The Yard, Fremantle Markets

Unlike Perth’s CBD buildings, most of which have been torn down, built and torn down again, Fremantle has kept most of its heritage buildings giving it character unto its own. New age shops, club houses (what is the Buffalo Club anyway?) and art galleries inhabit the old facades with their own kind of style.

Sticking my head into random shops, flicking through coffee table books and browsing aisle upon aisles of stuff are just some of the things I like to do in the port city. In fact, there are simply so many things to see and do, that I like to be self indulgent and go alone. With camera in hand and appetite at the ready, here’s where I always find myself, accompanied or not, with a couple of new favourites thrown in for good measure.

(Directory’s at the end of the post.)



The Kakulas Sister shop – as you can see from the ceiling, it’s housed in the hallway of the old Princess Theatre


Kakulas Sister

To say I adore this shop would be an understatement. Every visit is marred by a joyful sack of goodies. If you look between the shelves, it’s a goldmine of ingredients and extremely tempting treats. Chipotle chillies, annatto seeds and Dutch cocoa are good buys – but what I come here for are the buttons of dark Belgian chocolate and almond meal (for baking macarons). Sacks of every imaginable flour, bean and grain is housed in this relatively small shop. There are Italian dolce sweets in the fridge, New Norcia bread behind the counter and lots of chocolates to buy and try.

Countless visits later and I still love trawling through the shop with a fine tooth comb (which I think drives K crazy).




Kakulas Sister also has a huge store in Nollamara (a gem in the rough for sure) selling almost the same stock, though I think the Freo shop has more Spanish and Mexican stuff.


Gift of Taste Polish Donuts


Hot donut with sweet sourish jam.

Like a yellow beacon, the donut van is parked at the lonely end of the pedestrian mall (close to the Visitor Centre and Myer). The donuts are fried to order, so they are absolutely piping hot and crisp when handed through the narrow window. The spongy dough is spiked with a sour sweet jam, cutting through the grease quite nicely. These aren’t the best donuts in the world nor are they the worst. But when I find a van that makes hot jam donuts (in Perth, no less) I can’t help being happy.




The Yard at Fremantle Markets

Skip the tourist drag that is the main hall and take the alleyway shortcut straight into the yard. Cooled by the heritage roof, the yard’s patchwork of produce never fails to impress. They always have the latest in seasonal fruit – I come for bargain mangoes, free range eggs and to stare at the strangest things – like ostrich eggs. You can often taste test the fruit and fierce competition means prices are quite reasonable considering the tourist location. The vendors are really friendly and are itching to make sales, so shop around.

One tip: during strawberry season some of the vendors sell export strawberries. These are gorgeous, they look plastic fantastic and they have to be seen to be believed. A must for strawberry lovers.

If you are itching to shuck oysters, Westralian Seafoods are one of the few places selling whole, in the shell oysters for reasonable prices. Plus they always have extra lively marron and crayfish in their tanks. I was tempted to buy a lobster but was too shy to ask if they would kill a lobster to order… (I’m a wimp…)


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Left: Ostrich eggs for the omelette fanatics. Right: Fresh oysters, scrubbed and ready to shuck.

The Mousetrap’s fridge always has something rare to spend your money on (I still think back fondly on that jar of real clotted cream). Comte, gorgonzola and roquefort are good buys and are all cut from the wheel. A nice idea would be buy some cheese, grab a baguette from Abhi’s or Lawley’s, a couple of cupcakes and have a picnic somewhere. Valentine’s Day is coming up isn’t it?



The Mousetrap.


Dosukoi serves the best ramen in Perth. Go for No. 1 (original) or No. 6 (chicken karaage).

Otherwise for lunch, head into the hall for a bowl of Dosukoi’s ramen. And if you are feeling really indulgent, finish off with a crepe from Michele’s (the chocolate mousse crepe is quite heavenly).



It’s tiiiiny on the inside, so join the queue and grab one to go.

Moore & Moore

Attached to a gallery, this place is so artfully groovy it almost hurts! (Definitely too cool for me.) The smell of food lingers from the small kitchen, down the corridor, past the cornucopia of antiques/junk and into the outdoor space. A nice place to be on a cool summer’s day (especially on the new alfresco area), cradling a cup of half decent coffee. I like this trend of coffee shop cum art gallery, it seems like a good way to use empty space.




There’s another similar concept just around the corner called Origins. The front is a bare bones cafe, the back a plain room with art hangings. I think it’s a pop-up business so it might not be there for long. Worth a look if you can catch it.

Because I always save the best for last (figuratively and literally) … and because I luuuurve bookshops…



It’s hard to leave a plush armchairs and books. Maybe for a coffee though…

New Edition Bookshop

It’s not a comprehensive bookshop, but it’s close. You’d be hard pressed to find better in this city. If a bookshop has character, this one has it, from the Persian carpets to the high ceilings. I come in here for one section specifically – you guessed it – the cookbooks!

Though useful, recipes aren’t exactly why I buy cookbooks. Instead, they’re bought for the dreamy fantasies: cooking from memories of exotic travels, or within a kitchen complete with pyro lytic oven and sous vide machine. And maybe, just maybe, Guilliame Brahimi as my sous chef (ahem).

(Guilliame Brahimi’s Food for Friends, Christine Manfield’s Tasting India and Alain Ducasse’s J’aime Paris are already on the wish list.)

There is just one last thing I want to share about New Edition….



Soy flat white at the Grumpy Sailor. That cinnamon shortbread cookie was delicious, by the way.

Grumpy Sailor

They have a itsy bitsy cafe too! And they make a decent coffee (and little bites to go with). You can even take the coffee into the bookshop – crazy right? Collector teaspoons, shortbread and great caffeine. This is the beginning of a long, beautiful friendship.



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So that’s it! I’m sure there are more gems to be found in Freo… I’d love to find more places to hang out. What/where are your favourite spots in Freo?


Kakulas Sister
31 Market St, Fremantle WA 6160
T: (08) 9430 4445

Gift of Taste Polish Donuts (the yellow donut van)
Not sure if the van is always in Freo, but it was parked outside the visitors centre, near Myer.
High Street Mall cnr Adelaide St, Fremantle WA 6160

The Yard at Fremantle Markets
This includes Westralian Seafoods, the fruit & veg stands, Lawley’s, Abhi’s, The Mousetrap and many other ready to eat food stalls. Note that the Yard is open on Fridays too.
Corner of Henderson St & South Tce, Fremantle WA 6160
T: (08) 9335 2515

Dosukoi Japanese Noodle & Bubble Tea
Located in the main hall of Fremantle Markets
Stall No. 7, Fremantle Markets, Cnr Henderson St & South Tce, Fremantle 6160 WA.

Michele’s Crepe Suzette
Located in the main hall of Fremantle Markets
Stall No. 7, Fremantle Markets, Cnr Henderson St & South Tce, Fremantle 6160 WA.
Michele's Crepe Suzette on Urbanspoon

Moore & Moore 
46 Henry St, Fremantle 6160 WA.
T: (08) 9335 8825

Moore & Moore on Urbanspoon

Origins (Pop up coffee shop, relocating at the end of March 2012.)
101 High Street, Fremantle 6160 WA
The gallery’s website:

New Edition Bookshop
82 High Street, Fremantle WA 6160
T: (08) 9335 2383

The Grumpy Sailor
82 High Street, Fremantle WA 6160
T: (08) 9335 2383

The Grumpy Sailor on Urbanspoon

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  1. food sponge

    The New Edition Bookshop has such a comfortable, welcoming atmosphere doesn’t it?
    I also like Remedy across the road, The Home Provedore around the corner, Taka’s Kitchen in Old Shanghai, B&M Store on High Street & Store on Market Street.

  2. mei

    food sponge – I’ll have to take a squiz and B&M! :D :D I love Home Provedore too, knew I left something out! Their range of cloches and cupcake stands are to die for. <3

    Amy – Had no idea the van did stops in the city! Oh yeah churros are the bomb. Have you seen the 16 INCH CHURRO van around? Those are amazing. Bigger is better, so they say. ;)

    Bryt – Yep definitely take a look at Kakulas Sisters. Rosa’s in Mt Hawthorn is pretty good too – she carries a decent range of cured meats… plus Inca Cola! Thanks for dropping by :)

  3. Amy

    Always wondered about this donut van. I saw it being displayed every Friday in Forrest Chase, Perth City every Friday evening. But still I prefer Churros :)

  4. Bryt

    oooo, I’m on a big Spanish recipe binge atm. Looks like Kakulas Sister should be my next stop :)
    And ostrich eggs? So cool :P

  5. Mary

    Great post. I like Remedy across the road, The Home Provedore around the corner, Taka’s Kitchen in Old Shanghai, B&M Store on High Street & Store on Market Street.

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