For those who keep an eye on the news, there’s a lot of excitement around the future of the Casino Canberra precinct. It’s new owner, Aquis, is looking to develop the existing casino into a multi-function venue to compete with some of the best in the world.
Casino Canberra’s Advantage Membership is a respectful group and all members are required to treat the Casino and their fellow patrons in an appropriate manner. Members may be removed from the Club if the member: Abuses any privilege accorded to the membership. Fails to comply with the terms and conditions of membership. (Mon – Sun) 17:00 – 21:00 pm - In Room Dining Room Service. BAR (Fri & Sat) 17:00 – 21:45 pm - Binara One.Adherence to COVID -19 local regulations in place. Self collect option available at Reception at any time for can and bottled beverages outside of bar opening times. Please refer to our menu's Redsalt Assisted Buffet Red Salt Dinner Menu. An a la carte breakfast menu is served Monday to Friday between 6:30am and 9am and on weekends between 7am and 10am. Bookings are recommended. To book call 02 6243 0000 or book online. The Courtyard Restaurant can also be booked for private lunches, dinners or events.
As a part of this vision, a whole new team is coming together at the existing venue. At the casino’s restaurant, Natural Nine, Executive Chef Chad Ogden has arrived with a fresh take on food that is a welcomed update. Ogden, who was trained in the some of the best restaurants in the USA (Daniel, New York and Charlie Trotter’s, Chicago) before heading off to Tokyo, Kyoto and an extended stay in Macau, is setting an exciting new direction that is the foundation for a restaurant refurbishment in the New Year.
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Looking across the revised menu there are plenty of favourites, however they all benefit from clever twists that demonstrate Odgen’s international experience.
There’s an art to preparing wontons, and one of the key challenges for any kitchen is to attain the perfect cases to showcase the delicious filling, Chef Ogden absolutely nails it with his home-made Shrimp and Pork Wontons. Paying close attention to Eastern traditions, the chilli oil adds a gentle heat without being overpowering. The highlight, of course, is the succulent mix of prawn and pork inside: Can you imagine two flavours you’d want more in a wonton? No, neither could we.
Steamed Clams with Lemongrass and Chilli continues the tradition with another bunch of fresh and zesty flavours hitting the palate. As you would expect, the meat of the clams is super fresh with just a hint of natural salt, however it is the addition of super-finely sliced red pepper, lemongrass and a hint of coriander that brings the dish together with spice and citrus-like zest.
For lunch (or a great early dinner) the BLTA Sandwich is a great go-to. Chef Ogden brings his North-American influences to the table with this fantastic version of a club sandwich. The rich, dark rye bread bread is a sensation – you simply don’t see this style much around Canberra. Inside is fresh tomato, lettuce and avocado with perfectly-cooked bacon, however it’s the addition of a saffron and roasted garlic aioli that takes this sandwich to another level.
When it comes to a great steak, the less distraction the better and Natural Nine certainly understands this concept. Their Grilled Tenderloin comes with mash and some grilled baby carrots and is served with a delicious pepper sauce. However, these are just the supporting characters to the star of the show – a perfectly-cooked piece of beef that offers very little resistance when the knife is applied. Oh, yes!
As for desserts, in keeping with the overall style of the menu, the list is simple but very well executed. The Strawberry Cream Cake towers on the plate, but its size belies the perfectly light sponge that is contained within. The strawberry elements aren’t overplayed – meaning this is a sweet dish that still feels balanced. With gloriously fresh cream it’s a great way to finish.
Natural Nine shows where Casino Canberra is going, and makes for a great place to eat on the east side of the city. Lunch is available from 12.00pm to 2.30pm and dinner is served from 5.30pm. We can’t wait to see what the next six months brings, but we’ll definitely be stopping in to be part of the journey.
It takes something special to stand out in Canberra’s food scene and Natural Nine, located inside Casino Canberra, has found the right balance with their ‘Pop Yum Cha‘ offering.
The team at Natural Nine have created a menu that incorporates a unique style of both food and design, combining local produce with a signature pop Chinese flare.
The highlights of the menu are the Crazy Chilli Chicken and Piggy Pork steam buns, while the unique Smoked Duck Sticky Rice Cigars and Chicken and Lemon Myrtle Taro Cakes will have your taste buds dancing.
As for dessert, I won’t spoil the fun, but the Orange Custard Squeeze Bun is an absolute must have on this menu.
“Pop Yum Cha is about showcasing what we love — ‘Yum Cha’ in our Pop Chinese Style,’ says Director of Food and Beverage, David Black.
“We’ve taken classic favourites such as steam buns, sticky rice and taro cakes and added a unique pop twist.
“Inspiration has been drawn from the flavours and the fun you see in cities such as Hong Kong and Taiwan, who are on the forefront of quality and trend. Pop Yum Cha is all about punchy flavour combinations, innovative techniques and playful aesthetics, in the form of delicious food.”
It’s not just the menu that will have Canberrans excited, with a creative bartending team, Pop Yum Cha includes an equally unique Chinese Zodiac inspired cocktail menu.
This menu – a few of which I tried as mocktails because of Dry July – compliments the Asian flavour showcased in Natural Nine’s Pop Yum Cha offering and with 12 different zodiac cocktails, one which contains a locally made sparkling Unicorn Vodka, there will be a flavour for everyone.
“We wanted to create a food experience for our customers that they’ve never had anywhere else in Canberra, maybe even Australia,” says Black. “Our drink offering is just as important as our food. Naturally, we had to create an all-new cocktail menu to accompany Pop Yum Cha.
“Each cocktail has been crafted to compliment every dish and complete the Pop Yum Cha experience. The menu is all about delicious, fun food that starts conversations and brings people together.”
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If cocktails aren’t your thing there twelve different teas, some Asian inspired, some as simple as an English breakfast.
Being located inside the Casino, Pop Yum Cha is an18+ experience, making it the perfect place to have an exclusive lunch here in Canberra.
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From today, Pop Yum Cha is available at natural nine from 12 pm – 3 pm, seven days a week.