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Cheap Eats: The Glass House Café

By Serina Bird Huang (aka Ms Frugal Ears) - 2 December 2015 0

The Glasshouse

The Glass House Café prettily pokes out of the first level of Industry House like an English country conservatory. I could imagine sitting at The Glass House Café at a function with people looking in from outside enviously at the mirth. When I visited there were there was a small market out front. I felt like I was on holidays rather than brief interlude from work.

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I chose the advertised $12 daily lunch special – 18 hour slow-cooked roast beef. The texture was not much different from ordinary roast beef, but it was tender and there was rather a lot of it. The meal came with four veg – roast potato, pumpkin, honey carrots and peas. The peas were overcooked, but the pumpkin was surprisingly good, which surprised me as I don’t usually like pumpkin.

My meal was good value, but definitely not fancy. It reminded me of pub counter meals my grandparents would take me to when I was growing up. I was tempted to write this off as too ordinary. But not everyone likes pretentious or trendy food written in Italian or French; sometimes it is good to have something traditional and solid. I have a family member visiting soon who would like this meal; raised in an Aussie country town she cooks a roast every week.

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The Glass House Café’s Facebook page advertises regular lunch specials from $10. Beyond specials, The Glass House Café has other low-cost options including beef (or vegetarian) burger ($14), fettucini carbonara ($14), and calamari basket ($15). It also does all-day breakfast with a range of budget brekkie items including house made baked beans with sour dough toast and fried eggs ($12).

The Glass House Café distinguished itself for having one of the happiest and friendliest waiters in Canberra. My dining companion remarked that whenever he is served by this waiter he feels like it just lifts his whole day; it is definitely service with a smile that goes the extra mile. The food was quick to be served as well, so it is a good venue for a work lunch for people dining at one of the many office buildings nearby.

With the festive silly season about to kick into full swing, The Glass House Café would be a good venue to rest tired shopping legs. It is only a minutes’ walk from Myer, yet far enough to escape piped Christmas music and tinsel. It is also much quieter than, yet similarly priced to, a shopping centre food court and slightly more upmarket. If you are still in the mood for shopping, directly opposite is Handmade Canberra, which provides unique design options for Canberra Christmas shopping.

The Glass House Café is in the Entertainment Book, and offers a discount of up to $20.

What: The Glass House Café
Where: Ground Floor, Industry House, 10 Binara St, Civic
Opening hours: 8.30am-4.30pm (Mon – Fri)
Website: GlassHousecafe.com.au

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