Summer is well and truly upon us and with the unrelenting heat bearing down you’ll want to find a place to cool off. Treat your tastebuds and refresh yourself from the inside out with a cool drink or icey treat from one of Perth’s many delectable eateries.
Walking around the City of Perth I soon discovered just how many wonderful places there are to sample and enjoy.
There are old favourites cafes, cute and quirky nooks and streets of hidden gems.
While the good old-fashioned ice coffees and spearmint milkshakes are readily available when it comes to cool summer treats for 2016 it’s all about the simple cold brew coffees as well as more eccentric flavour varieties.
Max + Sons
Situated in Perth City’s freshest dining precinct Globe Lane, or 140 William Street, Max + Sons is bright little café and the perfect place in this thriving hub to grab a coffee on the go or stay for a chat.
If you’re craving that coffee kick but the stinking hot temperatures have you desperate for an alternative to the toasty beverage then swap your regular cup of joe for a revitalising cold brew.
This cold coffee option is rising in popularity all around the city and Max + Sons provide a great take away or dine in option for $5.
Because cold brew involves steeping coffee grounds in cold water and leaving it to infuse for long periods of time there is some bitterness associated with the flavour of cold brew.
Max + Sons’ cold brew wasn’t overpowering in terms of coffee strength and although there was a little bitter aftertaste it was a mostly smooth and refreshing.
For the tea drinker Max + Sons have their home made iced Yerba Maté tea for $.4.50.
A caffeine free, Brazilian medicinal tea with lovely subtle flavours, the Yerba Maté is easy to drink with light flavours that provide a nice hydrating alternative to water.
In addition, the café sells small glass bottles of their house made juices for $8.
Juices vary each day but there are normally a handful of flavours to choose from including a green juice, summer fruits, watermelon, orange/apple/turmeric and beetroot/apple/ginger.
Location: Shop 23, 140 William Street Perth
Open: Monday-Friday 6.30am-4pm and Saturday 9am-4pm
There were several things that stood out to be about this sweet little place.
The first was the location. I had never before noticed this café sitting opposite Jamie’s Italian on William Street.
With only small signage facing the street, the café sits tucked away with its entrance a little corridor that leads to a courtyard of tables and chairs.
The second thing was the friendliness of the staff who all clearly held such a delightful passion for the job.
They eagerly explained the differences between cold brew and cold drip coffee and gave advice on the best ways to make both.
Thirdly Willie Wagtail’s cold coffee menu is as extensive as your own imagination. By that I mean if you can think something up the staff here are prepared, and excited, to make it happen for you.
On their written menu are iced long blacks, iced chais, iced chocolates and iced teas.
Enticed by the varied menu I sampled a few of their exotic delights including the Ethiopia di Bello, a milk chocolate, strawberry and plum cold drip.
This iced coffee was silky smooth, full of flavour and reminiscent of a liquor. Perfect for those who like striking flavours, it had a much more refined taste than that of a cold brew.
Next was their iced long black of the dark chocolate and date variety. The coffee was quite strong and would be perfect for someone seeking a cool sharp coffee hit.
I also sampled their much lighter cold brew mixed with sparkling water on ice, colourfully named the Willie Tingle.
All cold drips, brews and iced long blacks are $4 for a small or $4.50 for a larger size.
There’s even an assortment of cold drip devices on display to view and purchase to make your own concoctions at home.
Location: 131 William Street
Open: Monday-Friday 6.30am-4pm
One of my favourite places to dine, Moana Coffee served up the goods in the iced delights department on a sweltering day.
Tucked away above Hay Street mall, this charming little café is a hidden gem inside the renovated Moana Chambers building.
For the tea drinker Moana has a green sweet treat in the form of iced matcha for $5.50.
The best thing about this milky drink is while it tastes deliciously sweet there is no added sugar. It’s simply the delightful taste of the infused tea.
Their homemade iced orange pekoe tea is a wonderful bargain on a hot day at $2.50.
My personal favourite was the iced London fog ($4.50). Essentially a cold version of a white Earl Grey tea, this drink has beautiful fruity and floral aromatic flavours.
Moana’s cold brew comes served in cute little 200ml glass bottles for $5.50 each.
There is a great selection of flavours to choose from including, Sparkling Lime and Ginger, Almond Milk and Maple and Classic Sparkling Orange.
There is also a larger 500ml bottle of cold brew concentrate available.
I sampled the Sparkling Lime and Ginger and found the addition of the sparkling flavour to give the coffee more of a hydrating feel.
The ginger flavour is what hits you on the first sip, followed by the kick of the coffee in the aftertaste.
It’s handy to know that if you bring the bottle back on your next visit you’ll get a 50 cent discount off your next cold brew.
Location: Upstairs in the Moana Chambers building at 618 Hay Street
Open: Monday-Friday 7am-4pm, Saturday 10am-3pm and Sunday 11am-4pm
For a truly unique iced dessert experience head to Little Angel at the bottom of the Exchange Tower in Perth’s CBD.
The only place in Perth to serve liquid nitrogen affogatos, known as their Nitro Affogatto, Little Angel provides an experience for all the senses.
It takes about five minutes to prepare the dessert and I would highly recommend watching it being made.
It’s exciting to watch as the barista dons gloves and glasses and carefully pours the liquid nitrogen with the gas pouring out everywhere. It looks more like a cool science experiment than food.
As recommended by the staff, and confirmed by my experience, the best way to eat the dessert is to first sample the gelato and then add the coffee to taste.
The pandan and coconut gelato was extremely smooth as a result of the liquid nitrogen and the 5 Senses Coffee was the perfect accompaniment.
It is worth trying each bit separately and then together as it brings out many flavours.
Coming in at $8 each, the price will seem steep if you are only after a coffee, but very reasonable for a coffee and an ice cream.
Currently on their menu, Little Angel have the popular pandan and coconut flavour, along with hot buttered popcorn, and their new cookies and cream flavour.
Location: Ground Floor Exchange Tower, 2 The Esplanade
Open: Monday-Thursday 6.30am-3.30pm and Friday 6.30am-3pm
If there were ever a place in Perth for an elaborate drink, this would be it.
Babooshka Bar rose to fame on the Perth food scene for serving one of the most ostentatious milkshakes (or rather ‘freakshakes’) this city’s ever seen.
A triple-donut, chocolate-coated bacon shake is their signature masterpiece for $20.
For those of us less daring, but still eager for something more than the old vanilla milkshake, they serve up a unique range of gourmet shakes.
Starting at $10 each is the Fruitloop and Marshmallow milkshake and their Golden Gaytime shake and for $15 you can replace a meal with their Pancake, Milo and Maple Syrup shake.
In preparation for sampling the pancake shake I passed on lunch, a move that proved to be wise.
It takes five to ten minutes to make each milkshake, as the place is popular, with several people ordering the donut and bacon delight during my visit.
As a drink and meal all rolled into one I wasn’t sure how to begin on the pancake shake, even the boss admitted that “no-one really knows” how to tackle it.
All I can say is be sure to grab some cutlery and plenty of serviettes, as this is one messy drink.
The ice cream, maple syrup and milo makes for a great combination, and hidden under the pancakes is a stack of whipped cream to top off the milkshake.
The first sip brings with it all the maple syrup drizzled through the straw, giving you a quick sugar hit.
After enjoying this huge treat, clear your schedule because you’re going to want to submerge into the food coma that follows.
Location: Arcade 189, 7/189 William Street
Open: Monday-Friday 7am-3pm and Saturday-Sunday 9am-2pm
I am yet to make it to every great iced drink place in the City of Perth, so here are some that I think are still worth a visit.
From peanut butter smoothies to orange infused cold drips, this little café by Perth’s museum has it all in a charming setting.
Location: 117 Grand Lane, Perth
Open: Monday-Friday 7am-3pm and Saturday 8am-2pm
La Veen Coffee and Kitchen
La Veen recently announced an exciting new addition to their menu, their own coffee granita.
This drink will be sure to keep you cool all summer long.
Location: 90 King Street, Perth
Open: Monday-Wednesday 7am-3pm, Thursday-Friday 7am-4pm, Saturday 8am-4pm and Sunday 9am-3pm
Utopia Bubble Tea
For the widest selection of iced tea flavours anywhere, you can’t go past Utopia Bubble Tea.
With sweet fruity teas, traditional milk based flavours and a range of toppings and jellies to suck up that thick straw there’s plenty for all tastebuds.
Location: 109 James Street, Northbridge
Open: Sunday-Thursday 11.30am-11pm, Friday 11.30am-1am and Saturday 11.30am-2am