From the deep-fried to the delicious, low-cost to special occasion, the Voice food reviews had a bit of everything this year.
Here’s a round-up of some notable eateries we visited (not necessarily the best or most sophisticated cuisine, but places that left an impression on this slightly over-weight, misanthropic foodie).
The Chook’s search for the best continental roll in Perth took a lip-smacking detour when we stumbled upon the best meatball sub at DELI’S CONTINENTAL in Inglewood.
With the bread flash baked to order, huge meatballs, a divine tomato sauce and a generous amount of salsa verde drizzled on top, it was sheer bliss.
Like something you’d expect from a top deli in New York.
The Voice always loves a hidden gem, so we really enjoyed our visit to LEELEE LUCKY’S in the leafy burbs of Mt Lawley.
A cute Asian cafe that did a roaring trade in banh mi and also offered a few hot meals like beef pho. It was a little kitsch and had a nice family-run air.
We enjoyed the heart-warming backstory too: the owner’s parents were some of the first Vietnamese boat people to arrive in Australia in 1977, after spending two years in a refugee camp in Malaysia.
On arrival her mother traded her wedding ring for a wok and spatula, and borrowed money for cooking oil, then opened a market stall using surplus food provided by the UN Refugee Agency.
In terms of character and places that are part of the cultural fabric of Perth, THE KOSHER PROVIDORE in Menora is hard to beat.
For years it’s been serving up freshly-made boiled bagels (regard as the best in WA) to Perth’s Jewish community and beyond.
A no-frills mini-mart with a butchers, groceries and frozen goods, it’s a ramshackled delight and the staff are all good value, including the “The Bagel King” himself, a youngish dude always up for a laugh on the store’s Facebook page.
If you’re after something affordable yet different, then LOLA’S DINER in East Vic Park is worth a visit.
Serving up traditional Filipino cuisine, you can get everything from garlic rice and grilled chicken to comfort food like beef patties with eggs and gravy.
Run by brothers Al and Ken Craigie, Lola’s diner is a nod to their Filipino heritage, and they originally started up the cafe with their mother Estrella.
One of my most enjoyable brunch/lunches was at FINLAY AND SONS in Inglewood.
A really strong menu that just didn’t rely on the old favourites like eggs benny and the big brekkie, with dishes like kedgeree, leek and parmesan fritters, and even some Brussels sprouts.
A casual cafe with top food, I can see why it’s remained popular with Inglewood denizens for some time.
Our search for the best continental roll in Perth, took us to CHARLIE’S FRESH FOOD MARKET in the hinterlands of Morley.
A huge deli/supermarket that started out life as a humble mom- and-pop store in 1967 on Walter Road, it now has a massive range of deli goods as well as everyday items, meaning you can do all your shopping in one go.
When we visited, their continental rolls were going down a storm with everyone from tradies to office workers coming in for their lunchtime fix.
Well worth making the trip north to have a gander.
If you’re heading into the CBD, then check out LONG CHIM in the basement of the Treasury Building on the corner of Barrack Sreet and St Georges Terrace.
They do top-notch Asian cuisine in a casual, fun setting and they have some great lunch offers during the week.
There’s also an outdoor area with parasols that looks like a great spot for a Sunday session.
Another hidden gem was the deli/cafe LA MORTAZZA in North Perth. Situated at the bottom of a modern apartment block, Italian techno was blaring as I walked in and the friendly staff were having a lively chat with a local in Italian.
The place had a nice buzz and plenty of cured meats, cheese and pastsa dishes.
The Voice enjoyed one of their tasty continental rolls and took home a superior meatball pasta for dinner.
By STEPHEN POLLOCK