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“Enjoyable experience, very high noise levels”
Review of OTIS Dining Hall

OTIS Dining Hall
Ranked #24 of 1,471 Restaurants in Canberra
Restaurant details
Reviewed 9 December 2017

We ate here on a busy Friday night recently and had an overall enjoyable experience. Having read some of the recent reviews we were a bit hesitant about what the service was going to be like as some of the reviews posted here over the last few months have been complimentary about the food but scathing about the service. As someone who has spent quite a number of years working in hospitality at both high and low end establishments I am both understanding about how service works and very observant about it as well

There were just two of us and we could not fault the service The restaurant was full (more about this in a minute), it was a busy Friday night, pouring with rain outside and service was both friendly and efficient. Everything arrived well paced. One course without cutlery was quickly remedied and we were completely happy with how we were attended.

We had three courses and food was all tasty some courses better than others, some delicious, others simply nice, portions well sized, my steak cooked exactly as requested and prices all reasonable. We were happy with all out choices. My one complaint is related to the decor and with it, the noise level. This restaurant is decorated in wood with lots of hard surfaces and the noise level when the restaurant is full is very. very high. I was seated opposite my partner and struggled to hear him a lot of the time. It really needs some baffles or some softening or acoustic attention to allow some easing of this. Related to this, we had a lateish seating and when we arrived, there was a group of 4 at the bar. They appeared to be friends of at least one of the staff and by the time they made it to their table, quite late, most of them were quite drunk and they were seated quite near us and the noise from their table was very loud and language was starting to get very colourful. We were pretty close to leaving anyway but if we hadn't been, it might have become an issue. So, enjoyed our meal and our service, found the noise a touch uncomfortable but not a game changer.

    • Value
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Thank Bad_Seed4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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15 - 19 of 214 reviews

Reviewed 7 December 2017 via mobile

Excellent food with some very interesting and unique flavours. The interior is fantastic and takes you back in time

Thank Glenn F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 December 2017

The room is like something out of Boardwalk Empire, authentic to the 1920s period when Canberra was founded. However the food is from the 2020s when Canberra hits it stride.

I started off with Wallaby tartare (apologies to VeganTarians) which I've never seen on a menu before. Then on to spanner crab fusilli. Then on to roasted barramundi. Finished off with Creme Caramel (with some Roswell/Alien sauce made of pure delight).

The wine list is lovingly curated and described by a well informed woman who's name I didn't catch.

The menu has a 3 or 4 course menu, each course with 4 options. Being a softwareengineer, I love the fact that I have to go back 3 more times to try every other offering on the menu.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank SuJo-a-GoGo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 December 2017

Interesting creative menu with some very good meals, service american style, introducing themselves and their role etc which worked quite well but the food combinations didn't work on the plate or from one course to another. This restaurant is not cheap and sets the expectation that it will be something special but doesn't warrant the price, surroundings are good, wine is good but not generously served for the price . just didn't reach the potential, maybe just a bad night in the kitchen. But then spring vegetable entree was small, low on flavour unimaginatively served and lacked textural and cross mixing opportunities. I would be happy to go back but would prefer that someone else paid. Actually the steak was great, pity about the air fired frozen french fries that were served with it, get my drift? Just didn't work as a whole

    • Value
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Thank ChapmanCanberra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 December 2017

Was very excited to be revisiting Otis, this time for a family celebration. I had been before with friends and thought everything about it was spot on. This time was the opposite. The service was hot and cold, we had to ask to for drinks and then for our order to be taken. The food was not terribly good, one meal was sent back but was still on our bill. It was unbelievably noisy and very hot, definitely not a relaxing, comfortable or enjoyable evening, and far too expensive for what it was. I don’t mind paying a bit for something good and this was not good or cheap. It was a busy evening and we were told that they were tweaking the menu but this shouldn’t be at the diners expense. Very disappointed.

Thank J O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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