Perth Foodlogue 3: The Tuck Shop Cafe

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My Facebook news feed has been bombarded by Tuck Shop’s food pornography for a long time. All my Uni friends who remained in Perth have visited the much- talked-about breakfast/brunch café several times. Their pictures taunt me.

I shall not be taunted. I ordered told Mum and Mei Mei to take me there; they were glad to do so as they love the hearty fare at the Tuck Shop Cafe.  So is this place over-hyped? I say NOT!

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We went on a weekday; the queue was not long so we only waited 15 minutes. Once we entered, we were greeted by friendly staff, a buzzing atmosphere and charming, slightly haphazard old school décor (notice the plants hanging upside down?).

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Menu was a simple one pager, with the date printed on top with all items below AUD $20. Mei Mei was dismayed that the menu changed, she could not find what she had before. But for regulars, frequent changes in the menu are always welcomed. Even though the menu is just a page long, items listed were extensive, from traditional favorites (but no boring egg bennys) to unusual dishes . We took a long time to decide what we wanted because, everything sounded so good.

Mum had Smoked Cod, potato and leek baked with poached egg, cheddar toastie (AUD $18.50), served on a rustic board. She liked it. I didn’t, because of the fishy taste. I know some peeps appreciate fishy taste (like the ocean, they say), but I am adverse to it and even the slightest hint of it turns me off.

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Mei Mei’s Moroccan meatballs with flatbread, tomato, hummus and za’atar fried egg (AUD$18.50) On a cold winter day, the hotpot kept the food warm for ages. We took our time to savor the exciting flavors, thanks to the generous usage of spices. Kidney beans in the stew and the fresh zesty side salad gave our taste buds a break from the strong flavors, while the hummus added an earthy element to this fantastic dish. We also like that Tuck Shop was very flexible when Mei Mei wanted to change the fried egg to a poached one instead.

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I am a BLT addict, I ate BLTs twice a week during my Uni days (luckily no high blood pressure yet). Although other options in the menu sounded delicious, I decided to stick to comfort food I am familiar with- BLT with Hand Cut Chips and Aioli (AUD $ 16.50). Instead of the usual white toast with mayonnaise, toasted Sourdough with relish spread gave the common sandwich a touch of luxe. One complaint though, the toasted Sourdough was waaayyy too hard, which kind of spoilt my dining experience because my jaws were getting painful from all the chewing.

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I am willing to overlook the rock hard toasted Sourdough because the perfectly seasoned and charred bacon saved the day, or should I say, the dish.

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Hand cut chips had a warm and fuzzy home-made feel, but was a tad dry. Dip it into the aioli, and you won’t notice the dryness. Notice the potato skins at the end of the chips? I feel less guilty gobbling my high sodium and fat content meal because I am getting some fiber from the potato skins *fantastic logic to psycho myself*.

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Service was brisk but always polite; I like how the staff took time to check how our meal was going, even though they were terribly busy. Will definitely revisit when I am Perth!

The Tuck Shop Cafe
178 Newcastle Street
Perth WA 6000
7am-4pm daily, closed on Mondays

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