We’d been to Cantina 663 about 3 times before, including one of our birthdays last year. Cantina 663 presents itself as a trendy, Spanish-inspired restaurant, with meals that sit fairly squarely in the middle of the wank, price, taste, size spectrum. In other words, the meals appeal with ingredients you know, done in a slightly different way, in amounts that are sufficient but not entirely-filling, for a cost that won’t break the bank. Throw in some interesting, but possibly overpriced entrees, and a full complement of wines (many drawing on the Spanish theme) and you have an interesting place to dine. What’s more, it does a roaring coffee and weekend breakfast/lunch trade.
In accordance with our usual style, Storm and I decided to order a couple of entrees and two meals and split them. So to the meal.
duck liver parfait, onion jam, char grilled bread ($15)
stuffed piquillo peppers, eggplant, goats cheese, hazelnut crumb ($15)
plantaganet pork cutlet, artichoke slaw, smoked apple ($33.5)
grass fed veal rump, confit leek, roast potato, capers ($31.5)
Drinks: Sons of Eden 2009 Grenach Shiraz Mourvèdre (Storm – $10 ish)
Alhambra Reserve Especial (6.4% – $9.5)
Total – around $120
Summary: The meal was nice, if not mind-blowing. The parfait was creamy and tasty and the piquillo peppers were both delicious and well presented. The pork cutlet was ample (sliced, which I thought a tad odd) and accompanied by a tasty coleslaw, some smoked apple pieces, and an unidentifiable morsel of food (may have been artichoke experienced like never before). The veal was cooked quite rare and cut into small morsels; a few small chat potatoes accompanied a morsel or two of leek and it was served was in a bowl with a dash of broth (with capers). Despite the looks we received when asking for a spoon, the broth was certainly worth savouring. Using the classic ‘would I work x hours to enjoy this?’ the answer is both yes and no. I feel it’s both a place that warrants a special occasion, but could be bested for a casual friday night dinner. If the logic sounds odd, it probably is.
Cantina 663 changes its menu once every couple of weeks (always hovering in the same gastronomic neighbourhood) and was recently (supposedly) ranked 83# in the top 150 Perth Restaurants. Apparently, it’s quite fancied by the blogging sophisticates, with a rating of 81% on Urbanspoon. Either way, I could’ve celebrated my birthday with Storm at a taco stand and it would’ve been lovely.
So I’ll leave my first 30×30 there…