Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Sunday 2 August 2009

102 Lincoln St, Highgate
(08) 9228 1759

1. Comfort & Surroundings

Alexander: Lincolns is set out like your funky, eclectic aunt's house: the plates are random and the furniture doesn't match, but every visit yields a new, often delightful, discovery. It may not be as as sleek as some of Perth's other breakfast hotspots but therein lies its charm - don't expect rigidity or staid surroundings when you visit Lincolns. Given the multifarious nature of the venue's furnishings, comfort is a somewhat hit and miss affair. On one visit you might get the comfy bench seat with the cushions; on the next you might be forced to sit on the cramped little stools and coffee tables. And with only a few tables inside, rainy days at Lincolns offer up a bit of a challenge. As it were, Lola secured us a pleasant, outdoors, easterly-facing table on this lovely sunny morning, so there was no cause for discomfort. It gets a 3.5 from me.

Lola: Just a short stroll away from the bustling Beaufort Street, Lincolns is found, as the name suggests, on Lincoln Street, amidst the old houses of the area, creating a homely environment for its patrons. There are plenty of tables inside and outside, although it's slightly cramped indoors, but perhaps that adds to its domestic vibe. I like it. Relaxing there on a Sunday morning makes me want to move in next door and have it become part of my morning routine. Hey, there's a place for sale across the road... I'll give it 4 marks.

2. Service

The staff at Lincolns blend in perfectly with the patchwork-like decor. A bit cool, a bit scruffy, but good at what they do, they're exactly what you'd expect from the urbanite-meets-hipster enclave that is Highgate. You go to the counter, you get a friendly smile and you make a little small talk. You make your order, you walk back to your table and soon your food arrives. No muss, no fuss. A big 4.

I had very minimal contact with the staff but they certainly seemed friendly enough. If anything, it took a while for our dirty dishes to be removed, but that's always better than the premature cleaning of the table. Pretty good! A 3.5.

3. Tastiness

Alexander: As soon as you approach the counter at Lincolns your eyes are in for a treat as they wander longingly over the delectable looking treats on display. And your tastebuds won't miss out either: the food here is pretty tasty. On this particular occasion, I ordered a baked bean toastie. Not very exciting, I hear you say? Well these are homemade beans, topped off with cheese, and all warmed to perfection in toasted fresh white bread. Plus, in what I think is a nice touch, it comes with a side of rocket (which I proceeded to stuff into my toastie as a fresh, slightly bitter distraction from the other heavy flavours). Nice one, Lincolns. It scores a 3.

After almost being tempted by the orange donuts on the counter (advertised as coming with chocolate sauce, mmm) I decided on the porridge with stewed fruit. I have a friend who doesn't believe in ordering porridge when she's out, because she 'can have it at home'. And yes, porridge is one of those homely foods that I grew up eating, so I see her point. But I can cook eggs just as well as I can prepare my oats, and what I love about eating out is being able to order my favourite dishes, but to have them made for me, to get fresh ideas about familiar foods and, ultimately, to have them taste better than when I make them myself. Lincolns served me a bowl of porridge that was an ideal consistency with a delightful selection of stewed fruit and a delicious scattering of brown sugar. I do like my porridge served with a little cold milk on the side, an absent element here, but I'll still award a 3.5.

4. Drinks

Alexander: Lincolns has an impressive drinks menu, with a beverage for whatever takes your fancy. You would expect good coffee from a venue so close to one of Perth's most popular coffee-strips, and I gotta say, they don't do too badly. But my cappuccino on this visit only managed to elicit a lukewarm reaction when I was hoping for a love affair in every sip. I knew I should have gone with the iced chocolate! Oh well, you win some, you lose some, and based on this visit, I can only award a 3 in the drinks category.

Upon arrival I chose to enjoy a chai, made with milk. There were a few options in the chai department and mine had a good amount of spice and came with both honey and cinnamon sugar on the side. Afterwards I enjoyed a ginger tea. It was delivered in a lovely glass which almost made up for the fact that it had the tea bag sitting in it with a pot of hot water served next to it. I'm not sure how I feel about this! On one hand, I expect a pot with nice big tea leaves when I go out. But then again, this tea tasted good so what am I complaining about? Plus, I enjoy my tea weak and receiving my tea bag and hot water at Lincolns meant I could brew it to the perfect strength. Okay I've decided it's a good thing (but only because the bag was not submerged in the pot on arrival), a 4 here.

5. Fiscal Matters

Lincolns prides itself on using the best possible ingredients in its food. And, unsurprisingly, that commitment to quality does tend to have a negative impact on the price tags attached to its menu items. Is it just me, or do the prices seem to have crept up lately? Perhaps it's a by-product of climate change or the GFC? Or perhaps just the fact that Lincolns can get away with it? Don't get me wrong, there are some economical options, but unfortunately I can't say that the menu, as a whole, exudes that "value for money" quality. I'm giving it a 3.

My dish was pretty decently priced under $10, though I thought some of the other options were a little steep. I guess they are, once again, prices we are used to seeing in Perth and so I'll have to award a 3 as well.

The verdict...

Comfort & Surroundings: 7.5/10
Service: 7.5/10
Tastiness: 6.5/10
Drinks: 7/10
Fiscal Matters: 6/10
TOTAL: 34.5/50

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