Restaurant and food reviews from Perth, Australia

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Tuck Shop Cafe, Northbridge

Tomorrow morning, if you're not running in the fit and charitable city to surf, you might find yourself running to your favourite breakfast cafe for an indulgent breakfast with some awesome coffee or tea, or even a good ol' fry-up.  No doubt even with the thousands running in the city to surf, some of the popular breakfast cafes will still be bustling full steam ahead including the well patroned Tuck Shop Cafe situated in the otherwise not-so-well-known-for-breakfast-cafes suburb of Northbridge.

The Tuck Shop Cafe, often with lines on the weekend rivaling the well-known-in-Northridge Dim Sum restaurants, is very popular with the breakfast and lunch crowd and known for serving excellent coffee and great all-day food.  Once you get in you're greeted by some friendly service - polite and helpful.  Once you get a table you'll find yourself in a modern and inviting environment where the seating is quite cosy but comfortable.

Many people would know Tuck Shop Cafe for its pie selection, but on this lunch occasion we decided to go for the more satisfying (and more expensive) main courses.  The day's menu (which happens to be an all day menu) came with variety with the likes of organic toast with preserves ($6.50), free range eggs with organic sourdough toast ($11.50), BLT on organic sourdough with tomato relish and hand cut chips ($16.50), Moroccan meatballs with flatbread, tomato, hummus and za'atar fried egg ($17.50), and Ciabatta with Tasmanian smoked salmon, lemon ricotta, asparagus, and fennel salad ($18.50).  These all day brunch dishes were in addition to the pies ranging from vegetarian to chicken, lamb, and beef (bacon and cheddar, curry, or stilton) all for $12.50.

Warm slow cooked lamb and roast vegetable salad with goats curd, dukkah, poached egg - $18.50

The slow cooked lamb, a few chunks of which were laid towards the bottom of the dish, was tender with a great seasoned flavour running through it.  For lamb, the chunks were so tender they tore apart effortlessly with my knife and melted in the mouth.

The roast vegetable salad, including chunks of pumpkin, carrot and potato, was delicious with a great hearty roast flavour running through it mixed in with a slightly acidic flavour.  Added into the mix was a creamy and acidic goats curd, a runny centred poached egg, mint leaves and a lemon wedge.  I'm not normally into multiple acidic elements in a main, but this was executed well with the acidity keeping the meal light and balanced in flavour. I was quite satisfied with this meal.

Chorizo with paprika potatoes, peppers, spanish onions and crispy pork belly, fried egg - $18.50

The highlight of this dish for us (but only just) was the pork belly, the skin of which was crispy and crunchy but otherwise the pork was not really seasoned (including no noticeable salt piles on the skin).  The vegetables seemed of similar style and roast flavour as the lamb dish, only with emphasis on sweet roasted red peppers, tomatoes and potatoes.  Added together with the salty chorizo, this dish combined into another delicious brunch meal that was satisfying without being too heavy.

Finishing off the dish was a fried egg was fried sunny side up, with a lightly crispy base and runny yolk.

Cappuccino - $3.90

This was, in my opinion, a great cappuccino.  Using a Toby's Estate blend, the coffee was smooth and strong, the milk creamy and froth thick.  I wasn't too keen on the chocolate strip piled on top, mainly because it was of the type with mixed sugar and the coarseness of it all came through when it was concentrated together.

We liked: Great tasting cafe food including some unique dishes, some with hearty flavours; great coffee

We didn't like: The wait to get a table during peak times (it gets busy!).

Other things to note:  The menu is an all day breakfast/lunch/brunch menu.

The Tuck Shop Cafe
178 Newcastle Street
(08) 9227 1659

Trading Hours
Tuesday to Sunday - Breakfast and Lunch

The Tuck Shop Cafe on Urbanspoon

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