Oh Christmas. When did your bright baubles lose their sheen? It can feel a jolly lot like a North Korean hard labour camp some years; all that faux fawning over cruddy Kris Kringle gifts, sweating over a rapidly drying bird, gagging on Aunty Susie’s soggy prawn cocktails and forcing a titter while Uncle Joe relays some cock n’ bull story in his Red Dot Santa suit. Perhaps it’s time to shake things up. We’re thinking less work, more sparkle this year—scrap the Kringles, break aunty Susie’s heart and exit the compound for a stress-free feast.
Here are the best places to have Christmas Day lunch in Perth.
Best Line-Up | Public House
Oh my. Ceviche with coriander and lime? Agave nectar lamb ribs with lemon and oregano? Southern fried chicken wings with chilli and pepper? Dirty granny cider pork with guava and sour apples? WE’RE LOSING OUR SHIZ. Public House has an absolute cracker of a Christmas menu this year, complete with veteran dishes given a sexy Latin twist. Forget leathery sliced lamb and think 16-hour smoked lamb shoulder with pico de gallo and pickled onions instead. Replace traditional bird with anticucho chicken with crispy skin, while roast veg and taters make way for Peruvian potato salad and citrus slaw. And don’t even get us started on the pineapple carpaccio and fried banana for dessert or we may be arrested for being a public nuisance. Joy to the world.
The damage: $130 for adults, $50 for kids aged 5-12. Includes house beer, wine and soft drinks.
Best Pub Grub | The Hyde Park Hotel
The Hyde Park Hotel is far from the sweaty, Nobby-nutty watering hole of old. It’s got a hip beer garden with good vibrations and a solid kitchen cranking out decent fare. This year’s Christmas buffet has got it goin’ on. Oysters in lime sauce, treacle of smoked salmon, honey leg ham and Aunty’s Susie’s fave staple, prawn cocktail, are on the cold buffet. Meanwhile, the hot buffet will be packed with rosemary and garlic infused lamb, marmalade and clove glazed roast turkey, buttered corn cob, cauliflower cheese and roast veg. Firm faves Chrissy pud, pavlova and choc truffles will round out proceedings.
The damage: $80 for adults, $25 for kids aged 4-12.
Best Splurge | Nobu Perth
OK, so Aunty Susie may freak ("oh my gawd, where’s the Ingham?”), but we’re swooning for Nobu’s Omakase Lunch. There’s a stellar line-up of seven heavenly courses, including King George whiting tiradito, sashimi salad with tarragon miso mayo, scallop and prawn gyoza, wagyu steak, sushi nigiri and somen noodle soup. An epic Nobu festive dessert will be the epilogue of this glorious feast. Hark the herald angels sing KONICHIWAAAAAAAAA.
The damage: $170 per person, including a glass of Veuve Clicquot.
Best Chilled-Out Brewery Vibes | Elmar's In The Valley
Live tunes, a three-hour beverage package and lush green grass to roly poly on. Now you’re talking. Elmar’s in the Valley is puttin’ the chill back into Christmas this year with laidback brewery vibes and a European inspired banquet featuring three colossal buffets and a carving station. Giddy up! Highlights include poached whole salmon, turkey and venison terrine, freshly shucked oysters and an epic glazed ham with sweet-spiced mustard and Shiraz jus. Something tells me it’s not going to be a silent night, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.
The damage: $180 for adults, $120 for kids aged 16-17, $80 for kids aged 11-15 and $60 for kids aged 6-10. Includes a three-hour beverage package.
Most Interesting Menu | The Aviary
We salute you, The Aviary. You have a fangin’ rooftop bar, a restaurant that doubles as a birdcage and the smarts to include peking duck on your Christmas day lunch menu. *wipes tear. We’re loving this St Nick-Asian fusion feast, from the green tea smoked salmon and slipper lobster yellow curry to the vegie rending and aforementioned almighty Peking roast duck. For dessert you can scoff a five spice apple pie, chow down on cherries or demolish Christmas pud with brandy anglaise. Don’t forget to bring your quackers.
The damage: $140 for adults, $70 for kids aged 13-17 and $50 for kids aged 5-12. Includes house wine, beer and soft drink.
Best Brekkie n’ Swim Combo | Indiana Teahouse
Join the tourists for a bangin’ brekkie at Indiana Teahouse. Yes, really. Come all ye faithful and stuff yourself with crispy bacon, barbecued salmon, bratwurst chipolatas, woodfired chorizo and slow roasted herb tomatoes, plus continental faves fresh baked danishes, croissants, pancakes, fresh fruit and granola. Comes with a bonus billion-dollar view of the cerulean sea, plus a free body wave slam in the swell.
The damage: $45 for adults, $25 for kids aged 5-12.
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Image credit: The Aviary