Saturday, 6 April 2013

Miss Kitty's Saloon, 6052

Themed bars. I’m a sucker for them. In this scenario it’s a Western saloon in Austin, TX….but minus the live band and add classier food.  Jean pocket seat covers, free unshelled peanuts, American soundtrack, clustered old furniture, plywood booths and a preloved piano, are some of the saloon style fixtures that give this place character. Borderline tacky (in a good way!) and of course less lived-in than the real deal, Miss Kitty’s is a comfortable venue with a serving of cheek.

There is just the right amount of dim light to enable a good time vibe and a steady flow of libations. Because it feels more natural to order a succession of ‘Paloma’s (grapefruit, lime, tequila, $14) mid-week, when the lights are dim, no? 

The food! Its inventive, cooked well, and largely made on site (read: house cured ham, and homemade pickles and sauces). Most importantly though, the nosh is different. Never before have Perth dinner menus rendered such combinations as – chilli con carne on a waffle, or chicken wings on a pancake. If you’ve ever ventured to the U-S of A however, you’ll know these kind of fearless, sweet and fatty food pairings are commonplace in the deep South. Expats be mindful though, ‘cos this Kitty does things a little different from the motherland. Miss K recreates Canadian and US diner comfort food favourites, in a suited up and slimmed down manner. Case in point: the Mustard Cured Meatloaf, $19. Served with a crumbed prawn and a tinsel of fresh greens, it’s more terrine than beefcake and will probably be the most delicate meatloaf you will ever see. Miss Kitty’s is not so much about eat-til-you-bloat grub, and more concerning small, tasty plates that are made for sharing. On that note, the portions could be a little more generous for the price. Bad Kitty. 

The hospitality philosophy at Miss Kitty’s doesn’t fall far from what owner Ian Lawless did with his earlier venture at Kistch Bar - leisurely, social dining. Order a couple of items at a time, share the flavours, and relax with a brew between dishes.

On a Wednesday night we hit the ground running with the Empanadas ($9 for 3). The slightly flaky and yellow pastry gave way to an unconventional filling of broccoli and ricotta. They were tasty as all git-out! The two-bite morsels came with delicious smoked tomato ketchup that I just wanted more of. 

Broccoli and ricotta empanadas, $9

BBQ Mopped Chicken, $25, albeit the least outstanding of the night, was still enjoyable. The chicken itself, was outperformed by the accompanying house-pickled vegetables. Can I buy a jar of these? 

BBQ Mopped Chicken, $25

As a fan of cornmeal, an order of the Beef Chilli topped corn waffle with avocado cream, $9 hit the spot. The waffle was light and fluffy, with a satisfying little crunch. It worked wonders against the smooth avo cream and the wet meat mince. 

Beef Chilli, corn waffle, avocado cream, $9

A Texan culinary classic- Pork Ribs ($14.5 for 6-7 ribs) felt necessary. Rubbed with Tamarind and served with sweet yoghurt, corn and chilli sauce, the treacly and savoury ribs had a scrumptious char to them, but were a bit slim on the flesh. 

Tamarind Pork Ribs, $14.5
Service – dressed in doo-rags and gingham- comes with a ‘we’re-new-and-want-to-make-a-good-impression’ enthusiasm, but a few teething problems too. I credit the open manner to food service though. You don’t feel rushed to eat up and hit the road. 

Rusted old objects decorate the room
Miss Kitty’s is an adventurous new addition to this side of town, and I only hope it acts as a catalyst for further pursuits at the Inglewood end of Beaufort St. I suggest y’all round up your gang for a good time, and hotfoot it to the saloon!

Free candy jars!
Hits: Friendly vibe, customer service, novelty factor, and above all- the ballsy, interesting and tasty food. Empanadas and Ribs especially yum.
Misses: Not high value for money, a few creases in service timing.

Miss Kitty's Saloon on Urbanspoon

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