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Published March 25th 2014
A not-so-common experience in the heart of Freo
I was forever searching at Bread in Common but I couldn't find it. I couldn't find a fault. Not even one, tiny, miniscule problem that would turn my smile on an angle, cause my head to shake in dismay. From the first moment we walked in, we were greeted by not only the barista but also by the two waitresses we walked past on the way to our table. Friendliness was abound at this smooth joint today.
It is an epic place, hidden away from the main coffee strip, with lightbulbs hanging from the ceiling and exposed brick giving it that raw, warehouse feel. The kitchen is open, and what a big, boisterous kitchen it was. The chefs were genuinely happy to be there, their workspace surrounded by big jars of spices and oddly shaped pumpkins.
We sat on a long, wooden, communal-style bench, and straight away ordered one of their three $8 juices on offer, the lemon, celery, beetroot, apple and parsley combo. Fresh, smooth, slightly sweet and served in a kitsch little jar, they had me from there. They didn't have high chairs, so the gentleman serving us offered to organise a table with space for a pram - I told him not to worry as I know my little rascal would want to crawl and wriggle around anyway, and I best hold her on my lap.
[ADVERT]He promptly took our food order, understanding of the fact it can be hard to juggle kids and the enjoyment of food all at the one time. We thought it wise to try their fresh, house baked bread, made in their affectionately named ovens Hansel and Gretel.
At $2/person for a mix of traditional village and sourdough wholemeal bread, we were presented with more than enough to feed the kids as well as ourselves. We opted for the Preston Grove olive oil, house churned butter and hazelnut dukkah as accompaniments. The creamy, salty butter is out of this world, unlike anything you buy at the store. The bread was everything you'd want in a loaf: soft on the inside, crunchy crust on the outside. The sourdough wholemeal had a fantastic earthiness, and proved to pair well with the house-made butter.
soft, pillowy bread with some choice accompaniments
I have one rule when it comes to dining out, and it's that dessert happens. And, oh, I'm glad it happened today. The brownie was slightly fudgy, although I could have done with it being even more so, and served with a chocolate ganache on top. Roasted hazelnuts scattered throughout provided a Nutella-esque tone that just worked. It went perfectly with the takeaway chai I ordered, with a drizzle of honey to sweeten me up some more. All this came to $25 - an absolute steal for a light brunch of such quality.
I'm keen to return and try their selection of 'plates', ranging from $3.50 to $26, including dishes such as quinoa, chia, pineapple, coconut and lime or the lamb ribs with chilli, mint and black garlic. They also have cured meats if you so wish to pair them with their breads, and toasted sandwiches as well as sweets.
Open from 10am every day, they are open until late on Fridays and Saturdays, closing at 10pm the rest of the week. I was still searching at the very end, right up until we paid for our bill, but they had it in the bag. Well done, Bread in Common, for a not-so-common experience in one of my favourite suburbs in WA.
Even though I agree the food is quite exceptional there if you go when the restaurant is full it is quite a different experience. Once my friend and I were squeezed in between two other groups of people, which everyone found a bit awkward as we were elbow to elbow. They took 20minutes to even take our order and another 15minutes at the end to come back with our bill after we asked several times. They also never took a drinks order from us which we had to remind them to do twice.
I recently went to this restaurant with some friends, and was going to buy one of their small loaves, to take home. At $10, it seemed horrifically overpriced. It's a shame, but none of us could justify how a tiny loaf of bread could cost that much.