We’re not sure what to make of Lions & Tigers. That’s not to say it’s missing the mark. In fact its quirky take on Indian flavours attached to modern ingredients and techniques, is refreshingly off beat. One thing’s for sure, we’ve never seen anything like it before in this town.

Housed in the former Stable Hands restaurant site – unfortunately shuttered following a wall collapse two years ago – Lions & Tigers is the creation of the couple who also own cult Freo breakfast haunt Duck Duck Bruce. They’ve got form when it comes to quirky and wry and silly fun.

Alia Glorie is one of WA’s most celebrated chefs and her move to Lions & Tigers in mid-2019 was considered, well, unusual. Until we tasted her food, that is. We get it. This creative and intelligent cook is having a ball: playing with her food and our expectations with humour, fresh thinking and precise cookery.

While there is more than a hint of irreverence (the menu is fittingly entitled “Face Filling Awesomeness”), the dishes are no laughing matter. Our favourites? A mash-up of just-caught Freo octopus with tangy ajwani and creamy dal and hand-rolled Bengali luchi tacos with supple slow-cooked pork-shoulder, fragrant Kashmiri chilli sauce and punchy pear chutney. And let’s call it – the onion bhajis are the best in town, and just $3.50 a pop.

With a wine list that boasts a choice of vibrant, invigorating chilled reds (hallelujah!) and other carefully sourced modern wines, Lions & Tigers has both roar and bite.