118 -120 Rokeby Road
(08) 9388 3077
Friday night Ondine and I made it to Bistro Felix for dinner. I've been there before for lunch and in my opinion it was - not bad. A reasonably priced bistro, an ok by the glass wine list, with a few premium bottles if the mood took you, and the food was at the upper end of "good".
So I was expecting the dinner menu to blow me away, especially with all the good reviews they had been getting over the last year. Frankly, and this is a spoiler - I was underwhelmed.
It was a quiet friday night, with the home footy team on the TV playing finals games, so Subiaco was dead. We got a booking easily the night before and at 7pm the place was less than half full.
The wait staff were friendly, but felt a little pushy. I think I was asked perhaps four times if I was ready to order a drink in less than 20 minutes after sitting down.
The inhouse audio was a tad disruptive. The wine list and menu were simple photocopies held together with bulldog clips. The butter served with the bread rolls (the bit I got anyway) was generic Western Star and it was on the turn. Oh and the Head Chef and the Somelier have both apparently left.
What the hell has happened to the place? Felix used to be a rival for Must.
Thankfully the food was good - but it is still overpriced for what it is. Mains here start at $32 and leap up to $42. They do a "recession"special, though which may keep the price down - if you pair up two courses. In which case it will cost you $50 per person. It's not a big saving though $3-$16 on an entree/main combo, or nothing much if you go dessert.
We started with the "Daily Charcuterie Plate ($28)" - Good Jamon Serrano ham, walnut bread, smoked duck breast, and a pork hock terrine . I liked the flavors and it wasn't a bad entree for two.
For mains, Ondine had the "Market Fish, herb gnocchi, purple cauliflower, artichoke, pipi's, beetroot nage"($42).
The fish - a fillet of Barramundi was well done.
A generous thick piece of fish with the skin fried crispy. The gnocchi was good, but felt a little out of place with the choice of fish. The pipi's were actually clams, but the broth from them and the golden beetroot sauce worked well together to complement the fish.
I had the "Margaret River Venison loin, juniper and pepper crust, parsnip and thyme pithivier" ($42). The venison was perfectly cooked and tasted fantastic. The crust however... was pretty vague. It may not have been there and it may have tasted absently of cracked pepper - or that could have been the sauce. The loin was laid out on a bed of wilted spinach which was nice enough but the pithivier was cold and didn't taste like much at all.
Moving on to dessert, we shared the "Vanilla crème brulee, chocolate and date. biscotti" ($15)
This was pleasant, but in my personal opinion I would have held off on the candied orange peel. Those dark orange spots - peel. Some butterscotch or caramel - now that would have been tasty and would have worked with the chocolate, date, and cream flavours.
I wasn't expecting fine dining, but the bar has been set relatively highly for good bistro food. The price, and the ambiance were real downers for me.
13/20 - Go for lunch instead.