bib & tucker, north fremantle

boardwalkI love breakfast. It’s probably my favourite meal of the day, to the point where I often lie awake at night thinking about what I’ll eat in the morning. Steel cut oats, seeded toast with lemon-drenched avocado, crunchy macadamia muesli, fresh crumpets with Lescure butter and raw organic honey… I love it all. I’m one of those people who could very easy eat brinner every night of the week. But then again, where would that leave tacos and braised pork belly? Oh, the dilemmas!

A few months ago, a friend of mine mentioned a little cafe in North Fremantle called Bib & Tucker. Described as the ‘next best thing in breakfast’, I naturally wanted to visit… mostly as a comparison to my favourite breakfast destination of the moment, Harvest Espresso in Victoria Park (a place that actually solves my pork belly dilemma. They serve it for breakfast. Really).

signage

We arrived mid-morning last Saturday. The sky was pale blue, slightly overcast, with thick clouds wafting like a scattered blanket. By the time we pried open the front doors, sweat started to bead on our foreheads in a sticky sheen.

Luckily, we were ushered to an outside table where the reliable Fremantle Doctor was blowing. Cool, salty air gently lapped at our skin as we perused the breakfast menu.

menu

There’s something beautifully balanced about Bib & Tucker. Old favourites such as pancakes, eggs and crispy bacon sit snugly alongside redemptive kale, green lentils, chia seeds and almond milk. If would be fair to say that as a patron, you can be as virtuous or indulgent as you want to be. My favourite kind of place.

coffeebandt hatAfter ordering our coffees, we selected three dishes from the breakfast menu: fig chia pudding ($15), smashed avocado on cornbread ($19) and house-smoked ocean trout tartare ($24). Despite various criticisms on Urbanspoon about the ‘terrible service’ at Bib & Tucker, we met a wonderful brunette waitress who delivered our food within 15 short minutes. Nothing wrong with that.

As for the food? Well, it’s safe to say that we were three happy campers on this Saturday morning. Everything that arrived was fresh, generous, beautifully presented and suitably nourishing. My selection was (typically) chunky seasoned avocado atop thick, toasted cornbread with fresh greens, quinoa and vibrant chive oil. Aaron chose (typically) the smoked ocean trout, which was deliciously salty, soft and delicate against robust fried capers, fresh asparagus, croutons and lemon mascarpone.

oceantrout2 chiaavo

My lovely mother (atypically) selected the chia pudding, mostly out of ‘curiosity’. The dish arrived in a mason jar crowned with fresh wedges of fragrant fig, pomegranate arils and toasted almonds.

For a woman who habitually chooses ‘eggs any way with toast’ (a.k.a poached eggs with wholemeal bread), she enjoyed the breakfast variation. The chia seeds carried a slight creaminess from the organic almond milk, beautifully complimented by the sweet figs, acidic pomegranate and toasted nuts.

chiabandt insideoutside

From scanning the crowd, it would be fair to say that Bib & Tucker is a beautiful embodiment of the Fremantle subculture: eclectic, relaxed, slightly hippy (as opposed to hipster; these guys were growing kale in loamy soil far before the first hipster discovered plaid) artistic and entirely wonderful. As an ‘artsy’ type myself, I felt right at home.

It’s a place to contemplate, breathe and feel nourished within 100 metres of the Indian Ocean. A place I definitely want to revisit. Soon.

beach docks

Bib & Tucker

18 Leighton Beach Blvd, North Fremantle WA 6159

(08) 9433 2147

Coffee: Tues – Sun, 6am – 4pm

Breakfast: Tues – Sun, 7am – 11am

Lunch: Tues – Sun, 12pm – 3pm

Dinner: Wed – Sun, 6pm – 9pm

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74 responses

  1. The ol’ urbanspoon ain’t always the most reliable that’s for sure :). I am sooooo keen on breakfast and I love it when chefs make it a little interesting. More will follow suit soon. It’s the new frontier I reckon!! This place looks good my friend. Nice write up too PS

    • Yes, everyone’s opinion is very subjective… and staff at restaurants go through good and bad days like the rest of us. I’m sure people feel justified when they write their comments but I often think that waiting and reflecting leads to a more balanced commentary! Thanks Suzanne x

    • Yes, I completely agree! Urbanspoon can be useful in some respects but some people are incredibly unfair in what they write. I also feel that the majority of patrons have absolutely no consideration of what a restaurant needs to go through in order to produce their meals/drinks… they expect instantaneous service for cheap prices!

  2. I haven’t been to Freo for years- this place does look very inviting. I enjoyed reading your dig at Kale- yes, old hippies have been growing it forever. It is a weed, not unlike a cabbage really. what would happen if we called it cabbage? One of my pet hates is this modern trend to stick kale in everything ( and do’t start me on Quinoa).

    • Yes, I definitely agree re kale… it’d be funny if it was called cabbage! It’s popularity would most likely drop. And yep, quinoa… I do love it, but it’s been completely and utterly overexposed in blogging circles and everywhere else. Hipster food, faddish I guess. I am glad that it’s nutritious though… as opposed to those ‘cronut’ things! xx

    • Thanks so much Ruby, it’s a great way to start the day isn’t it? And yep, we’re pretty lucky to live so close to the ocean. I often forget how many other people have to drive miles to get anywhere near the waterfront :)

    • It’s becoming a really popular thing over here… a little ‘gluggy’ due to the absorbent quality of the chia seeds but I like it anyway. Lots of goodness in a little pot! x

  3. Laura, this look exactly like the place that I would love to visit for breakfast – the menue sounds exicting and very balanced indeed. You posted such wonderful photos – I always enjoy looking at them so much! What a fabulous “virtual visit” – thank you!

    • Oh, I do wish that you could come and visit Andrea! I’d meet you there for breakfast! Glad that you enjoyed the photos anyway. We’re blessed with many beachside places here in Perth xx

  4. Hi Laura. Got to say first that I love this post! You and I are on some end of summertime wavelength. Plus we’re both getting figgy with it! Beautiful, your posts only make me long to get out and experience WA even more!

    • Come, come visit me ALice! We can go breakfasting together! WA is a truly beautiful place, I do love it here. I will miss fig season when it finally departs :( x

  5. I tend to ignore reviews these days. In fact I’ve found that I often will feel exactly the opposite from the reviewer. I ate last Sunday at a restaurant in San Francisco touted as the best new restaurant in the country, or something grandiose like that. The food was really amazing, but too designer for me to lure me back. And the ambiance wasn’t what I relax most in. But I can tell I would love Bib and Tucker. Since I live too far away to go there, I’m going to try to duplicate the cornbread with avocado and quinoa salad one that you enjoyed. It looks like the perfect way to start a day :-) (Sorry for the super long comment…)

    • Yes, so true Susan. I’ve thought the opposite of reviewers many times also. This place was wonderful, I definitely think you would’ve loved it. Lots of deliciously wholesome vegetarian dishes too. And never need to apologise for a long comment, I love them!! Seriously, it’s so nice to chat with blogging friends about foodie stuff! xx

  6. I’d go for the view alone, but the food looks darn good too. I’ll be checking it out next time I’m over. Love the vibe in Nth Freo. I too, adore breakfast. I never feel guilty about anything I eat for breakfast, as I figure I’ve got the whole day to make up for it!

    PS: Ummm, I must have read your mind re: breakfast tacos.

    • It’s such a gorgeous part of WA, isn’t it? Definitely stop in at Bib & Tucker when you next visit… you feel positively virtuous afterwards, even if you have the bacon (doesn’t being at the seaside erase all calories?!). And yes. Breakfast tacos = best thing ever. Loved your post! xx

  7. The views!! And OMG that menu. Looks like you chose very wisely (love that you went plural – can’t imagine making only one choice from those offerings). That egg looks perfectly plump. I’d be crying out for the pulled pork and royal blue croquettes though…
    I absolutely can’t stand Urbanspoon. Have read too many suspiciously-damning reviews (by people with only one review to their name) of some fabulous local cafes. I try not to look at it any more.
    Happy Easter Laura!

    • Yeah, I thought exactly the same thing Sas… some ‘suspicious’ review content, both overly positive AND negative! I’m definitely going to try the pulled pork next time… so delicious. Thanks so much, as always xx

  8. Um… where was my invite?! I don’t think a Saturday morning could get any better than this. You really did a lovely job of capturing the experience. A brilliant brunch by the sea… I am SO jealous!! xx

    • Aw, thanks Sue! I do think that this comment somehow turned up on the wrong post (assuming you were commenting about the marinated peppers!) but I definitely appreciate it. Glad that you’ve enjoyed the blog so far (oh, and I am equally obsessed with Ottolenghi, I have all of his books!) x

  9. I had to laugh as I imagined you lying there at night thinking about breakfast! I have a love hate relationship with breakfast. I prefer salty type things for breakfast and so love Indian style breakfasts and European style with croissant and lightly sweetened pastries. Unfortunately, American breakfast places are always just full of sickly sweet pancakes and syrups etc. I have yet to find a decent breakfast place here. At home, I just end up eating leftovers from the night before :)
    This place looks like a place I would enjoy, for the coffee alone!!

    • Hahaha, yep, that’s me! Food obsessed much! I’ve never actually had an Indian breakfast but I can imagine how delicious it would be. I’m definitely more for savoury foods in the morning (other than oats/porridge but I guess that’s not exactly sweet) so I can understand your frustration with American breakfasts. Wish you could try Bib & Tucker though, I think you’d like it xx

  10. Sounds an looks like a beautiful place to have some lovely breakfast, Laura! I share your passion for that foodie time of the day, and I would surely have loved that chia pudding & figs choice of your mother, looks comforting and fresh at the same time.

    • Claudia, hello lovely! Yes, she did enjoy the chia pudding. I didn’t realize how filling chia seeds were though… she could only get through half of the jar! Hope that you manage to visit Australia one day. I think you’d love it here x

  11. I don’t pay online reviews too much attention these days. I’ve heard some not too flattering tales about one of them, in particular, and now take what they say — especially the negative reviews — with a grain of salt. Besides, too many unhappy people use the anonymity of the keyboard to slam just about anyone and every thing, whether it’s justified.
    You do seem to find wonderful places to eat and the food always looks delicious, Laura. The Bib and Tucker is certainly no exception. I’ve been enjoying a “jar” of chia pudding every morning but mine has been with blueberries. You’ve got me longing for figs now more than ever!

    • You’re completely right John, people have no personal accountability for what they say during online reviews. It’s frustrating as it’s a personal attack on the restaurants or staff. I do love this place though John, wish that you could come try the fish in particular. So wonderful! And yes… not long til your fig season! I hope that the temperatures are warming up swiftly now!

  12. Now, this looks like a great & tasty cool breakfast resto for me! I love the interior & the food dishes of course too!

    I wished I could eat breakfast there with you! :) Thanks for the review! x Lovely pictures too! x

  13. Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day too and I really need a full tummy to go about the day. That was a great review. I wish you were in Sydney…then I’d just go to places recommended by you:-) Love the Chia Pudding in a mason jar..so pretty!

    • Oh, I wish I was in Sydney too! I haven’t been to your part of Australia since I was twelve, sadly. One day. I’ll have to get a list of places to visit from you when I do! Thanks for the sweet comment x

  14. Another breakfast fan here too. I can never understand people that ‘forget’ to eat breakfast. How? HOW? Can you forget the best meal of the day?! So many delicious breakfasty options. I can easily eat breakfast goodness three times a day.

    • I know, right?!! How on earth do people forget?? I think you’d love this place Brydie. Everything is local, mostly from Fremantle. The fresh-baked bread is incredible too… I’d go there for toast alone (but then again, you have your very own fresh sourdough which might even be better!). We are very much alike! xx

  15. Like you, breakfast is my favorite meal, and I would happily eat it during ANY time of the day… and this restaurant sounds like a lovely little find! I’d have wanted to try most everything on the menu, haha, but it looks like your selections were solid!

    Keep up the great work, lady! You’re just giving me more and more reasons to visit Australia one of these days. ;)

    • Oh you definitely need to make it over here one day! Come stay with me, we can breakfast all day long!! Thanks sweetness, haha… don’t worry, I’ll be working my way through the menu gradually! xx

      • Sounds like a plan to me, girl! Australia, hanging out with you AND breakfasting all day? What more could a girl ask for? Enjoy working your way through the menu… that’s one of my favorite things to do at a favorite place, and I need to find a few restaurants in Dallas to do that at, since all the ones I’ve eaten EVERYTHING at are in my college town.

  16. Pork belly for breakfast! How awesome. I love that you put so much thinking into breakfast, I only do that in the weekends when I have a bit more extra time for it! Though what I do is that when I swim laps I dream of what I’ll be cooking for dinner later on, lol. Gosh, whenever I do get around to going back I must visit Freo, you’re post with the pictures made me miss it :)

  17. I have been told that the food down under is just amazing … and your photo is proof enough. *smile What an amazing presentation … so fresh. Can’t wait to get there, but it will not be this year and next spring hopefully I will make to Hong Kong and Japan. *smile

    • Oh, thank you lovely. Yes, definitely visit ‘down under’ one day! I do think that you’d love the sunshine, fresh air and the amazing food. Sounds like you have exciting travel plans underway. I’d love to visit Japan one day! x

      • Yes, they are only plans so far – but normally I put all my travel plans into action. I’m visiting Perth because I have a blogging sister there. But Japan first. *smile

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