Dine with a difference at Café Balaena
CHOOSING Cafe Balaena at Urangan, Hervey Bay, to catch up with long-time friends in March 2020, gave Saucy Pierre* and I an unexpected opportunity to dine with a difference.
‘Dancing Dean’ was in fine form doing a knees-up routine as he sang Happy Birthday to three different customers throughout the evening.
I had visited Cafe Balaena six or seven years ago when my youngest son Terry was a chef there. Pierre had also eaten there on many occasions.
So we were both familiar with the restaurant’s quality cuisine and stunning views over the marina but seeing owner Dean Major dancing was new to us.
Reviewers get on board through Tripadvisor
Turns out Dean is well known for his enthusiastic routines, attracting positive comments on Tripadvisor.
Dirk W from Mermaid Beach wrote: “The man obviously loves his job and is good at it.”
LeanneP168 wrote: “The owner is fantastic. He is very hands-on…. love his enthusiasm.”
Menu with a difference
Regarding the menu, another reviewer said there were some very strange combinations.
I wouldn’t say ‘strange’ as the word implies ‘weird’ but there were some selections that you’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere else.
One such choice was Wagyu Beef and Caramelised Onion Pie.
It was made of rich and juicy wagyu beef chunks marinated in red wine, then enfolded in a homemade herb gravy with caramelised onion and garlic with Balaena green salad, chips and a mango and pawpaw chutney.
However, three on our table of four weren’t overly adventurous that night and we all ordered the Caribbean Chicken Breast (pictured above).
This was made of grilled chicken breast with Australian grown avocado, silky smooth hollandaise and camembert cheese on a bed of mixed potato mash.
All meals were brought to the table in good time and were well presented.
All round, we enjoyed a terrific night out, dining in a brilliant water-side atmosphere with delicious food and great company.