PERI­WIN­KLE RESTAU­RANT

TRA­DI­TIONAL FRENCH MEETS MOD­ERN COAST TWIST

Life & Style Weekend - - MAGAZINE | FOOD & WINE -

BEACH cul­ture meets French flair at Pere­gian’s Peri­win­kle eat­ing house where a ca­sual coast vibe over­takes a dis­tinctly Eu­ro­pean feel.

It’s a wel­come change to see a restau­rant that be­lieves in gen­er­ous por­tions yet still de­liv­ers qual­ity and value so it’s no sur­prise that Peri­win­kle has be­come a favourite week­end haunt for the lo­cals.

Am­bi­ence and appeal

Thank­fully for the out­door din­ers it was a balmy win­ter evening in the Pere­gian Square.

Open for just over two years now, Peri­win­kle has at­tracted a loyal fol­low­ing and was packed when we ar­rived.

Ta­bles are on the foot­path out­side and there are an­other 12 or so ta­bles in­side.

There is a beachy café feel to the dé­cor with the French style bistro chairs a nod to the French Mediter­ranean theme for the menu.

Real es­tate is sought af­ter in Pere­gian and at Peri­win­kle they have man­aged to utilise just about every square me­ter.

Clean­li­ness

We ar­rived in the mid­dle of a busy week­end din­ner ser­vice.

The restau­rant was full and bustling. Empty ta­bles were quickly cleaned down and re­set.

How­ever, the bar was a bit chaotic and messy and the only rea­son for a slight mark down in points here.

The ta­bles, kitchen and bath­rooms were all tidy and clean on this visit.

Pre­sen­ta­tion

Peri­win­kle may be mar­keted as a French/mediter­ranean restau­rant but feels like a beachy café/bistro.

The French café chairs look good and are com­fort­able too. Staff are dressed in their own clothes- all black for the ser­vice staff.

If cus­tomers felt the cold then we saw blan­kets be­ing of­fered and gas heaters at the ready.

Cloth servi­ettes are a wel­come ad­di­tion to the table set­tings and the ta­bles big enough to share a few dishes.

It’s pretty tight in terms of space be­tween ta­bles but the right ori­en­ta­tion helps avoid the feel­ing you are right on top of your neigh­bours.

Ser­vice

Friendly staff were clearly un­der the pump with a full restau­rant when we ar­rived.

Menus were pre­sented quickly and our drink or­der taken.

It was a rea­son­ably long wait for our en­trees- per­haps the kitchen could have com­mu­ni­cated this to the floor staff to let us and some sur­round­ing table know that this was the case.

By the time we were ready for mains there was no wait as the kitchen had caught up again.

Food

Eu­ro­pean own­ers with a long his­tory of work­ing in restau­rants and ho­tels here on the Coast and over­seas have mar­keted Peri­win­kle as “French Mediter­ranean” and there are plenty of clas­sics with a mod­ern take avail­able.

There is a choice be­tween tartes flam­bees or four ap­pe­tiz­ers. We chose scallops, seared and served in a crispy potato bas­ket with a blue swim­mer crab salad and mayo.

The scallops were seared un­til caramelise­d but still juicy and not over­cooked at all.

The French onion soup could have been bol­stered by a stronger stock base. The cheesy toast that topped it was de­li­cious.

Af­ter a clas­sic French en­trée, we chose

an­other clas­sic- steak frites. Or­dered medium rare, mine ar­rived more on the rare side but it didn’t mat­ter too much as the scotch fil­let was melt in the mouth.

The moun­tain of hand cut, truf­fle sea­soned frites were more than I could eat and oh-so-mor­eish.

My din­ing com­pan­ion en­joyed their slow-cooked beef cheeks, served with potato puree, root vegeta­bles and jus- ridicu­lously ten­der and burst­ing with flavour.

The por­tion sizes are gen­er­ous and I’m not sure how we did it, but had room for dessert.

The tarte tartin was glo­ri­ously sweet with cara­malised ap­ples and a scoop of deca­dent home made dou­ble vanilla ice cream.

Crème brulees can some­times be over­whelm­ingly rich but not this one. There was just enough eggy rich­ness and the right amount of sweet­ness to sat­isfy.

Gen­er­ally the menu stays true to its French Mediter­ranean theme and por­tions are gen­er­ous.

Wine list

It’s a con­cise list which gives a nod to the French menu theme and also in­cludes sev­eral Ital­ian of­fer­ings and a few wines from Aus­tralia and New Zealand.

The lay­out within cat­e­gories is a lit­tle mixed up and this list could be im­proved by group­ing list­ings by grape va­ri­etal, re­gion or by palate weight.

Given the al­most ex­clu­sive French na­ture of the menu, I’d love to see the own­ers drop some of the Ital­ian of­fer­ings to bol­ster the num­ber of French wines on the list.

Value

Peri­win­kle de­liv­ers great value as the meals are gen­er­ously pro­por­tioned and served by friendly, efficient staff.

The restau­rant was full and there were plenty of reg­u­lar cus­tomers here when we vis­ited- a sign that it’s not just me who thinks the value here is good.

We en­joyed the French food con­tem­po­rary, not old fash­ioned, served in a ca­sual, fam­ily friendly Sun­shine Coast set­ting. There is no pre­ten­sion here, just hon­est flavours and good por­tion sizes.

PERI­WIN­KLE RESTAU­RANT Ad­dress: 2/216 David Low Way, Pere­gian

Beach

Hours: Open 7 days from 8.30am

Menu: peri­win­klerestau­rant.com.au Reser­va­tions: the­fork.com.au Phone: (07) 5448 3251 JUDGE’S SCORES

Am­bi­ence and appeal ................................... 7/10 Clean­li­ness .................................................... 7/10 Pre­sen­ta­tion ................................................. 7/10 Ser­vice ........................................................ 15/20 Food .......................................................... 26/30 Wine list ....................................................... 6/10 Value ............................................................ 8/10 To­tal ...................................................... 76/100

PHO­TOS: WAR­REN LY­NAM

FLAIR: Peri­win­kle Restau­rant owner Karin Doeldl and head chef Frank Boulay com­bine the best of the Coast and Europe.

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