CLAISEBROOK COVE was in full bloom when I went there for lunch on Tuesday.
Spring had arrived prematurely and the beau monde flocked to the waterside cafes like flamingos on heat.
There was a European air to the Cove and it reminded me of holidays in the Mediterranean, where tourists leisurely promenade at night.
Unfortunately, I had misjudged the attire and was wearing some carbon-dated jeans and a green hoodie that had seen better days.
When I arrived at The Partisan, people were looking at me as if I had won a competition or received a voucher from a wealthy relation in East Perth.
I buried my head in the brunch menu, which had a delightful range of all-day breakfast dishes, and a smaller range of burgers, pasta, seafood, share plates and specials.
It was an extensive menu but not unwieldy, and The Partisan should be commended for a great range of dishes with everything from zucchini fritters to roasted chat potatoes.
I even spotted an “Immune Salad” on there – maybe one for the anti-vaxxers who could wash it down with a cup of ‘Flat Earth’ coffee.
The Partisan was pumping with the large waterside alfresco nearly full, but the service was still prompt and vey friendly, and there was additional seating inside.
The decor was French provincial with ornate chandeliers and some plush furnishings here and there, but it wasn’t over the top and the tables and chairs were fairly minimalist.
It wasn’t long before I was tucking into my sautéed mushrooms with poached eggs and smoked salmon ($18.50).
Great presentation and great value for money with a generous wad of high quality salmon and a liberal amount of delicious mushrooms, which were velvety and packed with flavour.
Underpinning the dish was some cornmeal bread, broccolini and grilled corn.
The broccolini provided some nice texture to the eggs, which were perfectly poached and oozed golden yolk over the salty cured salmon.
I’m not a fan of hollandaise sauce – I find it too sickly – but this incarnation was perfect and had a strong lemon tang and a slight hint of mustard, with the butter kept in check.
Despite all the strong flavours in this dish it came together nicely and didn’t overwhelm your palate, with the core ingredient – the mushrooms – being allowed to shine.
It went perfectly with my Green fresh juice ($7.50) a vitamin-boosting mix of apple, celery, cucumber, spinach, lemon and ginger.
It was presented in a stylish glass with a wedge of lemon, and had a large head of green foam that looked like The Incredible Hulk in a bubble bath. Very tasty and not too heavy on the ginger.
I washed it all down with a takeaway cappuccino ($4.80) which was nice and hot and came with a sugary Italian biscuit.
Throughout the meal the service was very friendly and polite, despite the busyness, and I had a nice chat with the lady behind the till. I couldn’t fault my meal at The Partisan and I’ll be back to sample their dinner menu and extensive range of alcoholic drinks.
I might even buy a new hoodie for the occasion and try their Immune Salad.
By STEPHEN POLLOCK
22/60 Royal Street, Perth