Thumbs up for pretty, peaceful dining at the river

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Crunchy Caesar salad… perked up with salty bacon bits, a hard-boiled egg, punchy anchovy fillets and Parmesan cheese. Photo: Wendy Johnson.

Before the restaurant closures started, dining reviewer WENDY JOHNSON savoured a delightful eating spot before a leisurely walk along by the river. 

PERCHED on the side of a hill overlooking the Queanbeyan river is a very pretty and peaceful place to enjoy a casual brekkie, light lunch or afternoon tea. 

The Riverbank of Queanbeyan café is a delightful spot and you can choose from several eating zones a big sunny deck with great views of the water, a bright enclosed space, a shaded pergola area out the back, or various tables scattered about under mature, large, lush trees offering loads of shade.

The menu isn’t super extensive but, as the saying goes, “there’s something for everyone”, including kids and pets (the doggie menu includes poochy pasta and canine chook bits, both $5). 

One of our party selected the crunchy cos Caesar salad ($20), perked up with salty bacon bits, a hard-boiled egg, punchy anchovy fillets and Parmesan cheese. The housemade Dijon mustard dressing was tasty and the salad can be made more fulsome with chicken or smoked salmon (extra $4). 

Beef ragu penne… slow-cooked, so super tender and the tomato-based sauce was rich and full of flavour. Photo: Wendy Johnson.

Two of us were attracted to the beef ragu penne which was a massive serve (we each took some home). The meat was slow-cooked, so super tender and the tomato-based sauce rich and full of flavour. Some of the penne was just slightly overcooked but we were relaxed in a lovely environment and decided it wasn’t the end of the world.

Hazelnut torte… not too sweet and made with ground hazelnut meal. Photo: Wendy Johnson.

We shared a couple of sweets and gave a big thumbs up to the hazelnut torte made with ground hazelnut meal ($8). It wasn’t a mega sugar hit, which we liked. The Portuguese custard tart was creamy ($6).

Other items on the lunch menu include carrot and feta lasagne ($20), chicken and mango salad ($22.50), red Thai pumpkin and chickpea curry ($19.50), fish and chips ($23.50) and steak sandwich ($24.50). For something lighter, sandwiches are $12.50. Shared high tea for two is $49.

The Riverbank of Queanbeyan café is vegetarian friendly, with plenty of vegan and gluten-free options. 

Staff are super friendly although the service was intermittent. The salad came out waaay before the pasta, for example, which is always awkward for customers.

The café is next door to the Queanbeyan Art Society and Gallery with artwork, jewellery, candles and other items displayed for sale inside where you pay.

When finished, enjoy a leisurely walk along the river.

Riverbank of Queanbeyan café, 4 Trinculo Place, Queanbeyan, 0417 465 457. Open seven days.

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Wendy Johnson
Wendy Johnson: Food reviewer for Canberra CityNews magazine since 2004, covering stories for true foodies to digest.

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