My French wife and I hosted two Parisians who were seeking a fine dining experience in the western Antipodes. After consulting tripadvisor they chose Petite Mort- the name appealed to the Frenchman.
We arrived on a weekday at 7pm. There were few occupied tables. So when we realised that two chairs and one bench were going to be uncomfortable we were able to be moved to a standard table.
We chose the Degustation Menu. Wikipedia defines dégustation as, “a careful, appreciative sampling of small portions of all of a chef's signature dishes in one sitting”.
At Petite Mort this consists of 9 courses. The pork belly, confit duck thigh, beef fillet Bernaise (sic) and the Death by Chocolate were well cooked and presented and very tasty. The hypercritical Parisians waxed lyrical about the barramundi.
I was introduced to two new tastes: wasabi icecream as an accompaniment to the smoked salmon and ginger water topped with sparkling apple served as a palate cleanser.
Bread is not served and I expected to be hungry at the end of the meal. The large complimentary serving of macaroons, madeleines and chocolate truffles at the end of the degustation ensured that I wasn’t.
By 7.30pm the restaurant was full. The Edith Piaf songs could no longer be heard. Nor could I hear my companions or the waitress. Like most Perth restaurants the walls are brick, the floor wood and the festive patrons, loud. I go out to eat and talk with friends and acquaintances. The Parisians told me that good French eating places are whisper quiet because fine eating is a serious business requiring the full use of all their senses. Oh to find such a civilised place in WA.
There is a ‘private dining room’ that has soft surroundings and a carpet resulting in more tolerable noise levels.
The wait staff are willing and the service prompt. But they all looked harassed and rushed about with their feet stomping on the floor and adding to the ambient noise. They sometimes ran into each other. This added to the unrelaxed atmosphere. It is possible for busy staff to glide about, look less stressed and be just as, or probably, even more efficient.
I will go back. But next time I will book into the ‘private dining room’ and order three or four dishes from the a la carte menu. And I will hope that I can converse with my companions.
Food 9/10 Service 7/10 Ambience 2/10
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