The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, 31 January 2013

The Manse Restaurant, Perth

It didn't seem that long ago that we were in Perth during the Christmas holidays, yet we're gearing up to go on the plane again in exactly one week, this time to celebrate the upcoming Chinese Lunar New Year. It's just as well that I'm almost at the end of my backlog of photos from that trip. Unlike Hong Kong and Tokyo where there are no shortages of restaurants and shops open for business on Christmas day, Perth is like a ghost town on this day when everyone is at home celebrating the festive occasion with families and friends. There are a few restaurants open for those who don't want to slave over a hot stove and sweat by a hot oven on a very hot summer's day (it was 40degC, if I recall correctly), but these people should be prepared to dig a hole in their pockets. We were one of those unfortunate people, and being out-of-towners, we didn't have much choice. My father-in-law had also flown in to Perth from interstate for Christmas, and so naturally we had to spend Christmas day with him and his family. As they were also from out of town, we really couldn't avoid dining out. We went to The Manse Restaurant in Armadale, a suburb that is about a 30-minute drive or train ride south-east of the city centre. The restaurant looks like a large old house, and the interior is also laid out like one. Our extended family group (complete with the kids, siblings, grandparents, aunt, uncle and cousins) was seated in a private dining room that was just big enough to fit two large tables in, and it was a cool respite from the dry heat outside. The Christmas Day 2012 menu was AU$110 per person, which was at least a 100% markup on the restaurant's usual menu. I suppose the restaurant would have to make the salary attractive enough for the waitstaff to work willingly on a holiday, especially an important one like Christmas day. The waitstaff were pleasant and helpful with allergy requests, but they were also extremely busy serving a full house. The food was only average, but still enjoyable. The important thing was the company, and it was good to see everyone on that side of the family again.

Potato, Leek and Bacon Soup with garlic cheese crouton, to start with. It was great with the bread that came with the meal:

Crispy Cajun Squid, served with lime aioli and dressed leaves. Quite tasty, but I could only eat a few pieces because it was a rather rich entrée:

The main course was Roast Turkey Breast with macadamia and date stuffing, potato bake, brocollini, glazed baked ham and cranberry jus. I liked the slightly sweet stuffing, and the potato bake (underneath the turkey) was delcious:

Warm Plum Pudding with brandy custard and fresh cherry, for dessert. I think this was quite popular, but I didn't care much for the boozy custard:

This was quite expensive for a somewhat mediocre meal, but it provided a place for the extended family to meet and dine for Christmas day in Perth, and someone else did the washing up.

The Manse Restaurant
31 Church Ave
Armadale, WA 6112
Tel. +61 8 9399 6078

The Manse Restaurant on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

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