Perth’s best pubs raising the bar in glorious food, from smokey barbecue ribs to classic fish and chips.

Settlers Tavern

Plenty of high-vis shirts in the beer garden. A packed calendar of touring acts. To the casual observer, this squat brick building on Margaret River’s main street looks like your stock-standard Aussie pub. Beyond the country-casual style, however, a food-and-beverage operation of substance awaits. On the verandah, a mighty American-made Yoder smoker – the gold standard among meat enthusiasts – is one sign of owners Rob and Karen Gough’s commitment to sweating the details. The pay-off is excellent barbecue (chicken wings, sandwiches, the ribs of many a delicious beast) that’s smoky and juicy in all the right places. The rest of the menu is equally gratifying and features pub classics such as chicken parmigiana, curries, and fish and chips sourced and cooked with care. The kicker? The pub’s legendary wine list (thrilling imports, hot new locals) and great tap beers that include Settlers’ own brews.

114 Bussell Highway, Margaret River; (08) 9757 2398

Print Hall 

First things first: the public bar at Print Hall, a glam shrine to eating and drinking in the former headquarters of The West Australian newspaper, sits at the flasher end of the pub spectrum. But once this white-collar favourite finds its voice, Print Hall’s decibel level can match it with any watering hole in the land. The clamour could be guests discussing the drinks list, an encyclopedic tome that runs from trophy wines to cult beers and a saffron-infused Martini made in a Tibetan singing bowl. Recently arrived chef Fabio Lopes upholds a reputation for elevated favourites so the burger is grilled over wood, the fish in the fish and chips changes frequently and the oysters are shucked to order. Great handmade pasta – fat pappardelle dressed with a chunky pork and beef ragù; potato gnocchi with gorgonzola – is another win for business entertaining.

Brookfield Place, 125 St Georges Terrace, Perth; (08) 6282 0000

SEE ALSO: A Weekend In… Margaret River, WA

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