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Elmar's in the Valley

Home > Perth > Breweries | Craft Beer | Food and Wine | Lunch | Restaurants
by Douglas Sutherland-Bruce (subscribe)
Douglas has been a professional food writer since 1986. He is also an award-winning actor and director in Community Theatre and has been for many years. His blog may be found at:
Published December 14th 2016
A favourite restaurant does not disappoint
I have a particular soft spot for Elmar's in the Valley. Many years ago when my mother was still alive we took her as a Mother's Day treat to a particularly flash and well-known restaurant in the valley which I had booked weeks earlier.

When we arrived we were told, the family and I to get into line to confirm our booking. The line extended about fifty feet and there was nowhere to sit. I looked at the line and then at my eighty-two year old mother balanced on her two sticks.

I said something along the lines of 'Oh dear' (I am renowned for the sweetness of my temper) and we piled back into the car and off to Elmar's to throw ourselves on their mercy.

Elmars, German smallgoods, Beer, Beer Garden
Elmar's in the Valley (Photograph courtesy of Elmars)

Oddly enough they didn't laugh hysterically when we arrived on Mother's Day without a booking but couldn't have been kinder. They rustled around and got us a table in the really gorgeous Beer Garden until a table became available in the restaurant proper and really made my mother's day a bit special.

She didn't have all that many left and I shall always remember Elmar's superb attitude to service that turned disaster into a great memory.

Elmars, German smallgoods, Beer, Beer Garden
Elmar's in the Valley (Photograph courtesy of Elmars)

I have visited them on many occasions since and have always found the welcome warm, the service friendly and the food excellent.

My most recent visit was at luncheon with a playwright friend to talk theatre, writing, murder and locked rooms and to eat and possibly have a beer.

The restaurant grew out of Elmar and Anette Dieren's German smallgoods business and the menu is quintessentially German - the menu has German translations, so one can, with confidence, order knoblauch-kräuterbrot off the bread side dishes (Cheesy garlic bread $11.90) and feel truly international.

Elmars, German smallgoods, Beer, Beer Garden
Elmar's in the Valley (Photograph courtesy of Elmars)

Incidentally that garlic bread is just heavenly, rich and aromatic and with just the right amount of garlic.

We shared a tasting plate for two ($37.90) as an entrée (or vorspeisen, for us world travellers) - these alter from day to day but always include a selection of excellent cheeses and some of Elmar's delectable smallgoods.

If we had known how filling and extensive it was going to be I'm not sure we'd have ordered main course as well, but we did.

James had the Hungarian Goulash, rich and satisfying, but not at all appetising-looking, stew is, after all, stew and it's hard to present it artistically while maintaining the generous portions that Elmar's always serve.

I looked at the Classic Caesar Salad with longing - Cos lettuce, Elmar's bacon bits, garlic croutons, topped with shaved Parmesan, boiled egg and creamy dressing (no anchovies, however) ($21.90), but my baser, greedier nature took over and I ordered the Bratwurst Plate ($39.90)

Elmars, German smallgoods, Beer, Beer Garden
Elmar's in the Valley (Photograph by D Sutherland-Bruce))

This is a huge serving of really delicious traditional German sausages, all made by Elmar's and served with mashed potato and sauerkraut and a side of mustard and, for me, a further side of bratkartoffeln (Fried potatoes with onion and bacon - $10.90)

The sausages are a traditional Bratwurst, a Cheese Kransky and an Elmar's specialty - a coarse beer Bratwurst - all delicious, all large and succulent.

If, unlike me, you're not that keen on sausages the menu has a wide range of options - pork, fish, German pasta, salads, steaks, duck, quiches and seafood. The have vegetarian options, gluten free options as well as dairy free for the lactose intolerant.

Elmars, German smallgoods, Beer, Beer Garden
Elmar's Beer Garden in the Valley (Photograph courtesy of Elmars)

Elmar's is broken into several distinct areas. The restaurant proper, all high ceilings and glossy polished wood with comfortable chairs as well as the beer garden, and the beer sampling bar and a retail area for smallgoods, gifts and souvenirs.

Although, God knows, we were replete with good food, we decided to end with a shared Sticky Date Pudding (Dattel fruchtkuchen) ($16.90) and butterscotch sauce and vanilla ice cream.

It was absolutely superb.

Very highly recommended indeed.
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Why? German food, smallgoods and craft beer.
When: Lunch Wednesday to Sunday; Dinner Friday to Sunday
Phone: 9296 6354
Where: 8731 West Swan Rd, Henley Brook
Cost: $35-$60
Your Comment
What a wonderful place you've found there, Douglas, homely AND caring - I love German cuisine!
by Elaine (score: 3|8295) 1686 days ago
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