Thanks to the team at Tarts Cafe in Northrbridge and the jazz superstar Cathrine Summers, Casey from Travelling Corkscrew and I were invited to review their Jazz and Shiraz evening. On every Wednesday from 6.30pm – 9.30pm, Cathrine sings sweet jazz tunes accompanied by a pianist or guitarist – all while you indulge in wine and the tasty authentic foodie delights at Tarts Cafe. Sounds bliss, right?
The newly established Tarts Cafe is not your average ‘cafe’. On a Wednesday night, it’s almost hard to miss nestled in it’s quiet location only a heartbeat out of Northbridge. Buzzing with atmosphere when you walk in and a warmth about it that just makes you feel good, it’s a super quirky place that showcases a little bit of everything. From vintage to class, casual yet funky it’s the sort of ‘cafe’ that turns into a cosy wine and dine bar at night, complete with live music and some of the tastiest food around.
And it was the perfect night to come check it out too. Jazz and shiraz evening with the lovely Cathrine Summers. For me, there’s something about jazz music that really correlates with sparkling wine. Maybe it’s the sense of sophistication you feel when you hear those smooth jazz vocals or sip on a glass of bubbles, or perhaps it’s simply that feel-good setting they both have the power to create. Whatever it is, it went out the window when we popped open a bottle of shiraz. A deep red wine that oozes sex appeal collective with that typical jazz flavour – to be honest, it was a sublime combination. Jazz and shiraz vino has now become my new favourite thing!
Between sipping on a bottle of Bosworth shiraz and nibbling on tapas and platters that’ll send your taste buds into a wild frenzy, Cathrine took to the stage her seductively sexy vocals alongside the young stud on keys. Flaunting all things glamorous (including her very appropriate bright red ‘shiraz’ shoes) her cheekily playful personality and soulful sounds were very quick to lure you in. Rolling in and out of different languages, she sung all those passionate classics including Etta James – At Last, Ray Charles – Georgia on My Mind, Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. To top it off, renditions of My Favourite Things from the Sound of Music and Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean went off flawlessly with the latter really showing off Cathrine’s funk-jazz style.
Alternating between singing as a duo with guitar and keyboard, Cathrine admits she feels more at home singing alongside the keys, it’s the “wind beneath her wings”, as she puts it. And whilst I would’ve loved to have seen her duo performance with the guitar too, there was something very fitting about the vocal-keys combination that evening. Breaking her performances up between the guitar and keys definitely helps in creating layers to her show and goes to prove her point that “no gig is ever the same”.
Between songs, Cathrine’s casual jokes and conversation lightened the mood of the night with a crowd interaction that was perfectly personalised for the event. It’s safe to say too, that the combination of full-bodied jazz music and wine that’s rich in flavour sets the tone of the night effectively – really heightening all your senses and creating the ultimate experience.
Tarts Cafe’s ‘Jazz and Shiraz’ evening was topped off with an atmosphere that was intimate without being awkward, and cosy without being too casual. Culturally beautiful in an environment where you’re treated like family, not just a number; the vibe is sociable, friendly and inviting.
It’s hard to find a place these days that offers the whole package – great food, great music, great wine and great people – but Tarts Cafe absolutely nails it on the head. And whilst it may look small from the outside, it’s big in quality with a stunning outdoor breakfast garden and wine cellar to truly complete its style. If you’re after something a little different, that stills feel familiar at the same time – make sure you check this place out.
For more details on what Tarts Cafe has on offer, connect with them on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram – just be sure to book because it fills up quickly. And for more details on Cathrine Summers and where you can catch her on her next gig, you can follow her on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.