Getting to the ‘Pear’fect Pantry is like following directions on a scavenger hunt. There are lots of signs by the side of the road so you know you’re on the right track, but the cafe’s not visible from the street.
From the front of the block of flats called Moondine Gardens, head in the direction of the arrows on the signs.
Follow the footpath and you should come across a laundromat. Stay on the path and walk towards the back of the laundromat.
Hidden behind the laundromat is another red and brown brick and tile building with an assortment of tables, chairs and pot plants out the front. This is The ‘Pear’fect Pantry cafe.
I love the chalk drawing of tumbling green pears on the blackboard at the front of the cafe. There are many more pears (the decorative, non-perishable kind) scattered throughout the cafe. If I came here with kids, I’d get them to play a game counting the pears.
There was initial confusion when we showed up on a Monday morning in search of breakfast. I’d done my research and on the way to Wembley I explained to Jac that there’s a limited breakfast menu on weekdays. But the menu on the counter appeared to be the full weekend menu (which looks pretty fantastic, by the way) and we couldn’t see a weekday breaky menu anywhere (couldn’t find one online either). The staff seemed perturbed, almost unhappy that we wanted breakfast.
“We don’t have the full breakfast menu on weekdays,” they said.
“No problem,” we replied.
But rather than just telling us what was available, we were left standing at the counter awkwardly – it seemed it would be up to us to ask what we could have. It was an uncomfortable, strange beginning. Not a great way to make customers feel welcome and certainly, ordering breakfast shouldn’t be a puzzling experience.
Thankfully, things improved after we eventually placed our order. Our two large soy flat whites arrived first, creamy and rich.
Jac ordered an eggs Benedict roll, a toasted roll filled with ham, egg, spinach and a blob of thick hollandaise that oozed out with every bite. The toasting squashed the roll so it looked like someone had backed their car over it but Jac assured me it was a very tasty sandwich.
I ordered scrambled eggs on toast with avocado. I prefer a slightly riper, softer avocado, but the buttery eggs were wonderful, light and fluffy on the crusty toast. Just a sprinkle of pepper, fresh and simple. I would order this again.
The ‘Pear’fect Pantry uses organic ingredients and local producers including Yahava organic coffee, organic teas by Tea Tonic and free range eggs by Ellah.
There are comfy couches as well as regular cafe-style tables and chairs. And for the littlies, adorable old-fashioned child-sized wooden chairs and table loaded with colouring books and pencils.
Mismatched furniture, ornaments, bookshelf full of cookbooks and pictures on the walls – it’s garage sale chic with oodles of cosy character. I’ve written about charming little cafes that remind you of visiting grandma’s cottage – it’s the same sort of feeling here, but this time your granny lives in a suburban caravan park (nothing wrong with that, as granny’s an awesome cook).
While we were there, a steady trickle of customers dropped in for coffee. For most, it was “Just my usual!” Trackies, lycra and damp hair seemed to be the unofficial uniform, bicycles parked out the front. Another lovely neighbourhood cafe and happy loyal locals.
In the absence of any children, we played “Spot the Pear”. My favourite pears were the golden ones standing proudly in front of the coffee machine, like storybook fruit picked from a magic tree in a mysterious forest.
We must’ve just rocked up at a bad moment (yes, the cafe was definitely open). But beyond that pear-shaped beginning, we enjoyed nice coffee and wholesome, simple, tasty food. I’d still like to return to The ‘Pear’fect Pantry for breakfast on a weekend.
The ‘Pear’fect Pantry
49 Herdsman Parade
Wembley WA 6014
Telephone: (08) 9284 1710
Monday to Friday 7am to 4pm
Saturday and Sunday 8.30am to 2.30pm
Don’t forget to enter for your chance to win one of five double passes to see Jiro Dreams of Sushi, opening 10 May at selected Australian cinemas. Closes Saturday 12 May 2012 at 9pm AWST (Perth time). Check out the details, watch the trailer and enter!