Hylin, West Leederville

For anyone who doesn’t follow my blog, my office moved from Leederville to West Leederville at the beginning of 2014. Since then, two new cafes have opened up within 250m of my office, with yet another due to open in the coming weeks. The most recent addition (to what’s now become consumers choice) Hylin, opened on the 1st October, and very quickly became my cafe of choice.

hylin art

The first thing you notice when you come into the cafe is it’s wonderful atmosphere. A combination of happy customers, lively staff and smart architecture really brings the place alive, and makes it feel like you’ve escaped from the city -if only for a while. With a lot of natural sunlight, and an unpretentious unique twist in it’s design, it’ isn’t a surprise to discover the owner Josh started off as an architect before bringing Hylin to us lucky folk of West Leederville. In my experience, you’ll often find him behind the register, which is a wonderful thing. He takes pride in his cafe, smiling and happily chatting with each customer. The staff reflect this genuinely friendly attitude, high quality customer service.

Hylin Coffee

Being a long black drinker, there’s no where to hide when it comes to my coffee. Hylins coffee beans come from Micrology Coffee Roasters in Fremantle, with 250g bags available for purchase as the counter. The barista’s tailor their bean of choice to your coffee of choice, delivering the perfect flavour profile every time. Best of all, the pricing is very kind too, starting at $3.00 for a single espresso.

Hylin Micrology

The food is currently an assortment of glass box eats, with nutella and banana slice bagels a favourite of mine to see every morning, as well as a couple tasty breakfast options. Some of these tasty treats are supplied by The Holy Bagel Company, whilst the chefs dish out the rest. In addition to this, it’s been said a breakfast menu should be made available shortly.

Hylins Holy Bagel

Hylin is to me exactly what the area needed… an unpretentious, modern cafe, with great coffee at a good price, a nice atmosphere, wonderful hospitality and some enjoyable eats. I think I’m in love.

Hylin Menu 2

Hylin on Urbanspoon

Six Senses Thai Restaurant, Subiaco

I know I’ve been extremely quiet lately due to my final couple months of university (finally it’s less than a month away), however this restaurant experience(s) stirred something inside me so much so I just had to stay up late to review it.

To celebrate my last day as a Public Relations intern in Subiaco, I was treated to lunch at a place of my choice. With my old go-to restaurant now closed I wanted to pick somewhere that would have a nice atmosphere, a wide variety of good food and still remain well priced. After being named dropped by one of the girls, I decided to take a chance on Six Senses Thai Restaurant. It seemed to have something for everyone, from satay and pad thai to curry and stir frys, this BYO restaurant sounded like the perfect place. Little did I know what I was about to experience.

My first impression of Six Senses was that it was a sexier version of my favourite Thai restaurant in Victoria Park, and just like that restaurant it was very busy. We walked in and were greeted immediately. Even though they were full, the staff offered us to squeeze ourselves onto one of the two small tables outside. With the weather being so nice that afternoon it was exactly what I was hoping for, so we gladly accepted. After quickly propping up one of the legs of the table  which was a making the table wobble, we quickly skimmed through the menu already knowing what we were keen to order.
Stir-fried pumpkin
I picked the vegetarian Stir Fried Pumpkin [$17.50] (stir-fried pumpkin, snow peas, capsicum, mushroom, tofu, egg and coriander with Six Senses special sauce), whilst the girls picked their own Satay Stir Fry combinations [$17.50] (one with chicken and rice and the other with beef and rice).
Satay Chicken
As the dishes were ready they came out one at a time (though within a minute of each other), we tucked in immediately, and my golly-gosh it was better than I expected. To roughly quote our discussion whilst devouring out lunches, the satay was so good it was only second to one other satay the girls had enjoyed oversea, which to me says a lot. Each dish was cooked perfectly. The ingredients tasted fresh, packing lots of flavour and textures. Simply put, each of our meals were delicious!
Satay Beef
Having had such a good experience on the Thursday afternoon, when my friend and I were going to see a performance at the Subiaco Arts Centre I suggested we caught up over dinner first at Six Senses. Even though we had arrived quite early in the evening the restaurant was booked out. However, yet again, after being greeted immediately, we were offered to squeeze ourselves onto one of the little tables outside, and once again I happily accepted.
Assorted Stir Fried Vegetables
Just as I had a couple days earlier, I came in knowing what I was after, the Assorted Stir Fried Vegetables with Oyster Sauce [$17.50]. My friend looked through the menu, but it wasn’t long before she came across the Pad Thai King Prawns [$29.50] (stir-fried thin rice noodles in Six Senses special pad thai sauce served with char grilled king prawns). The food came out reasonably quickly, but as previously, each dish came out one at a time though still within a minute of each other. My friends eyes lite up when she saw her dish placed on the table, and I’m not surprised. It looked amazing. I told her to tuck in, and not long after my dish arrived in all its glory (which I think can be hard to accomplish with just vegetables) and I got to join in.
Pad Thai King Prawns
Just as my lunch a couple days earlier each of our dishes tasted fresh, packing lots of flavour and textures. Simply put, each of our meals once again were delicious! This made me beyond happy, as two of my favourite qualities – quality and consistence – seemed to truly thrive here.

With great food, a nice atmosphere, friendly service and good pricing I can’t help but love this (clearly not so hidden) gem in Subiaco. It’s definitely on my list of favourite go-to restaurants, and I’ve already highly recommended it to the few friends and family members I’ve seen and spoken to in the few hours since my second visit.

Thank you Melissa for recommending Six Senses to me on my last day.

Six Senses Thai Restaurant on Urbanspoon

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.