COVID-safe dining takes on a new look at Steamers who are doing a unique pop-up dining experience next door.

Innovation and resilience: Therese Ly greeting some of the first guests in the new pop-up Steamers restaurant in the Ocean Room at City Beach Function Centre.
Innovation and resilience: Therese Ly greeting some of the first guests in the new pop-up Steamers restaurant in the Ocean Room at City Beach Function Centre.

Steamers is one of many Wollongong restaurants changing the way they do things to provide COVID safe dining experiences for customers in 2020.

This Saturday the seaside eatery is taking advantage of its location to introduce a new pop-up dining experience with a twist in the adjoining City Beach Function Centre.

Since COVID-19 sent NSW into lockdown earlier this year Steamers has continually evolved to meet social distancing requirements as restrictions changed from one month to the next.

While there has been some good news this week about an easing in restrictions for school formals and weddings the two functions rooms at City Beach are still likely to be less busy leading up to Christmas than in previous years.

Festive celebrations are also likely to look different this year with smaller group bookings expected to be more the norm.

So Steamers has converted the Ocean Room into a funky, beachside dining space. The fit-out has a similar vibe to the restaurant and menu has been created for the dining space that includes intimate tables of two overlooking the beach to larger tables for small groups wanting to end 2020 with a celebration.

The Ocean Room is available for dining every Saturday in October but may be extended to more than one night a week as Christmas draws closer.

Marketing manager Belle Jarvis said tables will be well spaced out in the Ocean Room that will be limited to a total of 57 people.

"But coming into November and December if we get busier we will transfer across to the larger function room that can accommodate 107 people," she said.

Ms Jarvis said if the innovative dining experience proves popular on some nights they may be in a position to run all three venues which would bring the total dining capacity back to where it was for Steamers prior to COVID-19.

She said one of the advantages of making use of the other rooms in the function centre is the eatery can offer people one long sitting so no-one needs to feel rushed.

Ms Jarvis said it also meant more work for all their casual staff.

And more space would also provide Steamers with an opportunity to accept more walk-ins for people who haven't booked and made a last minute decision to go out for dinner.

"And weather permitting we can move some tables out onto the terrace if that is preferred," she said.

The new pop-up menu:

Plates served to the table - $65pp

BREAD

organic sour dough cob | balsamic & olive oil | cultured butter v/*

START

wood-fired chilli salted calamari | roasted garlic aioli | chilli jam df/gf

IN BETWEENS

Xiao Long Bao ( steamed vegetable dumpling) | ginger vinegar sauce df/v/vf

MIDDLE

Israeli spiced lamb | hummus | flat bread | pomegranate salsa df

Korean sticky chicken | wood fired | radish apple kimchi | garlic & chilli fried noodles df

seared salmon | seared scallop | corn puree | herb crumble | salmon pearls gf

SIDES

garlic house mash gf/v

house mixed leaves | lemon oil df/gf/v/vf

ENDS

(Alternate serve)

coconut tapioca pudding | raspberry sorbet | almond meringue drops | apple curd gf/v/df/*

churros | dulce de leche | mango puree

Bookings 4229 6895

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This story COVID-safe dining takes on a new look at Steamers first appeared on Illawarra Mercury.