Sticking with the Southey theme of late, for the final food review of the year a mix of the regulars check out a hidden gem South of the River, Gooseberries Cafe opposite Kensington Primary School.
I must confess: this review has actually been split over three separate visits to Gooseberries. On the first visit, I forgot to take enough photos and so had to go back for the second visit. The third visit was just because I really like the place - and you will too!
The food at Gooseberries is really, really good.
On our visits we tried:
- Bacon & Egg Roll - the Rose Gold Boyfriend Experience's regular choice. The only criticism is that it may be slightly lacking bacon, and on occasion TRGBE has ordered extra bacon to go with it. A good choice for when you're not ravenous.
- Gooseberries Pancakes - For a sweet breakfast, served with maple syrup, banana and strawberries. Twas lovely.
- Eggs Benedict - My personal favourite, the benedict comes with a chunk of soft focaccia and a fairly thick hollandaise sauce. I recommend ordering it with bacon, which has always been extra crispy.
- Summer Brekkie - For some reason it seems I didn't get a photo of this, but Ms. Grey spoke very highly of it. A somewhat lighter breakfast but scrumptious.
- Avocado on Toast - Rose Gold's goto meal, with a side of poached eggs. A very pretty plate, though lacking decadence.
All dishes were extremely impressive and well worth the prices. I'm actually a bit surprised they're not charging more - which, given the tone of the Blog this year, is a wonderful note to end on.
Rose Gold's only real complaint about the food is that they aren't serving her previously favorite dish. I'm told they used to do a single pancake and a single poached egg on a single piece of toast, but now they don't offer it. Apparently it would really hit the spot and satisfied her desire for a little bit of everything. Now, she's forced to choose between a lot of delicious pancakes or a lot of perfectly poached eggs. The horror.
In addition to some of the best food we've had all year (certainly the best breakfast) Gooseberries will also whip out some fresh fruit juices to start your day. Unfortunately I didn't get photos of them all, but we've seen many tables order orange juices and other fruit cocktails.
Coffees and teas are available as well of course, and all reasonably priced.
Service is good, often with the same a friendly guy on the counter (who picked me as a regular after visit #2, which I thought was a nice touch) and a number of helping hands throughout the cafe. We have a suspicion one of the waiters might be the owner's son.
Tables get cleared of empty plates very quickly and the two group visits received our meals within 15-20 mins, and when visiting as a twosome meals were ready at about the 10 minute mark. Very speedy.
The cafe itself looks to be a residential house that has been converted. This gives it a somewhat awkward feel, but they've demolished the right walls and opened it out inside so it all works ok.
Given the price of property in these suburbs their decision to gut (what I assume is a property they own) and convert it into a business is particularly impressive.
There is also small garden outside to eat your breakfast in the morning sun, opposite the primary school. Not too many lycra warriors taking over the joint with their bikes. Water for dogs. The usual
It's worth noting as well the inside has some great artworks which in my view do make a real difference and brighten up the place. Any abstract art that can distract me from the metal grates on the windows is serving a valuable purpose, in my book.
Cannot recommend this place enough - it really is excellent. I wonder what will happen in a year or two after it becomes busier, but for right now it's one of the best places to eat in Perth that I have visited.
My only criticism is that, given how many roaming service people they have, it might be nice if we could order our meals at the table rather than as it is now; having us order at the counter. This is for two reasons: 1) I'm a lazy person generally and on Sunday mornings my laziness is infinite and 2) because Gooseberries is a converted home, there isn't much space for people to queue up and so when it gets busy it can become awkward with too many people milling about the entrance wanting to order.
Great prices, great food, great atmosphere. Add it to your list and you won't be disappointed. I've been three times (and I'm likely to visit again tomorrow!) and I'm yet to be let down.
9 colourful abstract artworks out of 10