“What good new restaurants should I try?”

Broadsheet’s editors field this question, or a variation on it, almost every day. While we’d just as soon recommend one of Perth’s straight-up best restaurants or a long-standing institution, the pull of a hot new place is hard to deny.

So here it is: our edit of the best new restaurants in Perth from the past 12 months, updated monthly. Some of these places are redefining the way we eat and will go on to become classics. Others will be shorter lived. Either way, these are the spots we’re enjoying eating and drinking at in March.

Related Pages:
Best Restaurants in Perth
Best Restaurants in Perth's CBD
Best New Bars in Perth
Best New Cafes in Perth

Double Rainbow

The Rechabite is one of Perth’s most ambitious new hospitality projects. It encompasses a concert hall; Goodwill Club, a basement-level dive bar; rooftop bar Hello; and 240-person restaurant Double Rainbow. Executive chef Jesse Blake describes it as a “fast and furious bar and eatery”, and that’s a good way to put it. But while the cooking is fast-paced, the kitchen strikes a neat balance between the crowd-pleasing (potsticker dumplings, edamame and chicken wings, say) and the imaginative: XO butter clams with fries and wood-roasted bone marrow and flatbread.

224 William Street, Northbridge

Dilly Dally

It’s difficult to understate the importance of the Witch’s Cauldron. The Rokeby Road icon was a Subi staple for almost 50 years. Patrick Ryan and Jeremy Prus, who took over the premises, found themselves with some big shoes to fill. But they’d faced a similar challenge before, when they took over CBD stalwart Emporio and rebooted it as Lalla Rookh. They pulled it off. We can see Dilly Dally becoming just as much of a fixture as the Witch’s Cauldron. The food is comfortable and familiar: dishes include pork and veal meatballs, grilled flatbreads topped with mushrooms and taleggio, and some fine pizzas. The wine list is equally approachable, with drops to satisfy everyone from casual drinkers to grape nerds.

87 Rokeby Rd, Subiaco

Fleur at The Royal

Fleur refuses to be pigeonholed. There’s the French name, Japanese-ish food, native produce – even Greek drops show up on the wine list every now and then. What is certain, though, is that this one of the most exciting restaurants in town right now. It’s not fine dining in the traditional, white-tablecloth sense. But the cooking is intricate, the dishes are as delicious as they are creative and the service is warm. We recommend a post-dinner drink at the bar, especially one of the half-sized cocktails. Because who wouldn’t want to drink a Martiny or a Snaquiri?

531 Wellington Street, Perth

Double Rainbow

This Asian-inspired restaurant inside Perth’s new late-night performance space, The Rechabite, describes itself as a “fast and furious bar and eatery”. It’s quite the declaration, but the team here have the credentials to back it up. The chefs at this 240-seater have cooked at some of Perth’s best restaurants, and that experience shows in the confident menu. You’ll go for the crowd-pleasing potsticker dumplings, edamame and chicken wings, but it’s the imaginative dishes – such as XO butter clams with fries, and wood-roasted bone marrow and flatbread – that’ll have you coming back.

224 William Street, Northbridge

Kailis Fish Market Cafe

Kailis Fish Market is one of the city’s best-loved spots. Now, after a makeover – replete with dark timber, brass accents and arches – the waterside seafood restaurant is more accessible and bustling than ever. It’s a classic. And so is the food – but this is a cut above your average fish’n’chip joint. Choose from seven different fish fillets at the fry section. Or maybe Fremantle sardines and Shark Bay king prawns in the whole-seafood fry section? The fish-fillet burger is another standout. If raw and grilled seafood is your thing, you’re amply covered too. A 50-bottle wine list and bottled cocktail section are worthy counterparts to the food here.

46 Mews Road, Fremantle

Baan Baan

Bangkok Jump Street is one of Perth’s best-known Thai food players. Since popping up in 2014, we’ve often wondered when it would come time for the group to settle down and open a permanent restaurant. Baan Baan is that restaurant, and it’s been worth the wait. The menu has old favourites (the grilled pork skewer, and the roast pork and crackling salad, for example) but it’s the newcomers, such as crisp crab meat rolls and savoury fish custard, that really steal the show.

172 Newcastle Street, Northbridge

Le Rebelle

This bistro is comfortable but boisterous. Le Rebelle takes cues from the classic casual French diners of Paris and New York, and its menu is about crowd-pleasing dishes: roast duck and frites with a gravy boat of béarnaise, ricotta gnocchi with truffles and peas, and blue manna crab on brioche toast. A punchy and tight wine list (under 49 bottles) keeps the good times rolling. It’s a fun space, where tables are intentionally close to one another to up the atmosphere.

676 Beaufort Street, Mount Lawley

Tonic & Ginger

Fremantle’s heritage-listed synagogue lay dormant for over 20 years. Now, it’s The Old Synagogue, a new dining and bar precinct. The flagship is Tonic & Ginger, a two-level Asian restaurant at the centre of the former synagogue. The menu is broadly Southeast Asian, with some Chinese and Japanese influences. There are snacks, grazing plates and feasting-size dishes. Tonic & Ginger is aiming high, and it’s already proved to be a crowd-pleaser among locals. We’re excited to see how it settles into the Freo landscape this year.

92 South Terrace, Fremantle

Mummucc

When word got out that the Monsterella crew was opening a small bar a few doors up from their wildly popular pizzeria, interest lvels were understandably high. Mummuc lives up to the hype and then some, with Matt McDonald’s bold Italianate cooking – beef tartare with ‘nduja cream, say – complementing the beloved handmade pasta from Monsterella matriarch Maria Nicolo. An instant classic.

6 46-56 Grantham Street, Wembley

Madalena’s

The inspiration behind Madalena’s might be the neighbourhood botecos (bars) of Rome, Barcelona and Sao Paulo, but the vibe is pure South Fremantle. Come foe the breezy location in striking distance of South Beach, stay for a celar packed with lo-fi producers and inventive seafood dishes from Adam Rees (hello to you, razorback prawn, tofu and ginger crudo).

406 South Terrace, South Fremantle

Lupolab

Marco Silvestri is a native of Rome. His parents owned a restaurant there, which he worked in from a young age. So he’s been around coffee and pasta his whole life. That experience and appreciation for “Roman-style” eating and drinking is on full display at Lupolab. Excellent coffee roasted in-house is available all day long. At lunch, pasta dishes with simple sauces such as a beef ragu are the focus. Later on at dinner (Thursday to Saturday), those pasta dishes become more complex, and heftier dishes such as osso bucco also come into play.

151-153 Scarborough Beach Road, Mount Hawthorn

Automatic

Veteran restaurateur Michael de Marte (ex-Nolita and La Lola) wants to give Automatic to the people. Sitting pretty in South Perth’s leafy Mends Street, this smart-casual Italian diner nails the classics, including crisp Naples-style pizza, textbook pastas and gnocchi, and juicy (on-the-bone) chicken schnitzel.

Shops 5-6 35 Mends Street, South Perth

Besk

This one was also a long-time coming. Besk was supposed to open at the start of 2018, not midway through this year. But we understand why it’s taken so long: the 210-person bar also encompasses a restaurant, bottle shop and cafe. Ambitious, yes, but Besk pulls it off. The restaurant menu is a showcase for local produce, expressed mainly through a charcoal-fired grill and a rotisserie. That means plenty of steaks, roasts and flamed veggies.

264 Railway Parade, West Leederville

Boo Too

During the day this is a classic cafe. Pastries and sandwiches in the cabinet are good, the flat whites are on song and the vibe is relaxed. After dark, though, the woodfired pizza oven – which dominates the kitchen – comes to life and starts churning out some of the best pizza in the city. The style is somewhere between Neopolitan and Roman: the crust is thin and soft, but sturdy. All the flavours you would expect are available, but it’s worth opting for something a little different, such as the Donnie Brasco with asparagus, rocket, crushed pistachios and mortadella.

274 Bulwer Street, Northbridge

Panama Social

Not exactly a restaurant, but we couldn’t leave it off the list. That’s because one of Perth’s most exciting new bars also happens to be one of the best spots in town for a meal. The bright colours and plants in the dining room conspire with the rum-heavy tiki-leaning cocktail list to make you feel like eating something tropical. And the food menu – equal parts Afro-Caribbean and Brazilian – delivers that. The pao de quejio (Brazilian fried cheese doughnuts) and the fried chicken ribs doused in jerk sauce are must-orders.

245 William Street, Northbridge

Hoodburger Inglewood

Bowling clubs. Food courts. Music Festivals. Team Hoodburger has flipped burgers rights across the city. In March, brothers and Hoodbuger founders Matt and Tom Shaw opened their first “proper” restaurant on Beaufort Street. Inspired by ‘80s fast-food culture, the space serves all the Hoodburger classics plus test-kitchen experiments on Tuesday nights.

848 Beaufort Street, Inglewood