Taste of Perth festival 2nd – 4th May

IMG_1309Every Tom Dick and Harriett has been raving about how Perth has arrived, not just as a foodie city, but as a city in general. Adding to this, Perth is now been included in the international “Taste of” festival calendar. There are many Taste festivals around the world and now it’s Perth’s turn. You can find the food festival at Langley Park. The festival opened today (2nd of May) and runs till the 4th. Two dining sessions run on Friday and Saturday, for lunch and dinner service, with just a lunch session on Sunday.

IMG_1368Taste of Perth is exactly that. It gives you a taster of what 10 of the city’s best restaurants have to offer. Each of the pop up restaurants has a menu of 4 dishes, which includes an “Icon dish”. There’s lots of wine, beer, spirits and cider tastings as well as many boutique produce companies showcasing their goods. If you’re after something a little interactive there’s also cocktail making classes, cooking classes and cooking demos – I really enjoyed watching River Cottage Australia’s Paul West.

IMG_1322Unlike other “food and wine” festivals that have gone before it, Taste really has a focus on food. Food is the star of the show and also the people involved with creating it. Perth’s high profile chefs; Kiren Mainwaring of Co Op, Joel Valvasori of Lalla Rookh, Sam Ward of El Publico, Scott Bridger of Bib & Tucker (and many more) are all rattling the pans at the festival and can be seen behind the scenes cooking up culinary treats. If you’re a regular at any of these restaurants you’ll also recognise many of the front of house staff taking orders. It really feels like the restaurants have moved location for a few days and adds to an authentic experience.

IMG_1318Cash is not used here – the festival’s currency is Crowns. These are purchased and put onto a card. It’s a very quick and easy process. $1 = crown.IMG_1327

We had a few dishes from our favourite restaurants and it was also a great opportunity to try some restaurants that we really want to go to in the future like Co Op, Lalla Rookh and No 4 Blake Street.

IMG_1335Print Hall – Jerry Fraser is a legend in Perth’s Hospitality Industry and he fittingly has the icon dish at the Print Hall pop up. Six of Australia’s finest oysters, lemon galangal mignonette can be enjoyed for 18 CROWNS

El Publico – There is also a pop up tequila bar here. We had a tasty Lamb Taco (pulled lamb, pumpkin seed sauce, pickles) 8 CROWNS

Co Op – This East Perth restaurant has been on my wish list for far too long and I really loved having a sneek peek of it’s menu. The Cheddar Perogies (Caramelised onion and cheddar dumplings) were scrumptious 8 CROWNSIMG_1314

ICON DISH Smoked & Glazed Pork; organic pork with apple, basil and crackle 20 CROWNSIMG_1313

Lalla Rookh –  Nonna’s Meatballs were bloody fantastic and ever so tasty (braised pork meatballs, soft polenta, parmigiano) 8 CROWNSIMG_1332

Bib & Tucker – Eamon Sullivan was taking orders and we could see (and smell!) the pig on the Rotisserie. So we just had to have the Suckling Pig Slider (brioche bun, pickled fennel salad)  CROWNSIMG_1348

No4 Blake Street – I’ve heard about the amazing signature dessert  at No4 and was so pleased to see it was an ICON DISH Chocolate Garden (edible soil, macadamia rocks, salted caramel, peanut dacquoise). It was the dish of the day for both chef and I 16 CROWNSIMG_1367

There was lots we didn’t get chance to eat too. The giant macaroons at Bistro Guillaume looked fantastic and I would have liked to have checked out the international iconic dish Black Miso Cod at Nobu.IMG_1352

Crowns are not refundable, so make sure you use them all before you leave. We had a bit of a dilemma where we had 14 crowns left, but needed 16 crowns to get the Chocolate Garden. Of course you can only add crowns to the card in denominations of 10, which was a bit annoying. Chef and I were lucky enough to have free entry to Taste of Perth, so it wasn’t a super expensive day out for us, but we could see how it could be.

IMG_1344We really enjoyed the festival and think it’s a fantastic addition and fitting conclusion to Perth City’s Eat Drink Perth festival. I’m already looking forward to the next one where hopefully it will grow to be an even bigger event.

For more info and prices check out http://www.tasteofperth.com.au/ or the wonderful restaurants too;

No4 Blake St
No4 Blake Street on Urbanspoon

El Publico
el PÚBLICO on Urbanspoon

Print Hall
Print Hall Bar and Dining Room on Urbanspoon

Co Op Dining
Co-Op Dining on Urbanspoon

Lalla Rookh
Lalla Rookh Bar & Eating House on Urbanspoon

Bib & Tucker
Bib & Tucker on Urbanspoon

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