Petition, Perth

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country right now: Petition, Perth.

Perth's past meets its present at the State Buildings, the new identity of the rebooted and restored Treasury buildings. While the plan is to open the precinct in stages - Como The Treasury, Australia's first Como hotel, begins welcoming guests this week while David Thompson's equally anticipated Long Chim opens next month - one of its first public offerings is Petition, a smart-casual trio encompassing restaurant, well-stocked enoteca and craft-beer bar.

While each venue sports its own menu, the eating is best at the airy dining room where chef Jesse Blake and his brigade operate. Informed by his time at Cumulus Inc (well-travelled eaters might notice the presence of "comestibles" on the menu), Blake's opening dishes are notable for their subtle inventiveness. Tender curls of squid and an ink-stained buckwheat risotto is a smart pairing, while beef tartare gets lightened with thickly cut radish, sesame seeds and a dab of sour cream. Then there's the kitchen's winning pea soup remix - a comforting combo starring braised turnips, peas, ham and addictively savoury parmesan crumbs.

Coupled with bright-eyed service and nifty wine choices, Petition makes a fine introduction to the city's newest food and drink emporium.

Petition, 28 Barrack St (cnr Barrack St & St Georges Tce), Perth, WA, (08) 6168 7771. Open Mon-Fri 7am-midnight, Sat-Sun 8am-midnight.

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