Six Friends, 12 Moons and a Rainbow: Dining at the Snoqualmie Casino

I don’t know about you, but we have several friends that we haven’t seen since well before the beginning of the pandemic.

So, when we planned to have dinner with one long-neglected couple, we added another and made it a fun night at the 12 Moons Asian Bistro at the Snoqualmie Casino.

While we’ve been frequent patrons at the steakhouse, Vista, we’d never tried out 12 Moons before. Unlike Vista, they don’t take reservations, but we didn’t have to wait long for a table for six on Saturday night.

The first thing you notice when rounding the corner from the waiting area is the stunning views of the valley out the floor-to-ceiling windows that line two dining room walls. The tables are nicely spaced, so you don’t feel on top of other diners, and the restaurant has a modern, stylish ambiance.

We were quickly brought water, complimentary tea and delicious Taro chips before being greeted by our fabulous server Betty.

12 Moons menu is extensive and was somewhat unfamiliar to a few sushi novices, but Betty expertly helped us navigate new terms to choose a few appetizers and drinks.

Our drinks appeared first, and our friend Cher described her Yuzu Mule-Ketel one vodka, yuzu puree, lemon & ginger beer as “refreshing” in its pretty coppery cup. I had a Pear Sake Martini, which tasted like summer and was almost too pretty to drink, but somehow, I managed.

After a short wait, we were served Gyoza (Japanese Potstickers) with blended pork and chicken filling, scallions, dipping sauce, flash-fried Fire Dusted Calamari with pepper dusting, and spicy mayo, lemon, scallions and Steamed Edamame with sea salt. My personal favorite was the Gyoza (and those YUMMY Taro chips), but the six of us made quick work of everything and cleaned our plates.

Shortly after we finished our appetizers, the table was cleared, and the main course arrived. My first impression was that the portions were generous and the food beautifully plated.

My friend Jack and I each had the Wok Fried Mongolian with beef and chicken-onion, scallions, garlic, sambal, sesame oil, fried noodle, jasmine rice, and pickled chilies.  I recommend not eating the peppers, but I agree with Jack when he said the “quality, freshness and sear was something not found anywhere else.”

Jack’s wife Dora had the BBQ Duck Don-roast duck quarter, plum sauce, scallions, cilantro, sesame seeds, and rice- and declared the duck juicy, the skin perfectly cooked, and the plum sauce great.

Friends Cher & Anvil had Shrimp Tempura Rolls– tempura shrimp, spicy mayo, sesame, unagi sauce-they called “crispy and delicious,” and the Chow Mein- deep fried or stir-fried, bean sprouts, shimeji mushrooms, onions, scallions, oyster sauce-that Anvil said was “different from any that I’ve had, and I couldn’t stop eating it.”

Lastly, my significant other over-ordered a tad and got the Avalanche– fried avocado cream cheese roll, crab and scallop baked topping, spicy mayo, tobiko, scallions, unagi sauce and Las Vegas Rolls– red crab, tempura shrimp, avocado, cucumber, cream cheese, spicy tuna, tempura crumble, spicy mayo, unagi sauce-which he deemed “yummy,” and that lasted us well into the next day as tasty leftovers.

At some point, restaurant manager John Lennstrom stopped by the table to check if we were doing well, and server Betty was attentive throughout the meal, refilling waters and bringing more beverages. Why someone even arranged for a rainbow that persisted for more than an hour, making for a perfect evening.

Thanks, 12 Moons, Betty and John! We’ll be back for sure!

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