Old Guildford town has undergone a transformation over recent years, and the places for foodies to explore continue to grow. Jezebelles has been created out of an old bank building and brings a touch of funkiness amid the cottages and heritage decor. Meeting up with a small group of friends on a lazy Sunday afternoon is the perfect time to enjoy the Jezebelle offerings. With a jazz duo playing at the rear of the venue, sun streaming through the windows and comfy chairs to park yourselves in, you get to ruminating that life is pretty darn good. Add a $10 glass of sangria to the mix and all’s right with the world.
The lunch menu comprises plates of Spanish themed tapas which enabled our party of five to sample a range of dishes. The quesadillas with Spanish cured ham, rocket and manchego cheese ($12.90) were everything quesadillas should be; generously filled, crispy outside, and oozing with warm cheese.
Croquetas de setas ($16) were filled with mushroom and labneh and smeared with red pesto. These fried morsels nestling on a bed of pea puree were hot and crunchy and scrumptious.
The service at Jezebelle was uniformly brilliant. Our Italian waiter was a beaming joy; happy to be there, knowledgeable about the menu, and eager to please. The tapas plates were presented at decent intervals so we had time to savour our food and enjoy the experience.
The delicious tiger prawn tacos ($20) were lightly beer battered and served with guacamole and pico de gallo. See those small soft tacos? They weren’t easy to pick up and eat, and looked more like a work of art to be admired. But troopers that we are, we somehow managed to polish them off.
You can’t have too many fried foods; well certainly not when you’re eating a tapas meal. And as long as good quality olive oil is used, those old arteries won’t suffer too much. That’s what I tell myself and it seems to temporarily placate me. Enter the bola de paella ($16), chorizo and prawn paella balls; crispy golden rounds of rice mixed with nibbles of prawn and chorizo, accompanied by saffron aioli.
Garden variety fish and chips is such a hit and miss affair that I am reluctant to order it unless I’m in a dedicated seafood eatery. I’m so glad we took the waiter’s advice and ordered Jezebelle’s version as it was a highlight amongst a slew of highlights. The fish of the day ($18) with patatas bravas, mesclun salad and house made tartare, featured two generous pieces of cod, beer battered and served on a board. The serve of patatas was small but given the serious amount of carbs we’d devoured, this wasn’t an issue. The fish was fresh and the batter crisp; better (and cheaper) than many I’ve sampled locally.
Pork lovers are not forgotten. The pork and prawn cigars ($16) were fried in spring roll wrappers and served with sweet chilli mayo. I didn’t try these but JS and The Prof assured me they were the bees knees. I couldn’t possibly doubt that given the primo food we’d been scoffing.
The ubiquitous salad. The thing we order because we think it will balance out the plates of fried/cheesy/decadent stuff we’ve scoffed. I do love salad actually so ordering it wasn’t a dilemma, but by the time it arrived I was almost at belt-loosening time. Still I had to find room for a few spoons of this colourful concoction, and I was glad I did. The warm salad of pumpkin, sweet potato and red onion ($12) was sensational. With a sprinkling of paprika pepitas, lashings of goats cheese and a tahini dressing, this was one gourmet surprise. I’m just sorry that we couldn’t finish it, but one has to squeeeezzzze in a dessert somewhere.
And now for everybody’s favourite dessert these days – churros ($14). Served with a bowl of dulce de leche, this dessert allowed us to share without being greedy. Dusted in cinnamon and icing sugar, these churro fingers were marshmallow soft inside and crunchy outside. Just the way they should be.
This was my second encounter with Jezebelles and it won’t be my last. The food was superb, the service impeccable and the ambience quirky and fun. Wednesday nights are cocktail nights where every one of their creations is a mere $10. Bargain by Perth standards. I can feel a midweek gathering a coming…
Did I mention this place is on the Entertainment gold card? Just another reason to visit if you’re not already convinced.