It had been more than two years since my last visit to Duende – always a nice spot for tapas, a lively atmosphere and an extensive drinks menu. It is on the junction of Carr Place and Newcastle Street, just off the main Oxford Street strip, but still in a lively position.
Our waitress was very knowledgeable, and gave good advice on wine, drinks and the food and portion sizes.
Our first dish to arrive was a sharing plate of longaniza, chorizo, jamon Serrano, caperberries and pickled chillis with bread and olive oil. Everything on the plate was tasty and good quality – the caperberries added a wonderful savoury piquancy.
Next we chose a ceviche of white fish with orange and grapefruit jelly with ribbons of cucumber, radish and aioli. Again very good quality and a plate of nice fresh flavours.
Then we had a salad of baby cos lettuce with roasted cauliflower, manchego and chorizo crumb. An unusual dish but a nice combination of flavours that went well together.
Finally we chose whitebait and patatas bravas. Both simple plates but extremely well executed. The whitebait were plentiful, crispy and served with a chipotle aioli.
The patatas were cooked traditionally with paprika and smoked tomato aioli. Absolutely delicious, perfectly crispy with just the right amount of spice.
This visit to Duende proved that the standard has got better and better. Always a favourite, it is now one of Perth’s finest tapas eateries, producing quality food cooked with thought and precision. I can’t wait for the next visit.