Living at opposite ends of Australia, it’s not often that my sister and I get to have a meal together so during my brief visit to Perth, she suggests a bite of lunch down in the city.
We get to Brookfield Place at St Georges Terrace in the heart of Perth CBD around noon and this huge commercial precinct is beginning to buzz with the vibe of a Friday lunch time crowd.
After wandering around the complex and peering into a few menus, we settle for a table at Basilica, a casual bistro with al fresco dining too.
The breakfast menu (6am – 11am) looks good with its selection of pastries, fruit bowl, eggs Benedict, Spanish omelette and salmon Benedict.
A bit too late for brekky, the Ploughman’s Board (served for breakfast and lunch) sounds very enticing with slice ham off the bone, soft boiled eggs, fresh avocado, fresh tomato, ricotta, feta, organic olive oil and butter served with fresh bread.
Organic EVOO is complimentary at each table to complement its selection of nicoise, Greek and Ceasar salads.
A quick wander up to the sandwich counter and we gaze upon with a selection of whole sourdough sandwiches, panini, fresh salads, pastries and cakes.
The food looks enticing and I like the selections on the menu too – classic salads, grilled burgers, panini, steaks and chicken parmi, chargrilled quail, pasta and risotto.
A toasted Reuben sourdough sandwich arrives on a wooden board with a serve of Balisica’s house salad.
This Reuben looks really enticing with chunky strands of savoury silverside corn beef, melting Swiss cheese, coleslaw and pickles sandwiched with fresh crispy toasted sourdough.
It is quite a generous serve for a sandwich and so it should be at $18 but perhaps this is mining boom town prices in Perth which appear even more expensive than Sydney.
Nevertheless, this chunky sandwich is tasty and I would recommend it to any Reuben lover. Although I’m not a big fan of sauerkraut, I like it in a Reuben but coleslaw seems to be the order of the day here.
A salt and pepper squid neither looks nor tastes anything like the version at Chinese restaurants or pubs serving bar food.
Instead, it arrives as whole baby squids pan-seared with paprika on a bed of salad leaves in herb aioli dressing.
The bite-size squid is nicely cooked as it is firm yet succulent. After the first couple of bites, I have forgotten the notion of it being a salt and pepper style.
This can be a truly impressive dish during a weekend barbeque because I love the look of bold grill marks against the white squid. The paprika seasoning rub needs to be on the mark and if this is done right, I reckon it’s a winner.
Portions are generous and we are sufficiently full with these two dishes without even a main course.
I would be keen to check out their breakfast if I am ever around the city early in the morning.
So dear readers, are you a fan of the famed Reuben sandwich?
101 / 125 St Georges Terrace
Perth, Western Australia
Tel: +61 8 9322 5756
Opening hours: Monday – Friday 6am – 5pm. Closed on Saturday and Sunday.