My workmates and I have a new favourite food place in East Perth – it’s the City Farm Cafe at City Farm, on the edge of Perth city, next to Claisebrook train station.
The City Farm site was previously a scrap metal yard and a battery recycling plant before being transformed into an organic community permaculture farm in 1994. It promotes environmental awareness and supports local artists and musicians by hosting community-based projects, concerts and events. Over the years, many volunteers have helped to build up the farm and create the gardens.
When you walk down the stairs from Claisebrook station, you’ll see the City Farm signs. And you may even hear the farm, because behind the fence, happily clucking and scratching at the dirt, are City Farm’s chickens. You’ll hear the rooster crowing sometimes too. As one of the signs in the photo below announces, there’s an organic growers market at City Farm every Saturday morning.
The cafe itself is pretty new – we only started to notice the cafe signs around the place within the past month or so. I’ve been working in East Perth for more than two years and I must admit I’m getting bored with the food outlets. I was pleased to discover somewhere new to get lunch.
The food at City Farm Cafe is made from organic produce and ingredients and prepared fresh onsite every day. Even the coffee is made from certified organic coffee beans.
I don’t drink coffee, but my workmates have declared the coffee to be pretty good. The muffins are baked every morning and there’s a special deal – organic coffee and a muffin for AU$7.00. My first taste of City Farm Cafe food was a cheese and bacon muffin.
It smelled wonderful and tasted delicious! There were pieces of bacon, finely chopped herbs and little pockets of melted cheese inside the muffin.
We returned later that day to grab lunch – I tried one of the lunch specials, a lamb kofta tortilla wrap with salad and hummus. The wrap was really long (it’s hard to tell from the photo though) and surprisingly filling. The lamb kofta was delicious. I don’t like hummus very much and asked for my wrap with mayonnaise instead, which was no problem at all.
Another day I had an organic chicken and salad roll, which was made with this very interesting looking bread studded with poppy seeds, linseeds and rolled oats.
It was filled with sliced chicken, sundried tomatoes, cheese and salad bursting with freshness – cucumber, carrot, lettuce, red capsicum, tomato, red onion.
On this day workmate J got herself an organic chicken toasted foccacia. We really liked the look of each other’s lunch, so I cut my bread roll into two and gave J half, and she gave me half of her focaccia. So we each got to try two sandwiches that day! From memory, our sandwiches were around the AU$8-$8.50 mark.
The toasted focaccia was great! I went back later that week and had one all to myself! In fact, we’ve each had the focaccia again. A couple of times, in fact!
The banana and walnut muffin (AU$3.80) I had last week for breakfast was so fresh it was still warm.
As well as roasted walnuts, the muffin had big, soft pieces of banana in it. I really liked that the muffin wasn’t overly sweet. That’s my main complaint about most of the muffins you buy from cafes and bakeries – they are made with too much sugar, totally unnecessary when there’s sweetness in the fruit.
But my favourite City Farm Cafe lunch was the most recent – the soup of the day, served in a biodegradable, compostable takeaway BioCup.
Chicken soup with ginger has one of the best smells – delicious and comforting. The broth was clear but it was full of chicken, vegetables and rice. I enjoyed every moment eating this soup. If they ever have this as soup of the day again, I will order it again for sure. I wonder if they have any larger cups.
In the display next to the front counter I’ve seen a tempting range of sandwiches, focaccia, quiche, sausage rolls, little chicken pies, all homemade. In addition to takeaway items, every day there are lunch specials prepared to order. On the days I’ve been there at lunch time there have been lamb kofta tortilla wraps, beef pies and chickpea burgers. So far we’ve only bought takeaway lunches, but it’s a pretty popular dine-in cafe too.
The staff are friendly and eager to please. My hot tip for lunch time is get there early – by 12:30pm the queues are pretty long, and the takeaway items sell out very quickly. For me, the attraction is not the organic food in particular (although that’s good, of course) – it’s that the food is fresh, homemade and delicious.
City Farm Cafe
1 City Farm Perth, East Perth
Monday – Friday 7am – 2pm
Saturday 8am – 1pm
Telephone: (08) 9325 7230