Restaurant and food reviews from Perth, Australia

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

West End Deli, West Perth

West End Deli reviews; West End Deli West Perth reviews and blogs
Crispy bacon and runny-yolk eggs, fluffy pancakes with berries and thickly sweet maple syrup, juicy sausages and crunchy golden hash browns...  Breakfast can bring so much joy to start the day.  But what about something a little different, perhaps a little gourmet for breakfast?  Pork belly with calvados apples?  Brioche with creamed spinach and slow cooked egg dressed with tobiko dressing?  What about smoked quail with foie gras terrine?

Taking an approach that blends gourmet dishes with staple breakfast offerings in a brunch menu is one thing that sets West End Deli from many other brunch cafes.  And head chef Justin Peters has a good CV having worked in Melbourne restaurants as well as previously being head chef of some Perth restaurants (Duende, Il Lido, and Verve) that gives further credibility to the dishes created.

West End Deli is situated in West Perth (the part that is close to Leederville) at a renovated retail site with a long history.  The historical feel is enhanced by small warm and fuzzy touches (such as old mechanical tills and scales, and post-federation electrical details) set amongst the modern warehouse-industrial feel complete with an open kitchen.  The result gives West End Deli character in what looks like a modern café/deli that oddly yet successfully integrates new and old.

The brunch menu is quite diverse for a café/deli and includes your staple eggs on toast (or try baguette for a change) and a wholemeal version of pancakes that is meant to come with “streaky bacon”, through to main course size meals including a steak sandwich, pork belly, spaghettini, salads and pies.  Given the not-so-large size of the cafe, it seems like quite a decent varied selection to cater for a mixed crowd, with even some (light) options for vegetarians.

Pork belly, pearl barley, calvados apples and crackle - $26

The pork belly was melt-in-your-mouth tender, like it had been slow cooked such that when I cut into the pork the meat tore at the grain effortlessly.  Crackle-wise, there was only a very light crackle (which was ok considering the pork was so tender) and a nice subtle sweet flavour that made it taste good on its own.

Add the pearl barley with a nice mildly sweet jus this dish had just the right amount of sweetness to complement the pork without over or under doing it.  Then there were the diced bits of calvados (brandy) apples – these were like sweet apple jellies that I enjoyed so much that I could have eaten them by themselves.

Though all up the pork serving wasn't huge, and the meat portion was quite small when you consider the amount of fat in pork belly, the overall flavours of the tender pork mixed in with the various sweet elements made this a pretty good pork belly dish.

Smoked ocean trout, brioche, creamed spinach, slow cooked egg and tobiko dressing - $24

This dish was like an ordinary breakfast dish gone gourmet and it tasted as good as it sounded on the menu.  However, again the dish alone didn’t seem like a large breakfast or lunch especially for someone who is used to "big breakfasts".

The brioche had a crust that had a light crunch, a light buttery and crumbly centre and overall a nice base to start the dish as opposed to commonly used bread.  The brioche was topped with a thin layer of creamed spinach, and a slow cooked egg that was delicate and almost “gooey” compared to a poached egg.  The lighter texture and flavour associated with the slow cooked egg made it great with all the other elements on the plate (rather than say bacon with toast).

On the other side of the plate was the smoked ocean trout (or house smoked salmon in some guises) with what seemed like cream cheese.  The tobiko (or flying fish roe) and black sesame dressing around the plate completed the dish and overall I felt this was a delicious gourmet style breakfast.

Steak and mushroom pie with side salad - $6 (pie) plus $3 (salad)

This pies were located in the fridge border the kitchen and the main dining area.  The choices on offer at the time were a steak and mushroom pie and a pork pie.  The steak and mushroom pie was made with a nice flaky pastry that was golden and buttery.  The pastry flakes on top had a nice flaky crunch to them.

Inside the pie were chunks of steak and mushrooms (real chunks as opposed to minced who-knows-what), in a well-proportioned stock-gravy.  The pie tasted wholesome and thankfully seasoned well (i.e. in moderation and not salty).  A sweet chilli sauce was provided as a condiment.

The optional salad was a fresh assortment of salad leaves dressed with a sweet dressing.

You can also buy the pies as take-away (or maybe even a baguette for $4.50 or some cake?).  I’m not a huge fan of pies, but I might have to get one of those baguettes next time.

Black bean cassoulet, pork, chorizo, and sour cream - $8

This cassoulet of what seemed like a generous amount of black beans (i.e. it was a sharing sized amount for someone who isn’t too keen on beans like me) was made with the addition of small pieces of pork and chorizo, and topped with sour cream.

The beans were cooked till they soft enough so they were nearly effortless to chew whilst still being firm, and the combined dish was well seasoned and seemed a tad on the creamy side when mixed through.

Lemon tart - $6

The “co-op inspired” lemon tart started off with a thin shortcrust pastry.  It was filled with a rich, smooth and tangy lemon filling that was a blend between sweetness and lemon tang, but definitely more on the strong lemon tang side.  If you like lemon tarts, this one says simple yet flavour-bursting lemon tart.

Lemon, thyme, pine nut torte - $6.50

This torte was a heavy, buttery, and crumbly torte.  The flavour from each of the elements in the name were subtle – the lemon being very mild, the thyme sparingly sprinkled on top, and the pine nut also taking a light flavour addition to this torte.

Whilst the cake didn’t seem to give big flavour or sweet kicks in my mouth, it would be suited to those after a milder tea-type cake or subtler than a lemon tart or chocolate velvet or beetroot and chocolate cake.  I guess I have a sweet tooth.

Cappuccino - $3.80

The cappuccino was pretty good.  The milky and mild-strength coffee was made with a bitter blend of beans (Vittoria I believe) that in the cappuccino made a decent cappuccino.

We liked: A good diverse range of food on the menu considering the size of the establishment; a gourmet approach to the food, offering restaurant style dishes with enjoyable flavours and textures; the previous point most likely due to an experienced chef being in charge (for a welcome change).

We didn’t like: The concrete and hard surface surrounds, whilst looking good, reflects noise so when busy it can get noisy, and seated a couple of tables from a large speaker made it more difficult to chat at the table without many "sorry, say that again"'s; not so much a gripe, at least not yet, but I sure hope that this place is cool in summer – the “air conditioners” on the wall that I could see looked a little worse for wear.

Other things to note: The prices vary a bit - some dishes are on the high-side for breakfast prices but the dishes are restaurant grade which would explain it; there is a brunch menu, and a separate dinner menu; during the lunch service they ran out of a couple of dishes though pointed this out quickly; gets busy at peak times – you can only make bookings from 11:30am onwards; if you’re vegetarian, brunch options include pancakes, baguette, porridge, and at least one other “main course” style vegetarian dish.

West End Deli
95 Carr Street
West Perth WA 6005
(08) 9328 3605

Trading Hours
Monday to Wednesday - 7am to 3pm
Thursday to Saturday - 7am till late
Sundays - 7am to 3pm

West End Deli on Urbanspoon


Candy Palmer said...

The foooods they all look delicious! :) I would try the steak and mushroom pie and the cappuccino for sure.

electrical services perth said...

this food seems to be quite delicious
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filipino love said...

Anothers good restaurant that I love...
LOVE the always perfectly plated food... makes you not even want to eat it, it looks so pretty

Love the casual vibe of a local cafe, but without having to order and prepay at the front

Love the non-alcoholic drink concoctions they offer

Love the attentive wait staff even for a lunch/brunch service

filipino girls said...


Love the wide crowd it attracts

Love the interior decor and open kitchen

Love everything about it!!! My dear Filipinos must come to this place: West End Deli

filipinos said...

TO: Other cafes should check out West End Deli to see how a good cafe does a great breakfast. Interesting menu options for breakfast.

qndesign said...

nice dishes with reasonable prices. kitchen renovations Perth