11 March 2008

A Real Canberra Tragedy - Vale the Tradies Schnitty

| jimbocool
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Sunday evening I tootled off to the Tradies Club in Dickson for some good old fashined comfort food in the shape of a Chicken Scnnitzel with pepper sauce. Now the Dickson Tradies Schnitty needs no introduction to Riotacters – as we all know it is a wonderous thing (magnificently unhealthy to be sure, you feel your arteries clogging as you dine) and somewhat of an institution in Canberra. When I arrived I could tell stright away that things were amiss – the recent renovations had finshed and while the hole in the wall where you order was considerably perked up (you can now see the kitchen proper, like a fancy cafe) there was no immediate indication of schnitzels (the board is no longer up). Even after a quick look at the menu, schnitzels were not immediately apparent. “Oh no!” I said to the lady at the till, “don’t tell me you don’t do schnitzels anymore”. She assured me they did and pointed them out on the menu – my heart sank as the words, “the famous schnitzels are now even better” were printed thereon. Is there an example anywhere in history where a food product labelled as “now even better” has turned out to be that way? Dishearted, I ordered a chicken schnitty with pepper sauce – hoping it was just a slip of the tongue when the lady said, “pepper gravy” as she repeated my order.

After a while, my little buzzer thingy buzzed to let me know that my order was ready – I went and picked up and my heart sank even lower – where there should have been a beautiful thin schnitty the size of my head lieberally covered in pepper sauce was instead two thick schnitzel like items, with a drizzle of what looked like gravy with some green peppercorns thrown in. I sat down, cut off a piece and ate it – it was awful. It was obviously a pre-packaged, frozen schnitzel – like you would buy from the frozen food section of Woolies. With thick crusting (not breaded, more like a batter) with the meat too thick for a true schnitty. The sauce was even worse, packet gravy with pepercorns thrown in. Now the old Tradies pepper sauce had its ups and downs, but it was actually a real sauce made with staock and cream – not Gravox. The whole thing was disgusting, and a disgrace – if I wanted Inghams frozen schnitzels, I would’ve had em at home!

While I will write to the Tradies to protest this outrage, I’m not sure what good it will do as it is obvious that the bistro has been outsourced to a catering company – God knows why, it can’t be to save money given how rich the club is. In the meantime I’m now looking for a new schnitty – preferably in a club as it’s easier to manage a baby & pram in a club than a restaurant.

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Came across this thread looking for schnitty in the city. What’s the best chicken schitzel to be had in Civic? Good chips and gravy a must.

Just got word from a co-worker that Eastlakes have bumped their Schnitzel lunches, that have slowly gone up from $5, are now $10, and of inferior quality- and the only sauce was gravy. Sounds suspiciously like this…

“Hmmm…is there nobody willing to blame K Rudd’s razor gang?!?”

Think of the the impact this will have on the average “working family”!!!!!

A schnitzel not made of veal is merely crumbed chicken.
Wiener is the only way to go.

Stereo Henry – Soul Bar at Woden do an alright Chicken Parmi. It’s probably the highlight of their small range of food offerings since their lamb shanks vanished…
As far as schnittys go, in Woden the Hellenic Club does alright, but they could certainly do with a bit of work on the side offerings…

Read this out to my other half who suggested I post a link to the chicken schnitzel recipe recently featured on Food Safari (SBS).

Austrian Club, Mawson – schnitzel, chips and sauerkraut for $16 – no choice of sauces. But i’d eat there every night if I could!

Same happened with Kingsleys Chicken.
When I worked in the city a few years ago their Schitzel burger was a real schnitzel on a big bun with chilli sauce and lettuce – the only thing on the menu worth eating I thought and a great hunger buster.
Then I returned to work in the city recently and while hungry thought it would be a perfect hunger buster again. I ordered, was puzzled that it cost so much but thought hey it a ‘schnitzel’.
When I opened the wrapper I was again surprised that it seems to have shrunk too, but hey I thought oh well bit its a ‘schnitzel’.
Then after a few mouthfulls of what felt like predigested hospital food I inspected my ‘schnitzel’.
To my horror I had not a schnitzel, it was a some sausage meat type filling/paste made exactly 4mm thick and pretending to be a schnitzel in its schnitzel shaped paddy – with some plastic-like crumbing.
I was shocked that this sausage meat (20% meat) was being palmed off as a pounded bit of chicken flesh.
But that’s not all. I took this fake food back to Kingsleys and demanded a refund. The guy tried to say it was a real schnitzel despite my protesting – he even showed me the pathetic packaging that said it was a schnitzel LOL! The schnitzel paddy shape on the packet was laughable!
I proceeded to explain that I’ve eaten there before when they used real schnitzels and I then explained how a schnitzel was made. I explained that what they had was not a schnitzel as is made of is sauasage meat, and that a schnitzel is made of tenderised flesh and crumbed.
In the end he gave me back my money, I went away starving and in a foul mood.
I feel some relief that there are other people out there as passionate about their schnitzel as I am.

Felix the Cat8:18 pm 11 Mar 08

I went to the Tradies a while back while they were still in the middle of their bistro renovations. The schnizel was basically crap, small and not very tasty. I put it down to disruption due to renovation but after reading this thread I won’t bother going back.

Gungahlin Lakes Golf Club has cheap (<$8) Chicken Schnitzels on Wednesday nights. Heaps better than the (current) Tradies offerings. Limited varieties of sauces available though.

Oh, the humanity…

As a second choice, the sssssshnitzels at the Croatia Club in Deakin are superb (and yes you get a variety of excellent sauces to choose from), for a measly $7 it’s gold, possibly not up to the tradies, admittedly, but still damn good – and it fills the entire plate!!!

Hmmm…is there nobody willing to blame K Rudss razor gang?!?

A damn shame! Why would they change the biggest seller in that place. I think the more people that say something the better – go facebook!!

Does anyone remember Clancy’s at the Heritage Village? They did great schnitzels and pepper sauce and dianne sauce! I literally did cry when they closed down.

Maggies used to have one so big, they had to stitch 2 chickens together to make it. Unfortunately, that too has gone the way of the dodo.

This is the only thing that could make Chuck Norris cry.

CanberraResident1:15 pm 11 Mar 08

It concerns me when you say “where there should have been a beautiful thin schnitty the size of my head” …

maaaaaate … you must have one massive noggin’ because those Tradies schnitzels were enormous …

oh yeah, and when is the dickson tradies NOT doing renovations … seems like a never ending thing with that place

stereo henry12:26 pm 11 Mar 08

Polish Club at O’Connor – great schnitzel, although I’m more of a chicken or veal parmigiana kinda guy and have noticed that it is hard to find one of these pub menu icons anywhere in Canberra! anyone know where to source a good one?

They’d still care… a) sounds like it’s been outsourced, so the operators will care as they don’t get pokie profits & b) the popularity (or lack thereof) of the bistro brings punters through the door (or not). The fewer punters through the door, the fewer punters playing pokies.

Do they even care though! I mean look at all the money that gets poured into the pokies over there…

I actually wonder what is a bigger gamble, the tradies pokies or the tradies meals???

For those with Facebook, I’ve created a “Bring Back the Tradies Schniddy” group, which of copurse will do nothing useful, except make us feel like we’re protesting:


You no likeee, you goeee elsewhereeee!

How can this be!?
How could they do such a thing!?

Is there no justice in the world?

Noooooooo! :,(

There’s no way the Dickson Tradies can have a worse schnitzel than the Woden Tradies, which is fair-dinkum appalling.

Have not been to Dickson in a while but used to love their sour cream schnitzel.

@bighead – I have to order the kids meals when I go to Central Cafe. No wonder there are so many fat kids in Qbn!

:(… Looks like central cafe will be getting another visit soon.

Next someone will be telling us that the Laksa at Dickson Noodle House has goen to the shite as well and then there’ll be no reason to go to Dickson ever again.

That is possibly the greatest ragedy in food in the history of Canberra. As a student we would go to the Tradies to have a ‘decent big feed’ on Schnitty. The Tradies will loose out big time on this one you can be sure. How bloody depressing.

Eastlake snitty is quality, however I think they are closed at the moment for renovations.

Holy Grail Kingston doesn’t do a bad job either.

It was with great sadness that we were forced to change plans mid bucks party last weekend when told on arrival to the tradies of the demise of the shnitzel.

A TRAVESTY!!! Shame tradies shame!!! Eastlake in Kingston/Griffith do $7.50 Schnitties! But they pale in comparison to the old tradies schnitzel…

Stories like this just make me wanna crawl back into bed and forget about living…


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