Restaurant and food reviews from Perth, Australia

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Tom's Kitchen, Perth

Who is Tom?

Perth city is filled with cafes and restaurants offering a range of international and local cuisine, many targeted at office workers and visitors to the city alike. One area of concentration that has seen a few restaurants and pubs is Shafto Lane, where you can get food from cheap Japanese through to cafes and pub meals.

Cue Tom - or rather his kitchen. Tom’s Kitchen is situated in Shafto Lane and offers casual dining for breakfast through to dinner with what seems to be food with a European emphasis. With the inclusion of a small amount of indoor dining, and more bench-style outdoor covered al fresco dining, Tom’s Kitchen makes for café style dining complete with friendly and attentive wait staff.

Aiming to be above café food in terms of menu choices, the menu options include not too unusual but Tom-tweaked breakfast options followed by lunch and dinner food that seems to cross French, Italian, English, and to some extent modern Australian bounds including the likes of gnocchi, coq au vin, osso bucco, cassoulet, risotto, and ragout. To accompany the food, Tom’s Kitchen has all the usual coffees, and is also licensed and offers a local and international range of wines and beers.

Crispy skin pork and a chucky apple sauce with mash - $23

Crispy skin or pork crackling really does it for me. The taste, texture, and crunch in a good pork crackling can get me coming back.

Tom's Kitchen's crispy skin pork was aimed to give that crispy pork skin goodness. Did it deliver? Well, parts of the skin gave off a nice crunch and flavour, but other parts were tougher and barely crunchy from what I could tell.

The crispy skin formed the top layer of a deconstructed pork dish, where underneath the skin were pieces of seasoned pork that overall meant the pork dish wasn't so bad. Though not very groundbreaking, the chucky apple sauce's sweetness complimented the pork, whilst the mash was reasonably smooth and completed this dish.

Coq au Vin - $24

This dish was described as “Chicken, mushrooms and smokey bacon braised in red wine, with green beans.”

The chicken was cooked such that the chicken came off the bone reasonably easily. Being a coq au vin, there was also the distinct red wine taste mixed in with the sauce to give the chicken the nice coq au vin flavour. The chicken pieces were also wrapped and covered with bacon, thus adding additional flavour and interest to an otherwise simple dish.

Short macchiato, topped up

Tom's Kitchen uses Essenza beans. The coffee produced was mildly bitter but had no noticeable level of acidity or sourness which from my experience seems pretty normal for Essenza. I felt the taste of the beans and resulting coffee was within my preference enough to say this was a decent coffee.

In summary, Tom’s Kitchen tries to break away from the typical common café in the city by offering more fancy and classy dishes without being fine dining. The food isn’t bad for the market it is aimed for along with the prices, and I found the coffee to my liking to accompany some food.

Points to note: Tom’s Kitchen sits in between the typical café and fine dining in terms of food and prices on offer. It is fully licensed and has indoor and al fresco dining producing a casual and relaxing dining experience.

Go for: A nice but not too fancy meal in the city.

Tom's Kitchen
Shafto Lane
(08) 9321 0345
Trading Hours
Monday to Thursday: 6:30am to 9pm
Friday: 6:30am to late

Tom's Kitchen on Urbanspoon


Anonymous said...

beautiful photos! jb

Shaun said...

Had a work lunch at Tom's Kitchen. The food is prepared with some thought and class and I agree with your review, better than a cafe and in the same vein as fine dining but without the expensive price tag. I had one of the daily specials on offer - the rabbit linguine which was tasty but lacked a certain punch to take it to the next level. Maybe the lack of seasoning would have made all the difference.

UdyRegan said...

I could eat pork crackling as a snack man. I would love for someone to make me up a huge batch of the stuff and put in in a nice storage container for me to nibble on when I’m watching rugby or something with my mates.