East Asian charm

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CHARM, Perth

by JENNY D’ANGER:

Two blokes at the next table of this Murray Street, Perth eatery were lamenting over their teenage/early-20s kids.

Messy, lazy, disrespectful, but happy for mum and dad to give them a handout. And how embarrassing when his oldest daughter turned up for a family restaurant meal in Banana in Pyjamas pjs, one groaned.

“Poor old Alan’s daughter hasn’t spoken to him in over a year,” they consoled themselves, happy someone else’s kid was worse than theirs.

Not for the first time I found myself thinking not having kids has its compensations.

Including the luxury of enjoying a spur-of-the-moment, guilt-free lunch at Korean/Japanese restaurant Charm.

I had been heading elsewhere when a sign proclaiming “handmade” noodles caught my noodle-loving eye, causing me to do a sharp u-turn.

There’s an amazing array of noodle dishes on the menu, with either egg or the thicker udon noodles.

Some are traditional pork dishes, while others have beef, chicken or seafood, and with some you nominate what you want.

I opted for the seafood version of the stir-fried egg noodle ($12), with a side order of vegetarian samosas ($4.50).

Well, it was supposed to be an entree but both dishes arrived, very promptly, at the same time, as often happens in Asian restaurants.

I wasn’t complaining; the small parcels were piping hot and crisp and the mildly curried potato filling delicious.

The seafood for the noodles was slightly char-grilled giving the whole dish a fantastic smoky-barbecue zing.

The fresh, soft noodles soaked up the sauce, which was redolent of Asian spices—and a lot of garlic.

Charm’s decor is modern-minimalist and sombre in colour.

And while the waiter was efficient, she lacked a bit of oomph, failing to ask if I wanted anything to drink before disappearing back to the safety of her counter.

But for a delicious lunch at a ridiculously low price you’ll be charmed by Charm.

Charm
369 Hay Street, Perth
BYO
open Mon–Sat 11am–3pm and 5–9pm.

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