Header image: Le Rebelle
While it’s fair to say Mt Lawley has had a rough go of things in recent years, 2021 is shaping up as a return to form for the once bustling drinking, eating and shopping hub. Cool new laneway precincts like the Alexander Buildings have paved the way for more cafes and restaurants, and an area that began to feel like a ghost town only 12 months ago is suddenly roaring back to life. Here’s why:
EAT & DRINK
We’ll kick off with a stalwart of the area, El Publico, a Mexican joint that has stood the test of Beaufort Street’s time for a few key reasons: Its authentic feel is backed up by staff who know and love the food and drinks on offer, and will always help you through their extensive tequila offerings. The food menu hasn’t changed a whole lot over the years, but it hasn’t had too; their tacos are perfect, their street corn should be named desire and those beef mogo mogo balls…yum! Just take it easy on that dangerous cocktail list.
511 Beaufort St, Highgate
Mary Street Bakery
Another joint that’s managed to hold firm through darker days, Mary Street Bakery has become so successful it’s spun off into four other venues around the city! Their fried chicken buttermilk pancakes are basically legend at this point, but basically everything on the menu is delicious (and sometimes a little decadent), and they sling a mean coffee.
507 Beaufort St, Highgate
If you’re chasing some authentic South American-style dining then head straight to Medellin. They’ve only been around for just over a year, but have a fervent fanbase who swear by their take on Colombian cuisine, and coffee that will put a serious kick in your step. A true hidden gem on the strip, and one you should definitely make the time (and tummy space) for.
568 Beaufort St, Mount Lawley
We’re not short on authentic Italian dining experiences around Perth, and Ischia would easily be up there with the best of ’em. Their wood-fired pizzas are un-beatable, along with their wonderfully warm service, one trip to Ischia is all you need to see why they’ve remained such a popular restaurant in Mt Lawley for so long. We may not be able to go to Italy any time soon, but Ischia will do a good job of placing you right in the gulf of Naples.
500 Beaufort St, Highgate
Clarences Company Store
Perhaps in the most positive sign that Mt Lawley is coming back stronger than ever is the just-announced return of Beaufort St fave Clarence’s, now called Clarences Company Store. One of Perth’s original small bars, they’re bringing that vibe back with a New Orleans jazz twist and we couldn’t be more excited. They’re back in business from 4pm Wednesday 20 January, and we get the feeling it’s gonna be a busy return.
566 Beaufort St, Mount Lawley
Jungle Noir is a camouflaged little bar that gets a bit slept on we reckon, but it’s definitely a fun spot to pop in to. The green surrounds set an automatically laidback and chill vibe, making it a lovely place to share a few tapas with pals. They’ve got a great wine selection and make a mean cocktail – a great place to visit if the hustle and bustle of the Queens across the road ain’t your vibe.
515 Beaufort St, Highgate
Serving pasta by the metre, Solo Pasta is one of the busiest joints along the top of the Beaufort St strip. You can put that down to a simple way of ordering, and letting the flavours do the talking. All you gotta do is order your flavour (classic, beetroot, spinach), pick the length (3m is the standard) and choose a sauce (tomato base, cream base or olive oil). The real secret weapon here is the plethora of gluten free and growing vego options – things we don’t usually get to see when it comes to pasta places.
628 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
You have not lived until you’ve had one of their sweet-as-hell cookies, warmed up and pumped full of ice cream and all the other toppings in the world. They’ve got vegan and gluten free options too, so now everyone can feel guilty after indulging in some of Perth’s sweetest treats.
7/81-83 Walcott St, Mt Lawley
Mack Daddy’s New York Slice
They say New York is home to the best pizza in the world, and Mack Daddy’s do a pretty terrific job of bringing that vibe to little old Perth. Their pizzas are huge, with a big slice option to go with 16″ and the monster 22″ offering – the same size as four regular pizzas. It makes Mack Daddy’s an awesome spot for group dinners, especially thanks to their well-stocked bar and an awesome cocktail list.
560 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
And speaking of far away places, you’ll feel like you’ve popped into a little Parisian haunt after stepping into the unassuming surrounds of Le Rebelle. A bistro, wine bar and restaurant all wrapped snugly into one (just check out this article’s header image for the vibe), you’ll regularly find Le Rebelle mentioned amongst Perth’s best restaurants. Once again (and an obvious feature of all good restaurants), it’s their warm, friendly, attentive service that really seals the delicious deal.
676 Beaufort St, Mount Lawley
New kids on the block Soho Lane have already established themselves as the go-to Beaufort Street breakfast joint. It’s the new venture from the loving team behind CBD fave Little Soho, their all-day brunch menu has plenty of surprises in store for the adventurous eater (Ox Tongue Pastrami Bagel anyone?), along with great staples and bread from the legends at Miller+Baker.
Alexander Buildings, 13/649 Beaufort Street
The quirky surrounds of Fez Cafe just behind Fresh Provs have been a popular choice for breakfast and lunch for a couple of years now, with an extensive all-day lunch menu that’s really well priced (only the big brekkie is over $20). The Moroccan Omelette (pictured) is a true delight, and they’re a great choice if you just need a quick coffee too, using local legends Kaltiva for that extra early morning kick.
83 Walcott St, Mt Lawley
Speaking of coffee (promise these segues aren’t as intentional as they seem), head to the back of the arcade near the Astor for Beaufort Streets secret caffeine killer – Bossman. They rock their own Twin Peaks blend, always keep it casual and will make you feel safe after one of those big nights where you’re a bit dusty, and just need a friendly smile to go with that sweet, sweet coffee hit.
3/669 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
Side door BBQ
Just off the Mount Lawley strip, take a culinary trip to the south for some authentic American BBQ smoked meats. Charred, slow cooked goodness with slaw, Mac n Cheese and all the trimmings to boot. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner; enjoy your perfectly cooked brisket and creamy corn at any time of the day or night. Arrive hungry and bring your stretchy pants, Side Door BBQ place has some pretty generous servings.
497-499 Beaufort Street (Rear), Perth, Highgate
One of the last remaining taverns around Perth that haven’t gone for the full white wash makeover that so many of this size seem to do, it maintains that ethos throughout with a healthy tap selection, modern pub fare and a rowdy beer garden on the weekends. If you’re looking for a no frills, fun and easy-going afternoon at the pub – bend the knee (and the elbow) at the Queens. PS they’re rocking a mean bottomless lunch and bloody mary offer over summer – check it out.
520 Beaufort St, Highgate
For nourishing, healthy food that’ll make you feel like you actually do treat your body nicely, Veggie Mama can’t be beat. Beautiful vegan, vegetarian and gluten free curries, massive salads, smoothies and all sorts will land on your table at Veggie Mama. The only trick is getting there when they’re open, or still have food left because when they’re out – they’re out!
5/567 Beaufort St, Mount Lawley
If you’re heading to the Beaufort St strip and not entirely sure what you’re feeling, make a bee line for Beaux Lane where the options are plenty. From Asian dining delights like Miss Potz, Chan Yuae Garden and Little B, to healthy breakfast vibes at Pax + Co, sweet treats at Ugolicious or big old burgers at Meet & Bun, there’s literally something for everyone. Even live crustaceans at Grab A Yabby!
Beaux Lane, Mt Lawley
SEE & DO
While the loss of Planet Video years ago still hurts, Planet Books has remained an incredible Mt Lawley mainstay. Bursting at the bookends with collectables, giftware and literature that spans all genres, it’s the book store for book nerds. They’ve got you covered for quirky, left-of-centre and last minute gifts, and will be able to find you anything you need. It’s done so well they’ve got a second store down on William St in Northbridge.
638 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
Cool Cats Vintage
Perth’s got a healthy little vintage store community that continues to grow, and Cool Cats Vintage is absolutely worth a visit if you like your clothing to come with a bit of pop culture history. From old school wrestling and Rodman shirts to other weird and hard-to-find items, there’s plenty to love in Cool Cats.
557 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
Luxehub is a brand new wellness hub that offers a variety of services to get your mind and body set. They’ve got yoga, massage and sound healing with hot yoga coming soon, but it’s their nighttime tipsy art work shops that have been a huge hit already. Classes like Visionboard + Vino, Paint + Sip, Blooms and Bubbles and Beeswax + Bubbles have been popular, with a special Valentine’s Paint + Sip coming up. Get more info via their website.
580 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
Beaufort Street Books
While Planet may be a powerhouse in Mt Lawley, a little trip down the road to Beaufort Street Books will net equally awesome results. Not only do they have an extensive selection in store, they’ve also got a huge online selection to look through, and anything they don’t have they’ll find for you quick smart. Plus they’ll deliver books anywhere in Perth – $5 for the first one, $1 for every one after that.
One of the coolest little shops in Perth and a gamer’s paradise, Retro Collect stocks a heap of old consoles and games. N64s, Playstations, Xboxes… They’ve got ’em all. They’ve also got a bunch of cool collectible figurines, and plenty of other fun and games to geek out on, and a handy online store if you can’t make it IRL.
5/665 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
Mt Lawley Art Framers
As far as great art framing places around Perth go, Mt Lawley Art Framers is right up there with the best – super friendly and helpful whatever it is you’re looking for, and won’t financially cripple you for the trouble. They’ve also got a fantastic selection of art pieces to buy in store, some larger feature pieces along with plenty of smaller options that make great gifts.
477 Beaufort St, Highgate
The Astor Theatre has been occupying centre stage of this busy locale since 1919. This multi-purpose facility hosts live music, comedy shows and community events all throughout the year.
659 Beaufort St, Mt Lawley
Catch A WAAPA show
The West Australian Academy of Performing Arts is nestled right in Mount Lawley. This means there is a plethora of highly skilled creatives putting on shows all the time. Enjoy anything from live music to theatre and dance. Head on over to their website and pick up a ticket.
Building 1/2 Bradford St, Mount Lawley
This article was written in collaboration with Michelle Thomas – Michelle is a Perth based freelance writer who loves to write about all things travel and lifestyle. When she’s not running her freelance business, she spends her time patting dogs, eating burritos and planning the next travel destination. Get to know her more at https://moshthefreelancer.com/.