Friday, 9 September 2016

Bangalow Dining Rooms - Restaurant Review

Mr P. and I headed down to Northern Rivers again on the weekend for the Sample Food Festival.  I think we are honorary locals by now as we are down there so much. This time we stayed at an Airbnb place for the first time as we had heard from friends that it had worked out well for them in Paris.  

we had lunch at Tumbulgum while heading down to Bangalow   

We stayed in an old cottage with a friendly ghost.  Well, I don't think she was part of the deal but I definitely felt her presence.  It was actually a bit weird; I don't particularly believe in ghosts and I have never had any sort of experience with them but both nights I turned out the light, rolled over and said goodnight to the female ghost.  I didn't see her and I wasn't afraid of her, but somehow she was there as "the female ghost".  That's how the words popped into my head.  So odd.

a Japanese lady ghost (Wikimedia Commons) 

We met up with Miss B. our potter mate and had dinner at the local pub - well sort of. The Bangalow Dining Rooms are part of the building but are not licensed so you have to go to the bar and get your own drinks.  What the!?  And there is a $20 eftpos limit at the bar.  Too bad if you are on your own or only want one drink.  NSW sure does have some weird laws about serving alcohol :=)

It was Friday night, the place was hopping and the restaurant was getting full by the time Miss B. arrived after a hard day's potting. Our friendly waitress Corinne took our orders and advised us we could get drinks at the bar.  But considering that we were at a pub, the wines by the glass were few and far between.  I had a NZ Sauv Blanc while Miss B. had a pinot grigio which were $7.50 each.

drinks hauled back to our table by Miss B. and Mr P. :=) 

I am not a shucker and don't shuck at home, so have to get my oyster fix when I eat out.  Here I had a 1/2 dozen natural.  I was a bit disappointed that the menu didn't say where they were from or what kind but enjoyed the plump little beauties anyway.  I don't think they were freshly shucked to order as there was no brine on them, which detracted just a bit from my enjoyment.  

Hubby had goat's cheese cigars with rocket salad.  His words were: "crunchy on the outside and soft in the middle."  I asked him about the flavour, but he said the goat's cheese was very mild and he couldn't detect much else.  He really liked the crunchy texture though.      

1/2 doz. oysters natural $19  

entree of goat's cheese cigars with rocket salad $22 - a wee bit pricy perhaps?


Hubby liked this well enough, and Miss B. enjoyed her taste, but I think the price is a wee bit steep for what it is.  Basically $11 each for a bit of pastry and cheese - mmm...Mr P. agreed that while they were okay, he wasn't madly in love with them, and felt they were a bit over-priced.

braised beef cheeks with spaetzle, beans and sweet potato crisps $32    

Much to my own surprise, I chose braised beef cheeks for the second time in my life. And I can tell you they were superb.  Miss B. chose them too so we both delighted in their tender and hearty deliciousness.  And those cute little spaetzle ('little sparrows'). Oh my, they were wonderful. As you may know, they are basically German pasta.  The dough is pushed through a spaetzle maker which gives you tiny bits of pasta.  These were fried as well as boiled or steamed, so doubly delicious.  Our waitress told us she loved them too.  Yep pretty darn tasty little devils.  And that beef cheek - tender, melt in the mouth and so full of flavour.  We were in heaven.  Oh, and the sweet potato chips were sweet and crunchy - yum.

mushroom risotto $30 

This risotto was a huge hit with Mr P.  "Probably the best risotto I have ever had" were his words of high praise.  He is a keen rice eater, and a good risotto can be hard to find. This one made him a happy little diner.  The texture was just right - not too firm nor too sloppy.  The thyme and mushrooms were spot on, with loads of flavour.  (I snuck a forkful to check it out - yep good stuff.)

sorbet/icecream $11

We shared the dessert of yoghurt sorbet, cinnamon icecream and Christmas pudding icecream.  (Clever Corinne brought 3 spoons without us asking.)  I liked all 3 flavours but I think the cinnamon was a real hit.  Miss B. indulged in a chamomile tea ($4); I think 3 cups later she was all done in.  She hurried off home to get some much needed sleep while we strolled back to our little cottage and our ghost.

We had a truly delicious dinner here, and would love to go again soon.  Miss B. told us the chef is a friend of hers, and hails from France.  This was the Winter menu, so I am keen to try a new Season.  They also have a Pub menu, and I believe you can order from either one.

Verdict:  Great food on the whole, friendly waitress and a fine night with friends.

1 Byron St, Bangalow NSW
Ph: 02 6687 1384

Bangalow Hotel Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 


  1. What a perfect weekend! I just love Bangalow and would always go the the Sample food festival. I haven't been for 2 years! That's given me an idea about organising future accommodation as well. Some times it can be a challenge in that area. Maybe minus the ghost though. I actually don't think that's a bad thing about the ghost, you're probably just more in tune with your surroundings Sherry. A great thing :)

    1. Oh she was a friendly ghost Jem I'm sure. You must get yourself to Sample next year!

  2. Sounds like a delicious meal! And the ghost-wow! Did you ask about the ghost and do the owners have any information about her?

    1. We have asked the owners about the ghost and they know nothing of her but they are going to ask around it's very exciting isn't it!?

  3. Not that long ago, we used to visit Bangalow and stay at the pub. Old fashioned rooms with a shared bathroom. It was just on the cusp of Bangalow's hispterdom. We haven't been in around 10 years but imagine that staying the pub is probably not an option these days. The meal sounds good so I'm guessing the pub's a little different too. I'm envious of you going to Sample Fest. I didn't know it was on and saw lot's of social media from you and another friend. Try to remember to remind me for next year!

    1. There are actually lots of Airbnb places down there if you want to stay in bangalow. Northern rivers is changing fast. So trendy.


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