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Worst Meal in Canberra?

By ant - 30 April 2009 124

I wanted to post this in the 2006 long-running “worst Canberra restaurants” topic, but it’s so full it won’t play with MS internet explorer. So maybe it’s time for a new topic about meals you are sorry you ate (and paid for).

Tonight we tested the Twisted Fork at the Dickson Tradies, and it was the worst meal I’ve had in memory. I’m still feeling ill. 

When they brought our meals, we were amazed to find that the one person who’d opted for veggies had an oval dish of veggies, but for the remaining three people, one oval dish of chips was for all three of us! The chips were good though. Pity about the rest of it. The veggies were not very nice, either. The potatoes were on their second night by the taste of it. It’s hard to ruin potatoes but they’d achieved it.

When ordering, I’d asked if they had any vinegar for the chips, and the ordering lady said the plastic bottle on the condiments stand had vinegar. Well, after scattering this on my chips, it became evident that this was in fact a “vinegrette” dressing, but one of doubtful provenance.  The best description I can come up with is, that the oil was rancid, for industrial use only (greasing trays or something), and had been stored in a container usually used for dish washing detergeant (just typing that made me feel ill again). It was disgusting.

I’ve heard good things about the Tradies, but this meal was really bad.  Misery loves company, and I’d love to hear that someone else has had worse food recently. 

What’s Your opinion?


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124 Responses to
Worst Meal in Canberra?
lumnock 11:43 am 30 Apr 09

If you didn’t enjoy your mean it’s because you were sober obviously. Why you would step up to a meal from the Dicko Tradies without a 6 pack in you first is beyond me. Not that I’m excusing the place, but as has been said already “Eat at a club – get club food!”

justbands 11:42 am 30 Apr 09

> Not all clubs are that bad though. I’ve been having meals at the Weston Club for the past few weeks, and they’re pretty good quality.

+ 1, it’s always really good.

chewy14 11:40 am 30 Apr 09

Hamilton said :

Eat at a club – get club food!! Next time try the Ottoman or Chairman & Yip.

Club food is usually much better value, because they can afford to subsidise the club restaurant/bistro from the poker machine revenue. They just want to get people in the door.

But if you want to be a snob, go right ahead.

Thumper 11:36 am 30 Apr 09

Magpies at Kippax does an awesome schnitzel with bacon and cheese on top. My cholesterol went up just looking at it.

And really good veggie burgers as well.

Bells 11:36 am 30 Apr 09

I agree that not all club food is bad. I have enjoyed a few good schnitzels at the Sthn Cross club in the last year or so. And I’m a food snob.

Jim Jones 11:30 am 30 Apr 09

Hamilton said :

Eat at a club – get club food!! Next time try the Ottoman or Chairman & Yip.

Why would I want to pay too much to eat middling quality food surrounded by yuppies?

sepi 11:24 am 30 Apr 09

Club food should be big meals, hearty and quick and cheap. Tradies is nil for four on those criteria.

Mr Evil 11:23 am 30 Apr 09

Hamilton said :

Eat at a club – get club food!! Next time try the Ottoman or Chairman & Yip.

Not all clubs are that bad though. I’ve been having meals at the Weston Club for the past few weeks, and they’re pretty good quality.

Hamilton 11:18 am 30 Apr 09

Eat at a club – get club food!! Next time try the Ottoman or Chairman & Yip.

ant 10:50 am 30 Apr 09

It seemed quite pricey for a club meal. $18 for chicken kievs (that were unpleasant tasting), and $14 for small serves of “barra”, which is actually OK. Except they weren’t very nice either!

The thing of amalgamating the chips for 3 people onto one small oval dish was downright weird though. There was heaps of room on the plates, why not just put them there?

But the oil-thing was truly gross. The staff should know what’s in the bottles on the condiments table (it was a yellow plastic squeeze-bottle), and that oil should not have been served to any person, any time. Dish detergeant and industrial cooking oil. That was rancid.

I don’t think we’ll be back.

From now on, please put your warnings about bad meals here! I for one will be taking careful note.

sepi 10:15 am 30 Apr 09

The Tradies is ridiculous now. There is never anyone in there either.

We had a meal in the new restaurant a few weeks ago. It was terrible. It took over an hour to arrive, and we got all fired up to complain, but when we went up there, half the teenage staff were in tears, so we had to be nice about it. Apparently most meals were beigng returned as undercooked, or not what people ordered.

Eventually they brought us a schnitzel and a salad. The schnitzel was scary looking (had brown avocado spread all over the top – not a good look). It tasted ok.

MsCheeky 9:53 am 30 Apr 09

A group of us were regulars at the Monday night Trivia in the Trams for a while, and ate our way through most of the menu. I guess the best you could say about it was that it was cheap, and I thought you were essentially getting what you paid for. When I read that someone new was taking over the catering, I thought it might get better. Evidently not.

I wouldn’t rate it as worst ever, but it was certainly very ordinary. The trivia was great however, and the cash prizes we won generally paid for the meal every week!

Jim Jones 9:48 am 30 Apr 09

My heart broke when they got rid of the schnitzelarium at the Tradies. Chasseur schnitzel (schnitzel with a whine white, garlic and mushroom sauce) was the one food that I had constant cravings for. I was so infatuated it with it that, many years ago, I ended up having christmas lunch at the Tradies once (it’s not that sad, I ducked in between relative visits and hanging out with friends).

The staff were great (and worked damned hard), the food was excellent value, and the place was always packed – it had one hell of a reputation.

God knows why the Tradies management decided to throw all that away in favour of the sh1t they serve up now. I’ve visited twice since the new caterers, and each time I’ve been bitterly disappointed at the appalling quality of the food, the stupid overpricing, and the chaotic lack of organisation. I threw away my membership card (I’m not going to need it anymore) and have noted that most of my friends have done the same.

Steady Eddie 9:47 am 30 Apr 09

Everybody should boycott Tradies (both of them) until they reopen 83 Restaurant.

jimbocool 9:24 am 30 Apr 09

I was only thinking this morning whether the Tradies had got their act back together after ditching the schnitzel house. The answer appears to be a resounding ‘no’. Thanks for the warning, Ant.

The new ‘corporate Tradies’ really has lost the plot – no bicycle museum, no planetarium and observatory (admittedly in the Downer club, but part of the Tradies empire), no holiday accommodation, no subsidised food (the restaurant is shocking because it’s been tendered out to the lowest bidder). It’s not even doing the basics of providing life support to the pokies…

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