Wagamama, Subiaco

Wagamama, Subiaco opened it’s doors on March 1, 2006. More than 8 years later it’s sad to see the place close down the weekend just gone (mid September 2014). Interning in Subiaco, I was lucky to grab one final meal at Wagamama when I was invited to a casual work lunch on a Friday afternoon.

otsunaaji portobello salad and duck gyozasWagamama - Carrot, Apple and Ginger JuiceIt was just after lunch when we arrived to the quiet restaurant. We were immediately greeted, seated and each given a menu. We were promptly served water, and the polite and friendly waitress and asked if we would like any additional beverages. I grabbed a new, fresh carrot, apple and ginger juice [$4.90/$6.50] whilst my colleagues enjoyed a glass of wine each.

The specials menu was very reasonably prices, offering a lot of bang-for-your-buck for anyone on a budget but still after some quality, filling food. Sticking with the new items on the menu I couldn’t help but order the  [$17.20], which the girls decided to stick to the tried and proven classics like duck gyozas (5) for starters,  [$20.60] and  [$20.40].otsunaaji portobello salad

The drinks came out promptly with the duck gyozas [$9.90]. We chatted away whilst enjoying our beverages and nibbling on the crispy, juicy and tasty gyozas until the food followed soon after. The moment the gorgeous plates were placed in front of us the conversation slowly faded as we tucked into our delicious meals. The flavours of the salad was fresh, lively, and a lot more filling than I expected. My colleagues dishes didn’t disappoint either. Packed full of flavour and leaving everyone in a mini food coma of delight.teriyaki raisu chicken

Wagamama has a large, open atmosphere, with plenty of various tables in different sections of the restaurant to choose from. With it being so quiet, it was interesting to think back to just how big and lively the place was when it first opened, and customers were spilling onto the streets.thai style stir-fried noodles

The closing of Wagamama really makes me feel like it’s the end of an era. Coming in for (what I didn’t realise at the time would be) my final meal here, I didn’t expect to have such a great experience. Looking back now makes me question the reason for this restaurant closing. With it being so quiet it may have simply been that the spark in the relationship between the restaurant and Perth simply faded over time, with the trendy folks of this town constantly chasing the latest, hottest tends. It really is a shame to see this place close, but final great experience of Wagamama will definitely leave me with fond memories.

Wagamama on Urbanspoon

Chatterbox, Mount Lawley

20140804_132530Graduating from Edith Cowan University at the end of 2010, it was strange stepping back onto the campus in early August. My friend was working on campus and had asked me to stop by. I was having a lot of flashbacks since the campus hadn’t changed much. Being such a small university campus the food options have always been limited the just a couple cafes. It was nice to hear that a second mini cafe had opened up somewhere on campus, but what really got my attention was the student village. It has been completely redone, with the inclusion of a little restaurant/cafe on the corner.

Atmosphere
Tucked into a corner of the student village, the cafe was relatively quiet initially on the sunny Monday afternoon, with a couple students waiting for their meals and a couple faculty sitting outside with coffees. There was plenty of tables and chairs available out side, and some seating available inside for anyone wanting to wait for the their take-away meals indoors. The cafe is small and open, selling both food, coffee and emergency student necessities like tampons -which may seem weird at first, but make complete sense with it’s student housing location and demographic. It’s also worth mentioning, Chatterbox has a strong focus on sustainability. The take-away box my meal came in is environmentally friendly, and the ingredients are primarily sources from local Western Australian produce.

Service
As entered, the lady behind the counter immediately smiled and asked if she could help. After taking a minute to gander at the menu I approached the counter and placed my order. The lady explained to me it would take about 5-10 minutes to make the order as it was made fresh, and so I took a seat outside in the sunshine. When my meal was ready, the lady brought it to where I was seating and told me to help myself to cutlery and anything I needed from inside.
20140804_133145Food
At Chatterbox you’ll get a simple, quick but fresh, no fuss meal that will fill you up on the cheap. The menu ranges from single Dim Sum snacks, noodle dishes, rice dishes, salads, spaghetti, thai and curries. I ordered the Teriyaki Fish with Rice for $6.50, which was one of the more expensive options on the menu believe it or not. The fish was crispy, the side salad fresh and the rice was well cooked. My only complaint would be that the teriyaki sauce was incredibly sweet for my taste, however for $6.50 I simply mixed in the sauce with the rice and couldn’t care less. The meal was filling, satisfying my hunger and in comparison to the tasteless ‘gourmet’ salad my friend had purchased from a competitor on campus for $9.50. She help but say several times over the meal that her salad selection was tasteless and a total rip off, reaffirming my choice.
20140804_133206Price
Prices here are set low to cater to the students, ranging from $1.50 for a Pork Dim Sum to $7.50 for the Chicken Ramen Burger. Averaging about $5.80 a main meal, if I was a student on campus it would be hard to convince me to eat elsewhere, especially considering the alternative offerings and pricing.
Snapchat-20140804012351[1]Summary
Chatterbox is a gift to the campus. With such few competitors within walking distance, and many of the students on a tight student budget, it’s easy to see why Chatterbox is perfect for the location. The hidden student in me secretly can’t wait to try something else on the menu -maybe the Char Kway Teow- next time I’m visiting my friend on campus, and makes me wish Chatterbox was open when I was a student at ECU.

-The Grizzly Bear Perth

Chatterbox on Urbanspoon

Toms Cafe, Leederville

For healthy yet tasty lunches on the go.
Cuisine: Salads, Sandwhich, Coffee.

Located in Tip Top Arcade on Oxford Street in Leederville, Toms café is a little casual gem for local workers seeking out a quick and healthy lunch. It’s not the type of place you sit around, as seating is very casual and limited. Having previously worked in Leederville I reviewed Toms Cafe in 2013. Click here to read my previous review. Now working over the bridge in West Leederville, I recently visited Leederville for lunch and decided to try Tom’s again.

Service: The service is just as pleasant and quick as it has always been. As I was browsing the fridges one of the serves quickly came over to ask if she could help before Tom recognised me and asked whether I had left my job or what had happened to my office as he’d noticed we weren’t around as much these days. It was lovely to see he’d remembered and noticed. It’s worth remembering Toms does not offer Eftpos, though a selection of ATMs are available on the street.

Food: Rather than opting for a mix of salads I decided to purchase one of the pre-packed ½ price large containers of salad for $6. The salad was a combination of the edamame with corn and   Israeli couscous salads, and it was still extremely fresh and delicious! So much so it may have become my new personal favourite. These ½ price large containers of prepacked salads can be found on the left side of the first fridge.

Toms café still offers a wide variety of fresh salads, soups (in winter) and a variety of traditional hot and cold deli foods such as sausage rolls, subs and soups etc. Once the only local offering healthy fresh salads, wraps etc a new competitor offering a selection of salads, wraps, bagels along with their main offering of fresh juices and smoothies has now opened opposite to Toms. It will be interesting to see how -if at all- this affects this local gem.
Half Price Container Tom's Cafe

Price: A variety of takeaway container sizes are available starting at $6 for a small container which you can fill with 1 or 2 different salads. Though the smaller containers seem small they are always packed to the brim and surprisingly filling so you definitely get your moneys worth of fresh, healthy, delicious food. However, if you’re looking for a cheaper option, there is always the ½ price selection which is worth having a look through.

Summary: As I said before, I’ll say again, Toms Café is a great hidden gem for lunch on the run. The food is fresh and the variety exceptional, so much so that even salad avoiders are guaranteed to find something worth trying. It’s definitely worth giving it a go.

Tom's Cafe on Urbanspoon

Nutritional Notes:
Tom’s cafe makes it really easy to eat healthy on the go, with a variety of fresh soups, salads, wraps and other foods. As long as you ignore the small hot counter offering sausage rolls and chips (which is easy to walk past) it’s pretty hard to go wrong. The choices of salads are vast, so remember to choose a mix of wholesome, wholegrain and vegetable packed salads, and opting for those with little to no dressing or refined carbohydrates. That way your body as well as your taste buds will thank you.

-The Grizzly Bear

Menulog Winner Announced

Over the last two weeks you’ve all been liking The Grizzly Bear Perth Facebook page and leaving comments about what you would order if you won a $25 Menulog voucher, and who would you share it with.

Menulog WinnerThe winner was drawn at random last night from a purple bucket of names by my mum – she’s been making all the lovely crêpes you’ve been seeing.

Congratulations – Kenton Baird
“Crust Pizza, because I share a house with three other people and I know what they like.”

I’ll be in touch, and look forward to hearing all about your Menulog experience.

menulog

 

 

 

-The Grizzly Bear

Who Is The Grizzly Bear – Perth?

After my short stint away from The Grizzly Bear Perth, I’ve come back refreshed and with a bit of a refreshed perspective on food blogging. So I thought it was time I told you a little about myself, so now you can not only get a taste of my reviews and foodie opinions, but you can get a little taste of girl behind those words.

I was asked these questions recently whilst registering myself as a food blogger on another website, and they seemed like a great way of showing you a little insight into who The Grizzly Bear – Perth (TGBP) really is.

Tell us about yourself and why you decided to start your blog.

1405663665916Back in early 2013 I had started a food blog which mostly comprised of recipes, until an incredible restaurant experience made me need to share my moment with the world. From that point on the blog very quickly became dominated by restaurant reviews, and the more I blogged the more I realised food was all I talked about. Not only was most of my income now being spent on groceries and eating out, but my friends were constantly asking me for restaurant recommendations and cooking recipes, so I figured, why just talk about it with my friends when I can write about it and share my knowledge and experiences with others people out there too. Because of this, I began to meet more of my local foodie community and found it so warm, welcoming and vibrant that I couldn’t help but get more involved.

Now in mid-2014, I hope to bring all my followers a blog where full of my own unique perspectives, flavours and twists on everything foodie, especially if it’s from Perth.

What does food mean to you?

It simple means family, friends and love.

Coco & The Grizzly Bear Square ProfileBorn into a Polish family I was brought up on my mother’s freshly cooked wholesome meals, which kick started my love of food and cooking. To this day my mum still show her love through her cooking, and has passed on this trait to me. Beyond my family I’ve been lucky enough to met a lot of people and families throughout my life, all of which have taught me a lot about about different varieties of food, flavours and cuisines. This has allowed me to expand my culinary knowledge as well as allowing me to explore and enjoy a lot of amazing and unique foods.

What would you eat for your last meal?

20140710_165956I’m so indecisive that I get the feeling I’d either have to flip a coin or have someone surprise me. However, I get the feeling it would look something along the lines of a pot of my mum’s barscz (Polish beetroot soup), an entire tray of vegetarian lasagne (cooked by my best friend) and an overly indulgent cheesecake (made by my best mate). Warm, comforting and super indulgent.

What’s your favourite Australian food city? Why?

Snapchat-20140703014451My love of food has gone hand in hand with my passion for travelling, which has allowed me to taste and enjoy many of the unique flavours this great world has to offer. But even having tasted some of the most thrilling home-cooked dishes as well as having eaten in some of the most amazing restaurants around the world, I’ve always found there’s simply no better place to explore and enjoy food then in my home town of Perth, Australia.

Favourite Fornightly Foodie Photos

I’ve always enjoyed taking photos of the foods I come across. So when I finally purchased a nice new smart phone, the camera quality simply enouraged the behaviour. Because I take so many foodie photos, I thought I’d take a moment to share some of my favourites from the fortnight just passed (27 July – 11 August). To be completely honest, as this is my first foodie photo recap, there may be just a couple images that I’ve snuck in from a couple days earlier.

The Office On Harrogate, West Leederville
Quiche and SaladQuiche and Salad

Burger
BurgerBowl of Salad
Bowl of Salad

Chili Mussel Special
Chili Mussel Special


Tom’s Cafe, Leederville
1/2 Price Large Salad
Review coming to The Grizzly Bear Perth next week!1/2 Price Large Salad

The Naked Fig, Swanbourne
Millbrook Winery DegustationMillbrook Winery DegustationCeleriac Soup Shooter With Tea and Wasabi Flavoured BreadCeleriac Soup Shooter With Tea and Wasabi Flavoured Bread

Homemade
Banana Bread – By MeBanana Bread - By Me

Quiche Lorraine – By MeQuiche Lorraine - By MeEggy Toast and Sausage BBQ – By My FriendEggy Toast and Sausage BBQ - By My Friend

Pankcakes – By My FriendPankcakes - By My Friend

Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing  – By Me
Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing  - By Me

Chocolate Brownie Cake  – By MeChocolate Brownie Cake  - By Me

Strawberry Crepes With Caramel Sauce – By My MumStrawberry Crepes With Caramel Sauce - By My MumMixed Berry Crepe Parcels With Caramel Sauce – By My MumMixed Berry Crepe Parcels With Caramel Sauce - By My Mum

 

The Office On Harrogate, West Leederville

Hipster paradise by day, trendy bar by night (Wed-Sun), when my office moved to West Leederville at the beginning of the year, my offices café was yet to be built and good coffee in the immediate area was limited to a few key cafes… one of those being The Office on Harrogate. Having now frequented The Office for meetings, coffee with my boss and dine-in lunches with colleagues over the past several months I feel as though I’m now truly able to gauge The Office.

The Office On Harrogate Quiche and Salad

Atmosphere: With somewhat limited competition in the immediate area, The Office on Harrogate seizes the opportunity to monopolise it’s hipster charm. The Office on Harrogate is a modern hipsters paradise with freshly squeezed juices served in mason jars, burgers served on wooden boards and a young energetic workforce behind the counter. It is small and trendy, with a range of indoors and outdoor seating options. In winter, the staff place heaters outside if required, so you can enjoy outdoor seating without getting uncomfortable. Due to it’s capacity The Office is not overly suitable for large groups over 10 or so, however I’m sure the friendly staff there would be more than happy to try any arrange something if asked.Salad Bpwl from The Office On Harrogate

Service: In my experience, the staff are always fresh and lively. They’re polite, charming and are great to have a quick chat with whilst ordering. On the rare occasion that I’ve not been first at the counter (usually due to a busy peak around morning tea/coffee time), the staff have always managed to serve the line of caffeine deprived office workers very efficiently and with a fun smile.The Office On Harrogate Burger

Food/Cost: Much like the staff the food at The Office is always fresh and lively. The specials board is always full with a great variety of lunch options from salads and quiches to wraps and burgers and the counter is always full of little snacks and treats to enjoy alongside a coffee. Whilst I’ve personally enjoyed the salads and quiches myself, whilst my colleagues have enjoyed the burgers, I most recently I jumped onto a $15 chili mussel lunch special and was beyond delighted. The sauce was thick with chili and garlic and the bread was thick, making it perfect was soaking up the last of the sauce. I couldn’t stop smiling (like a kid with a bowl of candy in front of her, according to my colleague) as I enjoyed each mussel, splashing the sauce all over myself, my face and the table. I liked my fingers clean and polished off every drop of scrumptious sauce with the bread. Needless to say I spent the better part of the following hour bragging about how great my lunch was. Whilst I was ravaging my chilli mussels a colleague was tucking into a Chicken Burger from the board with a Redbull for $20. The burger  had lashings of cranberry sauce and was generous on the brie cheese, which was the same burger experience he’d had with a beef burger just a couple weeks earlier. My colleague was smiling at his burger and I could help but feel like I’d won a mini lottery with my Friday afternoon lunch.

As for the coffee, I still continue to walk down to The Office regularly for my usual tasty medium take-away long black ($4.50) and a smile, even though my office has a café located under the building.20140725_133754

Summary: The Office knows it’s surrounds and makes the most of it’s location, selecting it’s food and setting it’s pricing for the office workers of the immediate area. It’s a trendy place that definitely follows the principle of quality first, whilst still being somewhere you can get a great feed at a great price, especially if you play your cards right. If you want to enjoy what The Office has to offer but are a little strapped on cash the best time to visit The Office would be on either a Wednesday night for $10 Lamb Shanks or Thursday night for $10 Chili Mussels. That way you can see what The Office has to offer at only the cost of a lunch wrap.

The Office on Harrogate on Urbanspoon

Nourishing Notes:
The Office On Harrogate makes it simple to satisfy everyone. It has plenty of full-flavour, satisfying, health conscious options (that I simply love) as well as plenty of the usual subjects, but with the Office’s flavoursome gourmet twist (which my carnivorous male colleague always adores).

- The Grizzly Bear