They say that sharing is caring, and we couldn’t agree more. Here’s just a few tapas joints you need to check out for your next date night (and yes, we’ve bent the rules a little as to what exactly constitutes tapas).
Andaluz Bar & Tapas
Remember the good old days, when small bars were a revelation to us, and we couldn’t get enough of those totally, soooo Melbourne laneways? Andaluz was right at the forefront of the small bar scene and has stayed there ever since. These guys nail classic tapas, with staples like patatas bravas, boquerones, calamares and more – but you’ll really want to suss out the specials board for some shining stars.
21 Howard Street, Perth
Hailed as Perth’s first tapas bar, Duende was, for many of us, our first introduction to Spanish food. This date-night favourite has been dishing up tapas in Leederville since 2003, and coincidentally have their 18th birthday coming up! They’re launching a brand new menu at the end of September 2021, and if you book before the end of the month you’ll go in the running for a $100 voucher, or book in for a meal on the 22nd of September to enjoy a complimentary glass of sparkling. Olé!
662 Newcastle Street, Leederville
For some of the most legit tapas this side of Barcelona, you’ve gotta head to Rustico. The bar is perfectly positioned for a post-swim snack and sangria – especially during their happy hour specials on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays; where you can pick up both for a bargain. As they say: full stomach, happy heart!
19/61 Rockingham Beach Road, Rockingham Beach
Pinchos has quickly become synonymous with tapas in Perth. With “authentic European prices”, it’s no surprise! Pinchos clasicos start at $1 and $2, for small serves of anchovies or chorizo (at that price, it’s hard to argue against trying them all). Spanish omelettes are an authentic touch, and there’s a huge selection of Spanish cured meats and conservas – gourmet tinned seafood like sardines and mussels. If you have room, work your way up to the bigger tapas plates and raciones (calamari and chorizo with piquillo cream, meatballs with goats cheese and pine nuts, pork skewers with salsa verde to name a few).
749 Newcastle Street, Leederville
When the husband and wife team behind super popular food truck Comida do Sul opened Madalena’s at the start of 2019, it was no surprise it became one of the most talked about restaurants in Perth, and Australia at large. This relaxed boteco might not fall as strictly within the tapas parameters, but it has a menu designed for sharing that celebrates local seafood, as well as a wine list curated in conjunction with the guys at Wise Child. You’d think you were on the beach in Barcelona if it wasn’t so classically Perth.
406 South Terrace, South Fremantle
Boobook Bottles & Bar
West Perth bottle shop Gangemi’s has transformed into Euro-inspired wine bar Boobook. While you can still pick up a bottle or two, the bar menu meanders through Europe, with Spanish classics like sardinas con tomate pan and jamon serrano, Italian favourites like local burrata by La Deliza Latticini and overflowing plates of mortadella, or decadent French cheeses served with Miller + Baker baguette.
1288 Hay Street, West Perth
While Hibernian Place’s Garum is like a slice of Rome in the Perth CBD, Picada is serving up the Spanish vibes. All your favourite tapas bites are well-represented, from Catalan tomato bread to jamon croquettes, charred chorizo and beef-filled empanadas. That’s enough to make you say “olé!”
480 Hay Street, Hibernian Place, Perth
We admit we’re stretching the parameters for what we’d strictly call tapas, but Mummucc’s menu is basically a running list of delicious snacks to share – and if that isn’t the spirit of tapas, we don’t know what is. Smoked sardines on charred sourdough, mammoth Skull Island prawns with bottarga butter and chilli vinegar, Freo octopus skewers with spicy nduja oil… We’re pretty happy to bend the rules when it tastes this good.
6/46–56 Grantham Street, Wembley
Yeah, yeah – we can’t even follow our own rules. But Pep’s small plate offerings are just too tantalising to not include. Their menu changes with regularity, so we can’t make any guarantees of what they’ll have, but think: amazing charcuterie via Sal‘s, tuna crudo, or Barcelona sardines served with lemon and chilli salt.
492 Stirling Highway, Peppermint Grove
Sweetwater Rooftop Bar
Sharing is the name of the game, and Sweetwater nails it on that front. Their pan-Asian share plates are the perfect accompaniment to a refreshing cocktail on the water – sharing delicious snacks in the sunshine with a drink sounds close enough to tapas for us.
Level 6, 1 Silas Street, East Fremantle
And if you’re feeling a bit DIY, why not stop into some of our favourite gourmet delis to stock up on tapas essentials you can have at home?
Header image: Picada