Plan the perfect picnic in Subiaco
It’s that time of year when thoughts turn to dusting off the picnic basket, assembling some delicious tucker and making a day of it in one of Subi’s beautiful parks.
First, gather your goodies.
There’s no point going to the trouble of planning a picnic if all you’ve got it in the fridge are some ancient olives, plastic cheese and depressed-looking ham. Take the opportunity to create a picnic spread that Nigella would be proud of. Luckily, Subiaco has some brilliant foodie emporiums which should provide plenty of inspiration.
85 Rokeby Road, Subiaco
The passion project of two chefs – Paolo and Aimee Butto – Urban Soul Foods have opened an even bigger store than their first incarnation on Rokeby Road, amplifying its already impressive claim to be foodie central in Subiaco. They’re masters at putting together those super-popular sharing boards so beloved of Instagram. Give them the nod, and you’ll be the envy of your picnic pals with delicious cheeses, charcuterie, dips and crackers. Homemade baked treats (Aimee’s speciality), gourmet groceries, pre-made pizzas, quiches and frittatas will make your picnic basket the best dressed in town.
169 Rokeby Road, Subiaco
A little further along Rokeby Road, you’ll find an old school providore (a posh way of saying it’s a shop that stocks provisions). Simon Johnson Providore is home to some extra special ingredients which, paired with some fresh bread from one of the local bakeries, would just be our idea of heaven on a paper plate. We love their caviar collection and unusual cheeses, as well as super smoky Woodbridge Smoked Salmon. They’re also pretty good at making delicious baked goods – check out their flaky pastry feta and spinach pie with Will Studd Cheese’s Aphrodite feta and Le Conquerant butter as star ingredients. Add a glass of something crisp and cold and you’ve yourself a gold star lunch on the grass.
20/21 55 Salvado Road, Subiaco
If a picnic packed with fresh produce is your jam, then head to Growers Lane, the Station St Markets’ very own store. You’ll find fruit and veg, deli goods, freshly baked bread and pastries as well as takeaway meals (try the beef and cheddar empanadas, the perfect hand-held snack). If you’re planning ahead for your picnic, why not buy some of the new season kipfler potatoes and whip up a delicious potato salad to serve alongside some fresh carved ham? Their Kensington mangoes are looking extra delicious at the moment too – we recommend eating them until the juice drips onto your picnic blanket.
Subiaco Primary School, 271 Bagot Road
Every Saturday, between 8am and noon, join the throngs around the 80 or so stalls and create your own bespoke picnic. Pick up some freshly squeezed juice, a punnet or six of strawberries and blueberries, and then grab a baguette or two from Baguette Me Not. Froggy Food has charcuterie and condiments inspired by our Gallic friends while Maison Saint Honore is a must-stop stall for a kaleidoscope of macarons and pastries. You might need to plan a whole weekend of picnics at this rate...
Picnic basket all packed? Now it’s time to choose your spot
Subiaco Arts Centre, Hamersley Road, Subiaco
If you’re picnicking with kids, then this is a good choice with plenty of shady spots and a nature play park complete with monkey bars, ropes and river rocks to clamber over. An added advantage is the cutest little coffee spot in Subiaco – The Hole in the Wall. We’re all in favour of a coffee refuelling station when all that playing in the great outdoors takes its toll.
Subiaco Centro, Subiaco
This is a lovely spot which has had a bit of a makeover, with a redeveloped play space, lots of trees, a lake with a fountain, BBQs and picnic benches. It’s not huge but if it’s just you, your mates and a picnic blanket, we think you’d be hard pressed to find a nicer spot on a sunny spring day, with a little stream running into the lake adding to the whole country-fied vibe.
Roberts Road, Subiaco
Full disclosure – this is my favourite Subiaco green space. I just love the graceful line of trees leading the eye down from Roberts Road to a playpark in the middle. Close to West Leederville’s train station, it’s a great place to meet up with friends who might be meeting you from other ‘burbs. It’s another park too that’s great for kids – the fully enclosed tree walk before exiting via a slide is a big hit. It’s unusual too in that there are multi-sensory things to play with including a giant upright xylophone and jungle drums. If you’ve come without rug rats in tow, don’t worry – there are plenty of places away from the kid-friendly spaces to be all grown up and gourmet on your rug.
Think beautifully manicured green lawns, a tree-lined lake, black swans and ducks - Lake Jualbup’s park is the pretty much the Perth definition of the best place for a picnic. As well as a brilliant, shaded play park area which will test the most determined toddler, there are some picnic tables as well as a gazebo if you’re hosting a slightly more formal get-together. Jualbup means ‘a place where water rises in the season of spring’ – so we’d say it’s the perfect time to visit.