MUST was a haven from the gruelling heat outside, the dim interior drawing us in like polar bears to an ice floe.
The bistro lunch menu had a similarly magnetic effect, $80 for two with a choice of two or three courses, and a glass of wine.
Generally speaking the Perth Voice’s weekly food review budget doesn’t stretch to a more upmarket dining experience, the owner’s rationale being you want to read about places you can afford on a regular basis. Pfft.
Well, this visit offered both. Sure, you’re hardly likely to pop in for this on your lunch hour every day but for an occasional working lunch with a client (or colleague) it’s ideal.
With a bit of clever juggling my guest and I opted to cover a range of dishes without exceeding the budget.
Water was poured from a silver jug and the waiter expertly flicked the linen napkins, placing them on our laps with a flourish: we were feeling decadent already.
Add a basket of crispy bread, and butter in a dish, and life was looking decidedly on the up given we’d spent half an hour fruitlessly cruising the hot streets of the Beaufort Street strip for somewhere else to eat.
Sharing an entree of asparagus tart with fig and ricotta salad, we both exclaimed over its perfect, flaky pastry and wonderfully fresh asparagus. The chunks of fig and fresh rocket were fantastic.
Washed down with a Spanish sparkling and an Italian dry white, we were thinking to ourselves “could life really get any better?”.
Then the mains arrived.
I’d opted for goats cheese souffle (entree size) which was an elegant sufficiency having mowed through bread and tart. The rich but delicate flavour was beautifully counterpointed by a tangy red capsicum coulis.
Across the table my companion tucked into her main of beef brisket, with smoked onion puree and caramelised mushrooms: “It’s so melt in the mouth you could eat it with a spoon,” she sighed.
Torn between three desserts on the menu we appealed to the ever-so-helpful waiter to adjudicate. And he was spot on. The poached pear fruit cake with caramel and vanilla ice cream rounded out what had been a gastronomic success.
A couple of excellent coffees ($4) were the cherry on the cake.
by JENNY D’ANGER
Must Wine Bar
519 Beaufort Street, Highgate
open 7 days 12 noon till late