By Mary Ellen Psaltis
It’s date night. You’re thinking, “It’d be great to go somewhere new. Nice, but not too fancy. Someplace fresh, fun and affordable with easy parking.” How about sʔəɫəd tulʼčaʔkʷ? What? You haven’t heard of it? Pronounce it sulthud toltchatkwa, deriving from the Nisqually word meaning food from the water.
After listening to the hopes of their guests and wanting to provide innovative ways to support tribe fisheries, Red Wind designed a casually elegant space within the building to highlight sustainably caught fish from three different tribes.
The brand new restaurant is also a way to honor their cultural heritage.
Chef Roberto, who has been living and working in Hawaii, is pleased to focus all his attention on one restaurant. He previously worked at the Hilton Hawaiian Village on Oahu. “It’s exciting to be in a casino atmosphere with repeat guests,” said Chef Roberto. He’s bringing the flair of Hawaii to your table with the help of his trained staff. You can be treated to poké, a tasty raw fish salad, for example.
Watch your dinner be prepared and cooked in the open style kitchen. The restaurant uses as many local products as possible, such as lavender from a nearby farm. Other food comes from tribal sources including wild plum syrup and wild rice from Minnesota.
One of the first to experience the restaurant was Vivian Clermont, the voice of the Casino. As the main phone operator, she’s usually at the other end of your call. At 73-years-old, Vivian eschewed retirement and found full-time employment. She likes the supportive and congenial environment at Nisqually Red Wind Casino where nearly 600 people are employed.
What did she think about her dinner? “Ohhhh… everything was good,” she remembers. “The poké was excellent; the catch of the day was salmon; and there was a delicious roll made from wild rice. And there was just enough room to savor the coconut amaretto cake.”
You, too, can relish the sea of abundance of the restaurant’s menu. For those who prefer an early dinner (between 3:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.), find a special Eventide 3-course menu for $19.95. If someone in your dining party would prefer beef, choose from a filet mignon or New York steak. There is also a sushi bar on the weekend. Reservations are not required at this time, but are recommended.
Note: Guests under 21 years of age must be at least 16 and accompanied by a guest 21+. Active and retired military with a valid military ID receive 25% off purchases in the buffet, deli, grille, seafood restaurant and gift shop. Seniors 55+ also receive 25% off dining venues and gift shop.
The Nisqually Red Wind Casino’s seafood restaurant is open Sunday through Thursday from 3:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. and stays open until 11:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
After you’ve watched the bustling kitchen activities, you can linger over coffee or an after-dinner drink. Then if you are in the mood, there’s plenty of gaming. Check their Facebook page for other entertainment and events. You can also find information on Nisqually Red Wind Casino’s website.