Perth Food

So I went down to Spectra on Wednesday to pay my old workplace a visit.

Surprised to see that not much has changed since I resigned earlier this year. All the old faces are still there and everyone is still sitting at the same spot as they were 7 months ago. Even my old desk was intact, except maybe for the layer of dust covering it. Gary said they’ve been advertising my old position but haven’t yet found any suitable candidates.

I offered to clean up the mess I left help them out for a few days while I’m here, which is why I haven’t been updating this site as often.
My former manager David said to me, “We’ll take you back right away if you want.”
I felt a squish inside as I replied, “I can’t…”
Considering Kuching has so much cheap and delicious food, I didn’t realize I actually miss Perth food a lot, but I did.

I’m doing this as a tribute to my favourite eateries in Perth. They may not have all the glitz and glamour or be as fancy as the exclusive restaurants around town, but they damn sure are responsible for the extra kilos I’ve piled on.

The $3.50 Chicken Rice

Back when we first arrived in Perth with very little money on us, all the restaurants around town were charging at least $7 for a steamy pile of bullshit.

At the time, the $3.00 chicken rice shop at Karawara was God sent. Nowhere else can we have a taste of home without paying ridiculous Australian prices. 8 years later, they’re still around and their prices have only increased by 50 cents.

Don’t be fooled by the innocent-looking Singaporean couple running the shop. In the morning, they work their asses off serving hungry Curtin students. At night, they put on their best suits and gamble their fortune away in the Burswood Casino VIP room.
Thai Village Garden’s Squid Pepper Rice, Karawara

Just next to the chicken rice shop in Karawara is Thai Village Garden, another student favourite. Their $7.30 squid pepper rice is simply mouth-watering. Best served with their homemade spring roll sauce.
George’s Kebabs at the Curtin Uni Tavern

Officially awarded the best kebabs in Perth for many years running and more. They are so popular that every lunchtime, the lines would all the way to the outside of the Tav. You don’t get kebabs as fat and tasty as theirs back in Malaysia.
Utopia Bubble Tea, Northbridge

They started with one shop hidden away in Northbridge but rapidly expanded to 5 stores all over Perth. $3.50 for a bubble tea may be expensive but it’s worth it. Other bubble tea outlets that offer cheaper alternatives come and go, but Utopia is still growing strong. Try their Summerlove Milk Tea with Jelly – you don’t get them anywhere else.
Kimchee House, Northbridge

I used to go to this place so often, the lady boss still recognized me though I haven’t been back for 7 months. I reckon Seoul is overrated and Arirang is only good for their BBQ. For the best Korean food in Perth, it’s gotta be Kimchee House in Chinatown, Northbridge.

I like their $6.80 Korean pancake and $9.60 seafood tofu stew.
The Moon Café, Northbridge

Perth is dead after 9pm and there aren’t a lot of cafes around that opens till late night. I used to like Fast Eddy’s, until their food takes 20 minutes to arrive. I used to think Oriel’s in Subiaco was good, until one of their waiters got permanent PMS. Then I discovered the Moon.

The best thing about Moon Café isn’t the food, but the relaxing environment it offers to people who just wanna sit back and chill out with friends. Get in there Monday/Tuesday for $9.95 pizza /pasta with wine, or Thursday night for their live jazz band.
Chilli Mussels at Conca’s

If you ever wonder why the Italians in Perth are so rich, take a look at Conca’s.
Everything in there is old: The furniture is old, the computers are old, heck – even the people serving the food are old! Yet, these grandmothers have the audacity to charge $23 for a small bowl of chilli mussels that used to cost $17 a few years back.

By any means, every single item on their menu is WAY overpriced for a run-down shop like theirs, but for some reason people kept coming back for more. It could only mean that their food isn’t just good – it’s DAMN good.

Man, I got so hungry writing this entry. Now if you’ll excuse me I’m gonna eat a koala bear now.

104 Replies to “Perth Food”

  1. yum… nice food. and tat chicken rice looks good, and cheap! unlike melbourne, cheapest also $6. have u eaten kangaroo before? i’m thinking of tryin it.. 🙂 enjoy ur stay in perth!

  2. eh, Perth got lots of good-looking guys, right? especially in a university.
    is it common to find fastfood restaurants like KFC or Long John Silver’s there?

  3. Kenny!!!!!
    You make me miss Aust again…Melb to be exact
    for the food…
    Sigh… I even miss Boost Juice…
    I wanna go back to Melb too! 🙁
    P.S. That chilli mussels looks DAAMMNNNNN GOOD! *drool*

  4. yum… nice food. and tat chicken rice looks good, and cheap! unlike melbourne, cheapest also $6. have u eaten kangaroo before? i’m thinking of tryin it.. 🙂 enjoy ur stay in perth!
    Posted by: Alex at October 21, 2005 12:48 PM
    Alex: There used to be a Lat’s Restaurant (opened by Malaysians) in Melb city centre that sells chicken rice at AUD2.50!!!
    It was like god-sent as well, at that dirt-cheap price. Too bad, the shop closed around 2001/2002 🙂

  5. Alex: There used to be a Lat’s Restaurant (opened by Malaysians) in Melb city centre that sells chicken rice at AUD2.50!!!
    It was like god-sent as well, at that dirt-cheap price. Too bad, the shop closed around 2001/2002 🙂
    Posted by: Joanne at October 21, 2005 01:45 PM
    i think that they were making a huge loss…

  6. DUDE!!!
    Haha, I guess you were too busy to get yourself over to Fremantle.
    Also… the Dim Sum man… Joy Garden on Northbridge :D? Excellent stuff ^^… Better than anything you can get in Malaysia ~~

  7. I wonder why Chinatowns are always in Northbridge. Here is in Northbridge Road til NewBridge Road area too.. Wah lao. Sell Chicken rice for Au$3.50 can gamble like no need capital like that?

  8. *drool*…the photos looked so good that I started to ransack my office drawers for food, and all I got was a lousy packet of Cheezels…=)
    Hope you’re having a good time there, Kenny!

  9. I really miss bubble tea with pearls in Singapore. Whereas it used to be everywhere, now I don’t even see any around any more! *Sob*

  10. hi, u should go to this place named makan2, if i am not wrong at northbridge, run by malays. the teh tarek is fantastic. it’s open till late.

  11. Muahaha, that 3.50$ chicken rice shop is in Karawara’s Coles. Man, your picture brought my memories back to the time when…… Lolz. I loved the steam chicken rice there. So tasty! I live there for 3 months during my first visit to Perth.

  12. no no no .. u should try mikasa .. new boss ard the area .. bought their satay chicken rice at 4.50 juz now .. best ar ….
    and i hve to agree the concas chilli mussels with the garlic bread can change any1 views for seafood once more …
    As for kimchee house, well … i hve another place to go to … but tht one is more of korean bbq … haizzz .. after ur post of perth, kinda of realise i gonna miss tis place once i graduate frm curtin at this end of yr …
    The freedoom ….. sobzzz

  13. hello,
    can anyone tell me how to put a jukebox in a blog please? i’m coming up with a musicblog but merely gonna give up with heaps of trouble figuring “how” to include songs. i’m using a blogpsot at the moment! do provide some suggestions please. a pretty kewl blog u have, kenny! cheerz=)

  14. ARRGGHHH!!!!
    Was there for 2 years doing my bachelor’s at Curtin. I remember them all, the chicken rice aunty, the curtin tavern and the “to die for” eggplant kebabs. That was since 2000, and it still surprises me how much I remembered. I still miss shopping at Coles. Sigh.
    Enjoy your trip buddy.

  15. Great page! :O) All the food you show looks great, and that is a very interesting story about going back to an old job. Going back to any past location in which I had spent alot of time is a process mixed with memory and emotion. Very interesting.
    Bathroom Review

  16. lmao. you make me wonder, just how badly i am going to miss canberra when i do leave. i am working as much as i can to stay, but there’s only so much i can do since they raised the migration level to post grad.
    i am guessing, your company is not only waiting for the right qualifications, but also the “fitting” personality. however, 7 months sometimes isn’t all that long. great that you offered to help though.

  17. Man, I got so hungry writing this entry. Now if you’ll excuse me I’m gonna eat a koala bear now.
    for your info.. koalas aren’t bears. they’re marsupials.. tsk.. but this happens all the time. never fails to irk me tho’.
    nice blog anyways. *grins*

  18. “Perth is dead after 9pm and there aren’t a lot of cafes around that opens till late night.”
    That comment made me homesick for Sydney – where things are open 24 hours a day. Great cafe in the city called Alexanders which is open 24 hours day!
    ***Sigh*** I miss Sydney!

  19. I MISS PERTH!!! Used to stay at Erica Underwood. Loved the squid pepper rice and green curry chicken rice at Karawara! Man… I want to go back to Sparrows to eat ayam bali!

  20. umm a few things to add just for the heck of it:
    1.i think the 3.50 “auntie’s” Curtin Chicken Rice has opened a branch on Hampdon Road called University Cafe o smth
    2. The PMS waiter!!! U R NOT alone on that one bro! hes been treating some of us like crap too… its the big asian dude right? i think he is very picky with the people hes nice to. LESSON : get the waitresses (who are,most of them, pretty easy on the eyes) to serve u 🙂
    BTW wheres The Moon in NB??
    PS u forgot Gelares Waffles mmmmmmmmmmmmm…….. 😛

  21. Ohh…. i tried Conca’s when i was on holiday in Perth… After a nite out at Onyx, a group of us went to Conca’s…. and i must say the chilli muscles are just awesome!….i’m salivating already… damn….

  22. Hmmmm…if you ever think of coming by to Gelare Northbridge, come by this Saturday night after 7, I’m working there and I’ll give you some extra treats =D

  23. I used to work in Tav…..during my final year there. Saw your post of the tav, and it really brough back memories. Say Hi to Jim for me.
    U are damn rite about the line during lunchtime! and still missing my fish kebabs….

  24. how could u miss out Good Fortune’s roast duck?! that’s like the best asian restaurant in perth lor.
    u might wanna check out Hawker Cuisine which is located @ the old Chin Chin’s location. It’s superb. for malaysian cuisine, it’s as good as it gets in perth.

  25. hmm…Karawara!
    The chicken rice shop sells extra rice for just 50 cents…
    Plus the tavern’s chip rolls are teh good!
    Good good

  26. OMG!! OMG!! KENNY! this Perth pictures brought back a lot of memories!! i had tears in my eyes seeing them again!!!!!!!!! all of those places!!! *sigh*

  27. you made me miss perth so damn much more than i already did tat i may start to cry now
    aussie aussie aussie!
    oei oei oei!

  28. MUAHAHAHAHAhahahhaha… 😀 its okay.. i’ll eat for you guys.. 😉
    anyway.. the best fish and chips would be currently around walcott street near beaufort street. Then there’s duckstien in swan valley. Witches culdron @ subi.. oh and the subi market.. yum yum fruits.. 😀 its strawberry season now. THen @ freo there’s little creatures, nice beer. @ leaderville there’s betty’s burger (or something like that) best burger ever! mm.. blue cheese mushroom burger..
    what else.. oh near UWA @ broadway shopping center they serve the best chicken sandwich and soup durring winter. Then there’s Al padrino’s for thier pizza. Turksih kitchen @ albany highway next to macd.. 🙂
    Last of all Happy Meal! 😀
    so many to list.. too little brain cells to keep all of them

  29. Yeah theres a new Hawker’s Cuisine at Northbridge that sells sting ray and mee kolou taking over the old chin chin…
    Also Makan Makan is NOT situated at Northbridge but at Albany highway in Vic Park…
    Conca’s chilli mussels are nice but not value for money…for $23 a big bowl… tts just too ex…
    Indeed theres a student cafe in Hampden road near UWA tt sells $3.50 chicken rice… probably a branch of tt in Karawara…
    Dim Sum in Joy Garden is good… but theres one of a similar standard with a shorter queue called Dragon Gate or sumthing lidat just opposite from Northbridge Gelare…
    I dunno about you about i digged the cheap Jap food at sharfto lane near City called TAKA… @ $4.50 for small to $6 for a large Karrage Chicken with rice… even comes with miso soup for the large order and they even have free hot tea FREE FLOW if u dine there….
    Just had roast duck for lunch @ Good Fortune today…. still good but i think its too oily for my liking…. try the crispy skin chicken rice @ $6/plate…. HIGHLY recommended
    And i m so gonna miss Perth when i graduate at the sem of this semester….*SIGHZ*

  30. hey thanks for posting the Perth pics… I’m getting nostalgic… had some good times there..I wish I was back in Perth too.
    Have you been to Supa Valu ? the one near Vickery House with a primary school in front of it… If you could take pictures of it that’d be great. cos I used to live nearby and went there often…I miss that place -_-
    If you’re lucky you could probably catch the cute female cashier by the name of Sufi (I think she’s Indo-Chinese) on duty there.. . sigh those were the days 🙂

  31. Hey Lyn, u say u give mr sia here a special treat if he goes gelare northbridge on sat after 7pm. Den the other ppl how ? lol
    Anyway Kalos u graduating this semester too ? Den i reccomend you to go Hana’s korean bbq buffet .. the last time me and my frenz went, we had about close to 2 kgs of meat and beer .. gosh .. must try b4 going back … lol

  32. Hahah!! i’ll check out those places u’ve written that i haven’t been to before. u know the 3.50 chicken rice’s counterpart near UWA the ayam getting more and more kecik by the day?
    There used to be a wonderful italian place called Coppadonna in Cottlesloe…HAND MADE pastas!!! but the owners flew back to Italy for some reason…now its lousy Marco Polo…the brash Italian woman (big blonde hair red talon nails loud voice nosy character) who manages it now ruins the whole ambience…blearrgh…
    oh btw…food guides in Qantas mags recommend No 44 somewhere in the city. I reckon if u’ve got unlimited budget go explore there la!

  33. Man, I used to eat at the chicken rice store ALL THE TIME. I lived at Rotary Int, which is just opposite the place. Ah, memories! And the kebabs in the curtin uni tavern – man, i love their garlic sauce. memories!

  34. kenny!!!! you really made me hungry now!! u didn’t mention the oh-so famous apple strudel!!!! my friend bought it over to melb for me and…..*drool*

  35. u hit home with those pics kenny.
    was in perth/karawara for 3 yrs plus…
    $3.50 chicken rice, thai village garden..
    man.. was just like yesterday..
    oh yea and CONCAS!! ordered the supa spicy level mussels then.. everyone would witness toilet bowl fireworks later!! we would even challenge mates to skull the chilli sauce using the mussel shells… 😉
    oh yea, hungry jack’s is the best… not like asian styled mini burgers.. ;x
    miss the bloody place man..

  36. Hey Kenny!
    Hahah its awesome how’d you go to all those azn places, nothing beats them! “Summerlove Milk Tea with Jelly” – you’ve got great taste; my visits to Utopia has always been a “weekender-relaximo” for me 😀
    I hope you continue to enjoy your stay here at Perth, but you seem to be having a buzz anywayz…lol

  37. can I just say you’ve done a better job than the average joe. come to london, we’ll show u around mate. u can blog your way through the City and really show u the ‘not so normal’ stuff.

  38. can I just say you’ve done a better job than the average joe. come to london, we’ll show u around mate. u can blog your way through the City and really show u the really ‘not so normal’ stuff.

  39. Ya dude!!! your reminiscence of Perth made me think back to my perth days where i keep tellin my fiance i’ll take him there once there and now u writes abt it … *sniff* … ah, the food old days …

  40. Yes kenny i love that chicken rice place 2!! their BBQ chicken is hell ns, how ironic on the top left corner there is the word addictive since their food is very addictive!!!

  41. Aaarghghghgh!!! This post brings back all the memories! ;_;
    How come I’ve never seen you at Kimchee House?? I used to hang out there quite often too, although Arirang was a main haunt.

  42. Think you have a database of Perth lovers here through ur comments page, but what you have here are the essence of Perth foreign students’ life~ hahaha… I MISS PERTH so friking much and did not realize it till i saw this page. Man. Thanks.

  43. Oh shit… you made me miss Perth all over again 🙁
    I love the food, beer and atmosphere at Freo’s Little Creatures.

  44. wah ! too much to think about leh
    just thinking about it makes my mouth water !
    if i do visit perth !
    i’ll make sure to visit your page first so that i can test your recommendations !

  45. Hey Kenny, were u at Japan House too? Golly, i miss my student social life days… i don’t miss the studying, but the social life was pretty good. Last time i was in Perth, i visited Curtin and it sure has lots of new buildings and stuff..Some day i gotta come back and take a longer time to browse through Freo! I miss chilli mussels!!!

  46. the 3.50 chicken rice place is now called CHILLIZ… they’re renovating the whole karawara shopping corner now, there’s gonna be a new gloria jeans n nandos too.

  47. Makan2 Cafe Vic Park is THE place now. A good blend of asean food, cant beat their teh tarik… taste just like kedai MAMAK teh tarik!!! Staff are mostly students. Value for money, busy nites got to wait a bit lah… but a real awesome place to chill out with mates.

  48. Makan Makan is the place to go if you like your food quite salty. Not value for money unless you want a heart attack. :p
    The Chicken Rice shop you mentioned in Karawara isn’t there any more I hear. I heard because of the shopping centre’s renovation/expansion, everyone had to bid to have their shop there. They lost. Now they only have Student Cafe which is on Hampden Road in Nedlands. Not sure if they are doing well though.

  49. Sorry for the double post – but I also forgot to mention that I’ve actually seen that job ad for Spectra Engineering before. I remembered it because I’ve seen it advertised a number of times in the paper.

  50. Yup…went there few times the last few weeks. Stil there. The building is called’ Waterford Place/Plaza’ now. The shop is called ‘CHILLIZ’ now. Items ranges from $3.80 to $4.20. Stil value for money! Cheers!

  51. i have been to chilliz for many million times. They have bbq chicken, steam chicken, honey chicken, hot and spicy chicken and ….. With the chilli and soy sauce,wau yummy…. . without doubt, the food there are so yummy and cheap.
    i heard that, they have changed owner and he is quite young. i think the one in hampden rd is owned by him also.

  52. Hehehe we asians are so typical sometimes! We all do pretty much the same things! =P Not that im saying thats bad or anything LOL since i go to most of those places too =P
    🙂 haha i agree Northbridge Gelares!!!! Nothing beats half price waffles on tuesday and then Utopia after =D
    Dim Sum @ Welcome Inn Tea House =))

  53. Chilliz is cheap i’ll give it that…but i wudnt say the food is that good. Its edible…but not that good

  54. I was already missing Perth but u made me miss it more. Definitely highlighted all tt we ex-perth students are craving for here in SG! kimchihouse, concas, the ubiquitous summer love tea… sigh. Good job on the blog anywayz =)

  55. ChilliZ is the greatest..
    I am thinking of starting my own shop in the Leeming region.
    if you think this is a good idea please let me know on
    I don’t want to start the business if I will not have a large market.
    Also the price will have to be $4.20 as it is prime real estate.
    Thank You

  56. just went to the moon cafe for some pizza n nachos..
    and must say the ambience n food is awesom possum…
    waitress was a cow though..kept on giving us the evil eye…
    moon cafe is definitely gonna be one of my frequent haunts for sure!

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