When I first started blogging, it was simply because I love food. And that much hasn’t changed; I still adore eating, cooking and watching others hone their culinary crafts. But now I’m so much more conscious of things like supporting local producers, reducing food miles and using food in it’s entirety to minimise waste.
And it’s because of this that when I received an invitation to attend a Saturday morning brunch launch at The Mantle, an event focused on putting the spotlight on WA produce, I was definitely interested.
A sun-dappled outdoor long-table event was on the cards, with some of the farmers responsible for growing and rearing the likes of quinoa, buckwheat and pork, in attendance too. And of course the great guys from Kommunity Brew, my favourite local kombucha experts who unveiled their new seasonal flavour on the day too.
The new brunch menu was unveiled by Head Chef Stuart Law, who talked through the immensely Western Australian slant to ingredients and the way he has treated them in use.
It’s obviously a point of passion for Stuart, and showed in each dish that made it’s way to the table for us to share. The best way to eat in my opinion because you get to try more!
First out was the Limeburner’s port cask whiskey cured ocean trout bagel with spiced beetroot relish and citrus cream ($18.00), closely followed by GH Produce paleo granola with aperol poached autumn fruits and organic yoghurt ($14.00).
That granola for me was beautiful and a real showstopper. Simple but really tasty, especially with the way the autumnal fruits were treated. Very memorable and very delicious.
The Karri Hill buckwheat pancakes with Black Label Berky bacon, maple and wattle seed mascarpone ($18.00) had that lovely buckwheat texture and flavour, though managed to avoid being dry and crumbly as some can fall folly to. For me though, the bacon stole the show and was just ridiculous. Fatty, melt in your mouth, and super morish. Give me a plate of that bacon any day.
I didn’t get to try the Little Creek Farm pasture raised eggs omelette with house made kimchi ($16.00) because I got too excited eating some of the other dishes, but it looked bright and happy.
I thought the Blue Ridge smoked trout scrambled eggs with pan-fried kale and Karri Country potatoes ($21.00) was a lovely variation on your classic scrambled egg dishes. The trout was so meaty and definitely sung from the smokey flavour; and who doesn’t love potatoes on the side! Hearty but not overly fatty at all.
The real dish of the day, for me, was the probiotic bibimbap bowl with pickles, brown rice, Narrogin quinoa, slow egg, edamame, nuts and seeds ($18.00). A nice spin on a classic Korean dish, this felt so healthy and yet flavourful. It was a textural delight, and because I have a ridiculous obsession with slow eggs, it hit the spot ten fold.
Our breakfast finished with the jerk fried chicken waffles, accompanied by Limeburner’s barrel aged Nannup honey ($19.00).
Fried chicken – well, it’s always a winner. But this was really good: steaming hot and crunchy on the outside, juicy on the inside. It’s a classic ingredient pairing but works for a reason. And the honey, which is aged in whisky barrels had a distinct taste that added a new dimension.
And just like that, we’d tried almost all of the breakfast dishes on offer at The Mantle! It was an enjoyable eating experience, not just because of what we were tasting, but also because of the ingredients used that were chosen to support the local industry. More restaurants should be doing this, and it really makes my heart sing knowing we can directly and indirectly show some love to WA farmers and producers not just with the food we buy to consume at home, but also when we’re out and about.
Now while that was definitely enough food, a few of us girls stuck around to discuss the upcoming food and drink symposium being held on 28 May with organiser Ai-Ling. So we picked a couple more dishes to munch on while we worked.
Freshly shucked oysters ($4.00 each or $18.00 for a half dozen) and broccoli salad with Cambrey sheep milk feta and pomegranate dressing ($15.00) were on the cards from the lunch menu. Both fresh, both light and both tasty. Consider me ridiculously full by the time I rolled out of there (with some take away kombucha growlers in hand too), but it was a beautiful day in the sunshine down in lovely Fremantle.