Mary Street Bakery Highgate
Paul Aron and Michael Forde have a modern-day Midas touch. Individually and together they’ve been involved in Greenhouse, Cantina, El Publico and Ace Pizza. At Mary Street Bakery they’ve created another winner, one that has woven itself into the social fabric of Beaufort Street (and later, at a second location in West Leederville).
It’s got all the hip boxes ticked for decor, ethos and salted-caramel doughnuts, but it’s the substance that counts. Staff on its game, coffee that makes the difference and a menu that’s nothing less than inventive.
There’s mezcal-cured salmon with jalapeño and lime toast; coconut rice with mint, shallots and tropical fruit; and fried-chicken pancakes with chili and maple. Mary’s is a neighbourhood joint if ever there was one, where you can eat in or grab your daily bread from the bakery section.
While rising star Courtney Gibb takes charge in the kitchen there’s an egalitarian streak to the menu. The Old English, a true take on a bacon sandwich, started life as a staff meal – an English chef bemoaning the Aussie bacon sanger introduced his colleagues to a proper British butty.
Tip-Top-style white bread is substituted for the cafe’s own semi-sour loaf. Add house-made HP, a runny fried egg, a generous 150 grams of thick-cut bacon and you’ve got the blueprint for one of this place’s most popular dishes.