Restaurant Reviews

El Público

El Público

El Público

511 Beaufort St Highgate, Perth, WA


Five years after opening its doors, this spirited bar-restaurant remains Australia’s benchmark for Mexican food. Or should we say “Mexican” food? While opening chef Sam Ward made his name by championing a traditional approach, his successor Tommy Payne has put his own twist on the menu and he isn’t afraid to use poetic license in the kitchen. The aguachile is a punchy combination of lightly cured kingfish, mezcal and watermelon sprinkled with coconut dust. Smoked chicken wings in a satay-esque peanut mole taste like the sort of thing you’d find in an Asian food court in Oaxaca, but chime perfectly with El Público’s style, as does the mango and coconut trifle in a jar. Despite the change of chef, some things remain the same. The soundtrack rocks, tacos produced with house-made tortillas are as essential as ever, and chipper staff and a mighty drinks list (tequila, beer, cocktails!) are deeply conducive to good times. Bring a posse and party on.


0418 187 708



Bookings recommended


  • Licensed

  • Bar

  • Wheelchair Access

  • Outdoor dining

Accepted card types:

  • American Express

  • Eftpos

  • MasterCard

  • Visa


Tommy Payne

This review was made independently for the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide. The guide’s reviewers visit unannounced and pay their way.

Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide

Gourmet Traveller’s star-ratings, which range from zero to three stars, reflect reviewers’ first-hand experiences. The best-rated restaurants form our national Top 100. Our wine ratings, from zero to three stars, are made by wine editor Max Allen on the strength of the quality of the restaurant’s wine list. View our rating key here.

El Público
511 Beaufort St Highgate, Perth, WA
Tommy Payne
Bookings recommended
Wheelchair Access
Opening Hours
Dinner Mon-Fri 5pm-midnight, Sat-Sun 4pm-midnight

Related stories