Make no bones about it, Madalena’s is hot, fuelled by buzz, a passionate team and no shortage of stellar seafood. Not bad for a relatively nondescript bar at the southern end of South Fremantle.
Why is Madalena’s so hot, when many aren’t? It’s super casual, real, unpretentious and simple, but it’s the innovative and engaging cookery and service style that does it. These people like you and it shows. And the floor staff are easy to like in return.
Madalena’s is one of the most authentic, enjoyable new bars we’ve encountered.
For a seafood bar, Madalena’s serves a fine duck-liver parfait, so enriched with clarified butter and whole eggs, it’s a wonder it didn’t split in the cooking. It comes with toasted baguette and organic prunes that chef Adam Rees dehydrates, just so he can rehydrate them in vermouth and honey. Stop it.
Fresh sardines are even simpler. The fish are as fresh as first snow, simply cleaned and grilled whole. They’re slightly charred for a nice smoky backbeat and, as one expects of sardines, they’re full of oily flavours.
Madalena’s lemon tart is a proper classic, too, filled with a smooth, tart lemon custard just set in a crisp, thin shell. It comes teamed with clotted cream that’s cultured until soured and complex.
Madalena’s is a great bar where you can pop and have a drink in comfort as the sun goes down. It has a brilliant, modern wine list. And as it grows and changes, it just keeps getting better.