style food was tasty, fresh and well priced. Little Chef would have liked a little more time to explore, so I’m sure we’ll be back again soon. What a gem!IMG_0625

Pata Negra – Nedlands {CLOSED}

Snapper
Pata Negra Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

David Coomer is one of Western Australia’s most celebrated chefs – with a reputation for sourcing top local produce and never compromising on quality. For years his iconic fine diner, Star Anise, was the place to go for an unforgettable meal.

His Spanish tapas restaurant Pata Negra feels like a small bar straight out of Catalonia – black walls, warm lighting, rustic furniture and charming mismatched glassware. There is a courtyard out the back, strewn with lanterns, a wonderful space to dine on a warm summers evening.IMG_0680

The wine list has an undeniably Spanish influence, with Tempranillo being a prominent choice. We select a bottle of smooth Pinot Noir ($85) from the small Dexter winery on the Mornington Peninsular.

The menu of share plates reads; Tapas, The Earth (Vegetarian), The Sea (Seafood), The Land (Meat), The Dairy (Cheese) and more – with four options under each food category. I feel a little overwhelmed at what to pick – there are so many tasty possibilities! Our waitress suggests we choose the “Vamos a darle de Comer” menu, which roughly translates as “we are going to give food”. For $86 per person, the kitchen sends out a random selection of dishes to our table.

Little bowls of mixed olives and spiced almonds, from the tapas menu, gets our tastebuds started. Next is xarcuteria (charcuterie) and we enjoy a platter of mouth-watering cured meats serrano, chorizo and fennel salami.IMG_0685

A chicken liver pate, with a layer of madiera jelly, has a depth of flavour so often lacking in pates. We spread it thickly onto sliced crusty sourdough and relish every morsel.IMG_0683

From “the sea” we try Arroz negro – a rice dish similar to seafood paella. The al dente rice, flavoured with squid ink, is served with a generous dolop of allioli – the Spanish alternative to aioli. We mix the creamy allioli into the paella and add a squeeze of lemon juice. This tasty dish is one of Pata Negra’s mainstays and I can see why – the cuttlefish is tender and the black rice has a perfectly thin crisp layer on the base.IMG_0688

The gold band snapper ceviche, with smooth avocado, cucumber and dainty little radishes work well together to make a fresh and flavoursome dish – with a punch of summery citrus tang.IMG_0686

We are served a cracking fennel dish, from “The earth”. It is served with garden-fresh broad beans. The flavours of the dish are well balanced with salty anchovy, creamy pecorino cheese and sweet basil.IMG_0696

The wood roasted asparagus, served with a more-ish romesco sauce, is deliciously simple. David Coomer also runs Xarcuteria deli in Claremont and this romesco sauce took me back to the time Chef and I enjoyed some scrumptious take away pork belly rolls and eating them on the Cottesloe foreshore.IMG_0692

From “The land” we devour the Rangers Valley skirt steak, served with kohlrabi, a horseradish cream and hot sauce. I’m so glad that we chose the “trust the chef” menu, as I probably wouldn’t have picked this dish. Skirt steak is one of those cuts of meat which is inexpensive and full of flavour – but often not cooked correctly. Here, it is so tender, it melts in the mouth. Perfection. The kohlrabi, similar to a turnip, is an interesting addition to the dish.Skirt Steak

We finish our dinner with scrumptious cinnamon doughnuts, house made ice-cream flavoured with Spanish sherry Pedro Ximenez, topped with plump raisins.IMG_0702

With new restaurants continuously opening in Perth, it is so easy to get swept up in the buzz and excitement and forget a little about the existing Perth kitchens that are doing an exceptional job. For us, Pata Negra is THE tapas spot in Perth.IMG_0704

** Originally printed in the Post Newspaper **

At a glance

■ Pata Negra

26 Stirling Highway

Nedlands

Phone 08 9389 5517

■ Opening times

Tuesday to Saturday

6pm to Midnight

Friday Lunch noon to 3pm

■ Rating

food 5

service 4

ambience 4

value for money 3

■ style – Spanish Tapas

■ wine –Spanish inspired

wine list. BYOW cellar

night Wednesdays

■ Chef – David Coomer

■ Owners – David Coomer

■ feel – intimate and relaxed

■ wheelchair access – no

■ cost

Small Plates- $6.50 to $35

Larger plates – $17.50 to $37.50

Dessert – $16 to $24

■ all in all – Delicious food –

perfectly balanced flavours,

interesting produce and

spot-on technique. Attentive

service and fab venue.

Haandi

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Haandi Joondalup on Urbanspoon

Haandi, an award winning Indian restaurant in Fremantle has recently opened in Joondalup. On a recommendation from a friend with an Indian background, who knows a good curry when he eats one, we tried Haandi for a family dinner. So it wasn’t just myself and Chef that had to be impressed, but the Pastry Chef (Chef’s little bro) and Pappa Chef, Chef’s dad who’s been in the hospitality industry for some 40 years.We were warmly greeted and seated. We had a complimentary basket of poppadums to nibble on whilst we looked over the menu. For entrée we share some onion baji and tandoori chicken – cooked in the tandoor oven. They were both very good and made me hungry for more!IMG_7020

The six of us decided to share everything, so we chose a selection of dishes ranging from $19.50 to $22. We had super fresh garlic nann (which smelled A-Mazing!), roti and plain basmati rice, plus our dishes;

 Lamb Rogan Josh
 Lamb Vindaloo
 Butter Chicken
 Lamb Saag

IMG_7027Pappa Chef commented that Indian and other Asian cuisines do vegetarian food so much better than many western cultures. At Haandai they cater for vegos very well, with a whopping 30 vegetarian dishes on the menu. In addition to our meat dishes, we also tried a Shahi Paneer (cheese) curry ($16.50) and Jeera Aloo Gobi – potatoes and cauliflower sautéed with ginger and cumin seeds ($16.50) and we really enjoyed them too.

I’ve had Indian meals where everything tastes quite similar. I’ve also had Indians where the spice completely overpowered everything and all I could think about was how much my mouth was burning. At Haandi we had none of those issues. The tasty food was varied and though spicy, I didn’t feel the need to down a drink!

The Pastry Chef was keen to try some dessert, so we had Kulfi ($5). It’s a frozen dessert, similar to ice cream, topped with pistachios. It was a good way to finish off a top meal.IMG_7029

Everyone at the table really enjoyed their meals. It cost us about $65 a couple, so we thought that was pretty good value. That wasn’t including drinks as it’s BYO. Looks like we’ve found a new favourite local Indian. IMG_7032