Perth is a small city compared to many - and famously the world’s most isolated - but it has vibrant business and cultural districts filled with cafes, restaurants, bars and markets. The city is full of bespoke restaurant offerings and a rapidly expanding small-bar culture, with creative and delicious world-class food to match.
A heavily multicultural city, most cuisines are represented, with Asian influences having a big role to play. As you’ll read below, however, there’s everything from fast food to fine dining to feast on as you visit this fantastic city.
Chef David Thompson is a master of Modern Thai cuisine, and Perth became the envy of Australia when he announced the opening of his first Australian restaurant in 14 years in 2015. Long Chim is a restaurant for lovers of bold flavours, and if you’re a chilli fan the Chiang Mai Larp of chicken is one of the hottest dishes in town. The cocktail menu is one of Perth’s best, with Thai-inspired creations sitting alongside more traditional offerings. Dishes from legendary American Thai restaurant Pok Pok have recently joined the bar menu.
Bookings for dinner are essential, but a range of quick-dining options are available at lunchtime.
Many Western Australians treat Bali, in Indonesia, as their second home, often holidaying there more than once a year. One of the most popular Bali beach restaurants is Ku De Ta, and earlier its 850-seat sister restaurant opened on the banks of Perth’s Swan River.
But don’t expect to find Indonesian food - it’s very much Modern Australian. Made up of three different dining rooms there's something for everyone, from breakfast and casual dining to a seafood & charcuterie bar, and Ku Dining for special occasions. With a focus on local ingredients, you’ll find some of the best food in Perth and a view to match. Breakfast is also excellent value.
The Perth Cultural Centre is a pedestrian precinct linking Northbridge with the CBD and is used for food & drink festivals as well as being home to Perth’s Art Gallery. Right in the middle of this area is Livingstone’s Urban Jungle, a funky kiosk serving decadent bagels, sweet treats and some of the city’s best coffee. The menu changes regularly to keep customers on their toes, and it’s popular for breakfast and lunch.
Manjimup in Western Australia’s south-west is the largest producer of black truffles in the southern hemisphere, and Livingstone’s is home to a decadent truffle toasted sandwich which appears for a short time every August.
Perth is well known for its coffee and cafe culture, and new venues are popping up all the time. If you’re in need of a city brew, pop into La Veen, located in a heritage-listed building just a short stroll from the CBD. Serving Perth favourite Five Senses from a huge custom Synesso espresso machine, the coffee is always reliable.
But this is not just about coffee, and La Veen make this list by serving what one of the best breakfasts in Perth city. Open for breakfast and lunch Monday to Saturday, try their take on shakshuka, a spicy tomato-based baked egg dish. If you feel like something sweet, their cronuts are outstanding.
Widely regarded as the top restaurant in Western Australia, Wildflower is Australian fine dining at its best. The location gives some idea of how good it is: it’s on the rooftop of the new COMO The Treasury hotel which was recently voted the second-best hotel in the world.
A meal at Wildflower is a degustation journey of farmer-and-forager-driven dishes revolving around the indigenous six seasons. Making use of only the finest Western Australian ingredients, this is truly a destination for a special occasion.
Go on, spoil yourself - you're on holiday, after all!
You might not expect Perth to be a big fried-chicken town, but the strong influence of Asian cuisine on this region has brought Korean fried chicken to the attention of the masses. Meat Candy has jumped onto the trend specialising in fried chicken. This quirky, old-school restaurant on the edge of the city is currently one of the hottest places in town.
If for some reason you’re not into fried chicken, the burgers and smoked meats are also pretty tempting. The extensive drinks menu includes a range of house-made sodas, which you can drink with or without alcohol, so they cater for all tastes and needs.
Located on the edge of Northbridge is Chicho Gelato, a small family-run gelataria that’s one of Perth’s best dessert spots. A veteran of Perth hawker’s markets, Chicho opened their first permanent store in early 2016 and they haven’t looked back. Their gelato contains only the best natural ingredients and tastes amazing.
The flavours are quirky and change regularly, with special varieties produced for events and in collaboration with other Perth chefs and restaurants. Their brioche ice-cream sandwich is fantastic - if you can get your hands on one before they sell out.
Oh, and there’s a chocolate fountain in the shop - enough said.
Anyone here who doesn't love cheese? Thought not. Located in a heritage building (and next to the Guylian chocolate café) right in the middle of Perth’s CBD is Fromage Artisans, Perth’s first licensed fromagerie. At the heart of the store is the strictly temperature controlled fridge where cheeses from around the world are matured to perfection. Visitors are invited to sit at the bar and indulge in rounds of cheese and their favourite tipple. There’s even a toasted sandwich containing 10 cheeses!
Head cheesemonger Jess Arnott will be a familiar face to fans of MasterChef Australia as she was a finalist in 2015.
If you find yourself peckish in the centre of Perth’s Cultural Centre then seek out the bright pink shipping container. This curious spot is home to the simply named and oh so popular Pretzel. This place does one thing and they do it very well. Their fresh, gigantic pretzels are made by hand and decorated to order, with sweet and savoury combinations such as Nutella, salted caramel, pepperoni and jalapeno.
These doughy delights are designed to be eaten on the run but there are a few tables nearby if you fancy a seat while you eat.