la veen coffee
by Mei Leong
Brioche, aioli and eggs, with candied serrano ham. So, so rich, but so, so good.
Located on the corner of King Street and Wellington, La Veen is all dark wood and handsome looks. With a Synesso machine as the crown jewel, it does coffee well, but the food might even be better. So much better, that this is the rare instance where the horribly bad service was actually triumphed by the food. While the adage of once bitten twice shy comes to mind, the food (and coffee) is just too good to pass up. But saying that, it’ll probably be a while before we return.
The Synesso is put to good use, pushing out coffee that’s fruity with a deep, delicious roast. The grape, melon and lemon juice was just as good as the coffee. Freshly pressed, it’s icy cold with a strong grape flavour that got more refreshing with every sip.
Seriously does that bread look like brioche? (No.) Bread with butter and two poached eggs, $9.50.
When my dish arrived, it was different to what I expected. Really different. In fact, when the waitress read my receipt she confirmed in no uncertain terms that this was indeed the brioche and jamon breakfast, and pointed to the three slices of not-brioche-looking bread as proof. With suspicions doused, I did my best to the disappointing dish and was about halfway when my actual order of brioche in all it’s jamon glory arrived.
(Anyway, from the half the dish I did eat, it was excellent. The bread – though not brioche – was milky, crusty and sweet. With lashings of butter you couldn’t go wrong with it.)
Serrano jerky, brioche and aioli with poached eggs, $14.
Mmm poached eggs.
However, the brioche, eggs and serrano ham were bloody fantastic. Golden slices of butter laden brioche were topped with jiggling, slow poached eggs and the best aioli I’ve had in a long time. Spiked with what looked like paprika, the aioli was a garlicky, silken foil. The egg was cooked to minimal perfection and when burst, flowed over the brioche like a sexy, voluptuous model. The candied – yes candied – serrano jerky added a one-two punch of umami and sweet saltiness.
Would I order this again in a heartbeat? Yes, yes I would.
Pressed pork belly with pear and rosti, $19.50.
However the stuff up with the poached eggs was – relatively – not bad when compared to K’s dish. The pressed pork belly took a whole forty minutes to arrive and after I pestered the staff.
Unfortunately the pork belly was dry and overcooked, with a chewy rind to boot. However the rest of the dish was excellent. Covered in caramelised, super crunchy wrinkles, the crispy rosti had a warm, soft heart of grated potato. The poached pears were spoon tender, contrasted by astringent drops of what I assume to be raspberry sauce. Too bad the pork was overcooked.
From the concept to the food, this place has so much potential it hurts. Considering the cafe was nowhere near full, we obviously caught the kitchen on a bad day. I absolutely adore the coffee and the food (my love for brioche knows no bounds) so perhaps we’ll be back – someday. When King’s Square opens, no doubt this cafe will have one of the best people watching spots in the CBD.
La Veen Coffee
90 King Street, Perth
T: (08) 9321 1188
Mon – Fri 7am – 4pm, Sat 8am – 4pm, Sun 10am – 3pm
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