AHH … The Wiggles.
Garish maniacs that obliterate parents first thing in the morning.
I’ve lost track of the times I’ve trudged into the living room at 6am — like Napoleon marching on Moscow — only to be forced back by a blizzard of skivvies.
Somehow I got roped into going to the Wiggles live show at Perth Arena, so to soften the blow I suggested we go for lunch at The Aviary beforehand.
The trendy CBD bar isn’t an obvious choice for a kids meal on a Saturday, but it was within walking distance of the arena for my three-year-old twins.
The Aviary staff were outstanding, and rearranged plush leather couches and tables in the lounge for my brood and a Scottish couple with a toddler and infant who’d decided to romp bomp a stomp along to the concert with us.
The lunch menu was compact and included finger food (starters, dumplings and bao), mains (roasted red duck, miso and cashew crusted lamb) and some desserts (baked spice chocolate pave, caramelised banana and white chocolate parfait).
There was also a limited “kids” menu: a $10 bamboo basket (panda biscuits and juice) with a choice of spring rolls, dumplings, egg fried rice or honey chicken.
My wife and I ordered some dumplings to share, while the Doubtfires went for the sizzling chicken ($26).
As we waited for our tucker the kids began to assail the leather couches, scurry under the tables, and generally disrupt the space-time continuum, but the staff kept smiling and plied us with crayons and sheets of manila.
It wasn’t long before we were tucking into our dumplings, huddled in bowls of deliciously warm broth.
“The prawn and green pepper dumplings ($15) are outstanding,” enthused my wife.
“The curry broth is crammed with flavour and the prawns juicy and plump.”
The dumpling casings were gossamer light and fell away with the ease of a harlot’s panties — absolutely outstanding.
A close second was the pork and ginger gyoza ($15) — the hot and sour broth whipping my taste buds into an orgasmic flush.
Coming in last was the beef and black bean dumplings ($16); I enjoyed the complex mushroom broth, but I found the beans saltier than Popeye’s thighs.
By this point the kids were beginning to convulse at the prospect of Henry the Octopus and the Doubtfires were tucking into their sizzling chicken.
“The portion sizes are great,” enthused Big Al. “The chicken is so tender and the baby vegetables add a nice, crunchy texture.
“The green mango and chilli is also great and gives the chicken a real kick.”
The kids enjoyed their bamboo baskets, devouring the beef and shitake dumplings with the finesse of a closing-time drunk, and wolfed down the complimentary rice (thank you staff).
Before we knew it, it was 1pm and time to hit the skivvy-clad obscenity that is The Wiggles.
The Aviary was palliative care; but my God it was exceptional.
by STEPHEN POLLOCK
1/140 William Street