Apparently I am becoming a bit picky when it comes to breakfast destinations. My good friend spent ages trawling through online menus trying to find a restaurant in the metro area that had interesting, out-of-the-box breakfast options. There don't seem to be that many apparently, but he did find Walter's River Café overlooking the water in Bicton, assuring me they had interesting sounding corn and zucchini fritters on the menu.
It may be a tad tricky to find, but when you get there you are greeted by the silence that comes with no road noise. Sure, there was plenty of other noise – boats on the river, families setting up camp for the day, kids on the equipment – but otherwise it felt still and calm, despite being relatively close to both Canning Highway and Stirling Highway.
Walter's River Café is open seven days a week for breakfast and lunch and Friday and Saturdays for dinner. They are also available for weddings and other functions and cater as well. My friend was right, the menu had a few interesting options including the fritters, but as long as the food is good it shouldn't really matter. Bircher muesli with berries ($14), wholemeal pancakes with maple syrup, strawberries and Greek yoghurt ($17), the big breakfast with free range eggs, roast tomatoes, mushrooms, sausage, bacon and beans ($20) all sounds pretty standard.
However they offer a breakfast bruschetta with avocado, tomato, feta and rocket ($21) and roasted mushrooms with spinach and goat's cheese on toast ($18) not to mention the intriguing sounding giant baked beans ($16) on toast with a poached egg and bacon. I presume they are referring to the size of the beans and not the serving size.
Sweetcorn and zucchini fritters with a side of not-too-crispy bacon
I ordered the corn and zucchini fritters with a $4 side of bacon, and the plate came with three fat, slightly floury fritters, two grilled roma tomatoes, some partially wilted spinach and a dipping sauce of green chilli and yoghurt ($22). The corn was fresh and not tinned and the bacon cooked as I requested. The chilli yoghurt was a favoursome addition but I found that because it was a runny dipping sauce it made the fritters go soggy and fall apart. A thick yoghurt sauce to smear on top might have worked better. It was still tasty though.
My friend tends to order either a big breakfast or eggs benedict/Florentine when we go out. He knows what he likes. It also means he can make educated comparisons between breakfast venues, and he declared the eggs florentine ($20) with a $5 side of smoked salmon one of the best he has eaten. The serving size was generous and although initially we were put off by the colour and sheer quantity of the hollandaise sauce liberally covering the plate, he declared it excellent and literally cleaned the plate.
The café is not overly flashy nor pretentious. You order at the counter which is located in a central area, and the dining area surrounds it on two sides in a semi-open verandah set-up, with a corrugated tin roof and café blinds to keep out the weather. Directly outside the café on one side is a kids play area with climbing equipment and slides. Excellent to send them out to play while you finish your coffee in peace. The view is across grass directly to the river. It was a peaceful morning and I would consider going again with the kids (they have a special kids breakfast menu $12), although that might take away the 'peacefulness' of the place.