8 September 2013
A very generous birthday boy shouted our table of 5 to dinner at Prego in Floreat. This Italian restaurant is fancy: spotless wineglasses, waiters with exotic European accents, and cloth napkins. Dress up and order some sparkling mineral water if you want to fit in with the crowd.
Our meal for 5 people including 2 bottles of fancy white wine added up to roughly $425, but I couldn’t note down exact prices for this meal. My estimate is that you can easily spend around $60 for an entrée and main course. Extras like wine, bottled water, and sides will add up quickly. This is clearly a place where you need to ignore the bill and embrace the fine-dining experience.
Love freebies! The chef sent a plate of falafel with natural yoghurt and a sprinkling of tomato, cucumber, and red onion pieces. The falafel was smooth and packed with yummy herbs, such a treat.
Moreton bay bug
My first experience of the Moreton bay bug, which is best described as halfway between a prawn and lobster. The firm but creamy texture of this delicious crustacean sent it straight onto my list of favourite seafood! The combination of roasted eggplant slices, marinated octopus, avocado, rocket, aioli, and balsamic roasted cherry tomatoes was amazing. Everything on this plate was seriously delightful. Huge thumbs up.
Calamari fritti ($17.90)
A couple of my friends selected the deep-fried calamari served with a mixed salad and dill aioli. This squid was tender and the dish was tasty but it hardly had the same “wow” factor as my Moreton bay bugs.
Gamberi allaglio ($19.90)
The garlic and chilli prawns served on roasted capsicum are worth showing simply because of the stunning colours. Feedback about this dish was definitely positive and the prawns looked wonderfully juicy.
Pork chop with sweet potato mash
The handsome dining companion to my right let me sample a bit of everything on his plate. The artichoke and mushroom with aioli was divine: rich and tasty, but with perfectly balanced flavours. The huge serving of pork was well-cooked and tender - get some pork on ya fork!! The sweet potato mash was yum but I think the funny parsnip looks better than it tastes. Pity that the crackling was too tough and chewy to swallow (there’s a dirty joke there somewhere).
I enjoyed a bite of the veal which was tender and swimming in a rich gravy. The serving size was large so a few bites were actually left unfinished!
Twice cooked duck
My main was the duck which is braised first and then baked. The duck was moist and full of flavour, plus the skin was light and crispy. There was a slice of polenta with apple, some green beans, and chutney cherry tomatoes. I enjoyed all the food on my plate, but it didn’t work as perfectly together as my Moreton bay bug.
Roasted potatoes ($8.50)
The mains don’t come with many vegies so the waiter suggested we order a side of rosemary potatoes. These were yummy and everyone was full by the end of our two courses, but I died a little inside when I realised this small serving cost $8.50. For one dollar more, I can buy my favourite chicken rice from Tak Chee!
Complimentary birthday dessert
The waiters sussed out that there were a couple of birthdays celebrated at our table. Our mains were cleared and shortly after they brought out a panna cotta with fruit pieces and a sparkler! A quiet rendition of “Happy Birthday” and a few quick photos, then we passed the plate around so we could each have a couple spoonfuls of dessert. The cheesecake had a light mousse texture, a delicious citrus taste, and it was surrounded by sweet fruit.
Service was friendly, highly attentive, and not even a bit snobby. I was really pleased to notice a level of personal service that I rarely experience elsewhere (probs because I don’t eat in many fancy restaurants). The waitstaff are incredibly well-trained, kudos!
Likes: excellent service, a couple of delicious stand-out dishes
Dislikes: closing my eyes to the steep bill
Value for money: sell your soul, but the food and service are fantastic
Overall: would return one day when I’m baller rich
440 Cambridge St
(08) 9287 2700