I’VE been going for coffee and the odd breakfast at Caffissimo in Mt Lawley for nigh on a decade.
I never made a beeline for the cafe, but it always seemed to be on my convenience radar anytime I parked near The Elford bar (old Flying Scostman) for work.
So I decided to try lunch at Caffissimo and see if the food was as good as the coffee, smoothies and fresh juices.
The all-day menu was a small affair that specialised in brunch (eggs benny, croque monsieur, veggie breakfast) with a handful of pasta dishes and salads.
My subconscious must have kicked in as I ordered the $18 Thai Chicken Salad (it only occurred to me on the drive home that I had watched Rick Stein scoffing Thai street food on TV the previous night).
While I waited for my lunch, I enjoyed a lovely pressed green juice which had a conspicuous foamy head and a great balance of spinach and kale.
Sometimes they can over do the kale and it becomes a bitter slog, but this was right on the money.
Situated on the corner of Chelmsford Road and Beaufort Street, there is plenty to look at through the large bay windows of Caffissimo, and for the first time I noticed a lovely white Art Deco building – home to a jewellers – down a side street.
For a brief second I also thought I saw a West Coast Eagles fan trudging down the road with a “The end is Nigh” placard, but I must have PTSD after the derby shellacking, as it just turned out to be a man with dreadlocks crossing the street.
It wasn’t long before the plesant lady behind the counter was back with my Thai chicken salad.
She was super friendly, full of smiles and made sure I had a carafe of water with my meal. Great service.
There was certainly plenty of freshly cooked chicken piled high on the dish.
It tased as good as it looked – nice soft flesh with a slightly seared skin – and the rocket, red onion and tomato in the salad were all fresh and well prepared.
So far so good, the core of the dish was all tasty and fresh, but when it came to the x factor, it was lacking.
The sweet chilli sauce was a tad viscous and bland, and the salad needed something
like crushed nuts, birdseye chillies, tamarind, spring onion or a squeeze of lime to get the tastebuds zinging and conjure up images of authentic, spicy Thai cuisine.
It was still enjoyable, but tasted like regular chicken salad with chilli sauce drizzled over the top.
I thought the interior of Caffissimo looked slightly tired as well, so maybe the whole dining-in experience needs a bit of a rethink, but I appreciate cafe owners have been doing it very tough with covid and are probably lucky to be still trading.
A takeaway creamy cappuccino reminded me of the excellent coffees they make, so the meal ended on a reassuring high.
Caffissimo Mount Lawley
7/595 Beaufort Street, Mount Lawley
Open Tuesday to Sunday 0426 355 661