BREAD IN COMMON, 43 PAKENHAM STREET, FREMANTLE
Bread in Common, a clever combination of restaurant, bar and bakery is Nic Trimboli’s latest project and second for 2013, only eight months after the opening of Gordon St Garage. The industrial-look fit out in a converted warehouse is all exposed beams, original brick work and dangling light bulbs – simply stunning.
The restaurant is based on communal dining featuring big long wooden tables, a lot like Trimboli’s Il Lido in Cottesloe. There are two different menus, a brunch menu from 10:00 am and dinner menu from 5:00 pm. The brunch menu is mostly share plates with a cured meat section and a few toasted sandwiches – and of course breads with a selection of oils and spreads. There is not really any breakfast items except toasted fruit bread, anchovy toast with egg yolk and mouse traps. It was very un-kiwi of me to have to google what a mouse trap was – the New Zealand version of cheese on toast, usually served with egg and bacon, I must ask my mother!
Just as our waitress left the table we realised that we had not ordered the star attraction – bread! So we had to call her back over! We added common loaf with some Preston Grove olive oil and whipped pork-pistachio, fennel to our order. The bread knowledge comes from partner Gotthard Bauer from Yallingup Woodfired Bakery. The bread is baked in wood-fired ovens made of volcanic rock, using ancient recipes and traditional methods.
Asparagus, egg, sugar snap peas, quinoa, pecorino was beautiful, definitely my favourite dish of the day. Such a fresh, summery dish, with the added bonus of being pretty healthy! The egg was still warm and runny which gave a bit of moisture to the dish, sticking pleasantly to the quinoa and there was just enough sharp pecorino to flavour the dish without making it heavy.
Coppa, chargrilled cos, peach, olive crumb offered another pleasant meatless surprise – cos lettuce charred on a grill tastes amazing! I am not always a fan of fruit in a savoury dish, but the peach worked great with salty coppa and textural olive crumb.
Duck fat roasted potatoes, rosemary, ketchup were cooked well, but in hindsight, did not overly go with the other dishes we had ordered. Still great to nibble on though.
Lamb ribs, mint, chilli, black garlic – the meat was lovely and juicy with a hint of smokiness to it, but the sauce reminded me of that disgusting supermarket mint sauce that we poured all over lamb roasts and chops back in the 80’s! The sauce looked dull on the plate and was quite over powering which was a shame because the meat was cooked so well and spoke for itself, it did not need to be smothered in a strong mint sauce.
Definitely worth a return trip, the menu is very seasonal so it will be great to head back in Autumn when the weather cools down.