Auntie G opened late last year on the premises formerly occupied – for quite some time – by the well-regarded Maya Indian restaurant located in the heart of Fremantle.
The same team are running the new venture, but the decor and menu have both been refreshed. And though Perth offers endless array of east Asian options, quality Indian venues seem relatively thin on the ground (Sauma excepted). As a Brit, I am of course always keen for a curry, and hoped this place would brighten up a wet Friday evening.
The initial signs were promising. A relaxing venue with a cool bar area, it could be equally suitable for a group of mates or (for the amorous among you) a Valentine’s liaison. All the staff were friendly and attentive, and provided useful suggestions as we perused the varied menu.
Auntie G’s kitchen claims to have taken inspiration not only from India’s wide-ranging cuisine, but also the cooking of neighbouring countries. I’ve never seen a steamed dumpling on an Indian menu, and we duly plumped for a couple of “lamb momos”. They were pleasant if unremarkable, but the accompanying tomato dip was certainly above average, and we deployed various other nibbles to ensure it disappeared.
If the dumplings were a bit different, we stuck to the basics when we ordered some onion bhajis. That made it a very pleasant surprise when we found the chefs had elevated the dish into the auntiethesis of mere buffet ballast. Their version had plenty of flavour, without a hint of grease.
A couple more classic choices kept the quality high. Turmeric cured cauliflower arrived dressed with yoghurt, chilli and ginger; a lovely light, clean combination. The goat curry was even better, full of rich flavour with tender meat falling off the bone at the flick of a fork. Recommended.
A tasty roti and some fresh riata acted as a palate cleanser, before the dip proved doubly helpful as my girlfriend tried to extinguish the heat from our final dish. The superbly named “Mother-in-law’s Tongue” featured fat, juicy prawns in a standout spicy sauce. “String hoppers” (think rice vermicelli) were ideal for mopping up, while shredded coconut sambal added a welcome crunch to the bowl.
I got the impression the menu had some proper thought put into it, and that showed in the quality on offer. My fellow diner was also impressed with both her cocktails; indeed, she described one as “a party in a glass”. This again suggested considerable care has gone into Auntie G’s output, as I don’t usually associate – even good – Indian restaurants with a strong drinks selection. One of the other concoctions featured “bacon dust”. Don’t tell me you’re not intrigued.
The restaurant’s blurb promises “home-style dishes to tingle your tastebuds”, and that’s exactly what we received. Visiting relatives can sometimes be a drag, but I’d be very surprised if you regret dropping in on this particular Auntie.
Auntie G (75 – 77 Market St. Fremantle), is open Tuesday – Sunday, 5.30pm ’til late.
Disclaimer: foodie cravings was invited as a guest of Auntie G. See disclosure policy for further details.