Say goodbye to The Brown Fox and hello to Mayfair Lane, a British-style gastropub sporting a new fit-out, old-school service and a sophisticated menu. Chris and Foni Pollitt, two of the pub’s owners, added impressive global experience to their CVs before returning home to open Mayfair Lane.
Chris’s working life began at the Windsor Hotel in South Perth before he spent 17 years working abroad. Melbourne-born Foni is a certified wine educator whose 15 years in London were spent working for names such as Gordon Ramsay and Marco Pierre White. In Perth, Odyssea Beach Cafe, Balthazar, Gordon Street Garage, Il Lido and Bread in Common are some of the venues she’s consulted to on wine.
Mayfair Lane is their first venture together as husband and wife. “I think people are going to come for me, but they’re going to stay for him," says Foni. "I know what my vision is, I know what I want for my menus and so on. But he can create the right atmosphere, to make people want to stay. I think we both understand what our strengths and weaknesses are.”
Shannon Wilson, the opening chef at The Terrace and a former resident on Sir Richard Branson’s private island, is in the kitchen. While pub classics, such as bangers and mash, and fish and chips, are present and accounted for, daily specials – for example a lamb assiette comprising rack, slow-cooked shoulder and shepherd’s pie – speak more to Wilson’s ambition.
There’s plenty of off-list action for the (well-heeled) wine buffs, and the substantial wine list covers plenty of ground.
“We have so many by-the-glass options,” says Foni. I’ve got $8 glasses, I’ve got $44 glasses, it’s up to the customer what they want to spend. What’s good is we’re not selling a lot of the one thing. Considering how big our wine list is, that means that I’ve ticked boxes for everybody.”
Although Mayfair Lane is barely two months old, the Pollitts are already thinking about where to put their next gastropub.
“Whether it be The Windsor Hotel or a high-end restaurant in London, you learn from everything,” says Chris. “We’re not here to be trendy, we’re not here to be cool. We want longevity.”
Mayfair Lane Pub & Dining Room
72 Outram Street, West Perth
(08) 9425 5222
Mon to Sat 11:30am-late