A lovely lady, E, who I know had recently returned for a two year adventure in Europe with her man in tow. From all accounts they had an incredible time and I am envious of all the fantastic places they have been and some of the incredible places they got to eat at (of most note being The Fat Duck!). A week after she’d rocked back into town, we managed to align our calendars and find a time to head out for dinner to catch up on all she’d been up. I couldn’t wait.
We had perused the new addition Entertainment Book for someone in the vicinity of her place in Booragoon. There were a few options available close by and we’d decided we would give Bridge Café a go, given the sample menu in the book looked interesting, sort of fusion Asian with a few countries represented on the menu.
It was a fairly wintery night, but once we were inside the restaurant, it was pleasantly warm. Despite not having a booking (and probably lucky that it was a Thursday night) we were quickly seated. The waiter gave us a really thorough explanation of the night’s specials and we were sold on the fried spring rolls he outlined. A tasty mix of prawn and pork and vermicelli noodles, as well as a bunch of vegetables. There were two in the serve (which worked perfectly for us!) and it also came with an interesting salad. I really enjoyed this. The spring rolls were a generous size and the salad on the side was a nice refreshing contrast to the deep fried wonders.
We also shared some of the pork belly for starters. Crispy 5 spice pork belly, scallop panko with caramel, apple and coriandar salad ($18.50). It came in one large piece so it was slightly tricky business carefully cutting it in two. We got there though. It also came served with crumbed scallops. Don’t think I’ve ever had a scallop crumbed, wasn’t my favourite way to eat them. I didn’t mind the pork belly but it didn’t impress me as much as the spring rolls did.
By this stage I was wondering whether we’d actually needed mains because I think with one more entrée between us I would have been sorted. But enter my giant Massaman curry of braised wagyu beef shin with pumpkin, green beans and bamboo shoots, served with Jasmine rice ($33). I’d never had a massamen curry before, but earlier in this season of Masterchef there had been a challenge where they had to add ingredients to improve a massaman curry. So I was swayed by the memory and keen to give it a go. It was a big serve – full of beef and chunky vegetables. I didn’t mind the flavour, was fairly mild as curries go. It also came with a serve of steamed rice, but I didn’t eat too much of that, was more keen to try and put a respectable dent in the curry. I’m not sure I actually succeeded.
E was similarly challenged and while from all accounts her salmon was good, we both just over extended ourselves with entrees. A lesson for future visits we figured and a note for others. Two courses at this place and you wont be going hungry. Or needing dessert and that’s a huge call from me because I rarely pass up an opportunity to end a meal on a sweet note.
In all I thought it was a good night out at Bridge Café. Not fine dining per se, but not far from it. I thought it worked well for a mid-week catch up. Can’t fault the service, which is always key to a positive dining experience (especially in Perth, where it seems to get whinged about more often than not). And hey have to be happy with walking away feeling like you’ve had a good feed, which is definitely what happened on this visit.