A slick and chic new bar in Subiaco, housed in the historic Simon Chugg art deco styled building just across the street from the rail station, with a dazzling roof top bar to boot, New Normal is adding much needed life to the Subiaco dining and drinking scene which is picking up after years of Council inspired decline.
Proudly showcasing local produce – vegetables, meat, seafood, wine, beer and spirits – New Normal is setting new standards in reducing food miles, or kilometres.
Wine lists and menus are not printed out but black boarded – no waste being one of their catch cries and what excellent and innovative dishes are listed, all designed to share, and the wines are similarly well chosen and represent a different take on the usual entrants to many of the lists around town.
Kicking off with a stunning dish of thinly sliced raw Rottnest scallops, doused in blood orange juice, a little green chilli and coriander – the scallop succulent, tasting like an explosion of the Indian Ocean in the mouth – the citrus curing the flesh while supplying fresh sweetness and the chilli a touch of zestiness. Loved it.
Onto crisp, crunchy spears of grilled Bickley Valley white asparagus served with sliced unripe strawberries imparting a sweet/sour flavour, with thin strips of air dried beef scattered across the plate- just a delight of presentation, flavour contrasts and texture.
And then Fremantle octopus char grilled, served with fennel and ink sauce – the octopus smoky, luscious and firm but still tender – the sauce sweet, round, deep and unctuous – simply outstanding flavours in this celebration of WA seafood.
Last we came to earthy, rich, meaty mushrooms with grilled sourdough adding crunch and texture, salty goat curd, and a sprinkle of Geraldton Wax fronds which give a quite distinct and different lemony, eucalyptus, herbal note. A fine conclusion to a terrific meal.
With our meal a bottle of the brilliant 2016 Doppelganger from one of WA’s most interesting and innovative wineries, Brave New Wine – Andries and Yoko are turning out quite spectacular minimal intervention wines and this is no exception.
A blend of Riesling, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris from the Great Southern – slight hints of oxidation –à la fino sherry – on the nose along with lots of lemon and some nuttiness – the palate chewy, tangy and tart, with loads of brisk citrus flavours.
After finishing our food and wine we retired to the roof top accompanied by a glass of the Swan Valley’s Old Young’s gin, a liberal splash of soda and dried and fresh orange slices – perfect relaxing end to the visit.
New Normal is one of the best new entrants to the Perth dining scene and if this is the “normal” then there will be no complaint from those looking for great food, wine and ambience.