We tasted the secret breakfast at Napoleons casino
Monday 17th February 2020
Hull Live reporter Anna Riley tried out the midnight meal at the casino
Napoleons is a long standing institution in our city and a landmark that almost all of us will have seen in George Street whilst heading towards Witham on the fringes of industrial Hull.
No doubt it's also a place that many of us may have been in for a bet or two, or just a drink or three to continue the evening when all the other bars have closed.
The casino welcomes hundreds through its doors every week from 2pm to 6am and as well as providing people gamble and booze, some wander in after midnight for a spin on the roulette table or to try their hand at poker.
But as well as being able to have a flutter at Napoleons, it also offers a wide meal selection in its restaurant and bar area and customers can dine in style with a two or three-course menu, or just have a snack.
Something else the casino does offer though is a secret breakfast from 11pm that is not advertised on the bar menu, which only runs until 10pm.
I heard this rumour of a full English being served until late at night. So after finishing a late shift at work in the week, I decided to head over to Napoleons to find out about the clandestine offering and taste it for myself.
I must admit, I'm sure that I wasn't the regular clientele to enter Napoleons, rocking up at after half ten on my own and fully sober.
It was my first time to the casino, so I had to sign up for a member card and show my ID, and I think the staff member on the desk that was registering my details felt rather sorry for me.
She asked if I was meeting anyone and I said no and mentioned that I was just there for the food. The receptionist then looked at me rather forlornly and recommended the meal options, but said that there was no breakfast offering when I asked her about it, which left me scratching my head.
After being duly processed and told to enjoy my evening, I marched upstairs and headed for the bar area, where I looked at the food menu, that they had stopped serving anyway and couldn't see any mention of a breakfast on the list when I scanned it.
Feeling like I was asking for some sort of prohibited goods or perhaps even engaging in a drug deal, I asked the barman sheepishly
:"Erm, do you do a breakfast at all that I can order?"
Instead of being rebuffed with a funny look though, the barman said yes and rang down to order a breakfast for me with the chef, as well as one for himself, as he said he was feeling peckish as well.
It was such a strange concept, ordering a breakfast a good eight or nine hours in advance of the normal time it would be served, but a novel concept at that and something that I was more than willing to get on board with, for the originality of it, if nothing else.
After ordering a pint of coke to go with my breakfast (I was driving and had work in the morning), I took a seat at a table close to the bar and waited for my unusual meal order to come out, and had a think about where I would spend my £5 gambling voucher which came as a freebie with the meal.
Whilst I was waiting, I noticed the fancy seating area just behind me for main meals, which I was impressed with as it looked nicely laid out and like an area for a fine dining experience, which I didn't expect to see in a casino. There was a lower tier restaurant area or an upper tier which overlooks the casino floor, to let diners experience the buzz and excitement of the casino.
The bar area was also pretty packed, with people propping up the bar and guzzling back pints, tempered by older looking customers sitting at tables nearby sipping on cups of tea and coffee and regaling in their profits and losses.
A little wait ensued and my breakfast was served. It was just over £10 including my drink and came with white toast and butter, a fried egg, mushrooms, sausages, bacon and beans and it went down a treat.
The egg yolk was nice and runny just how I like it, which provided a perfect sauce to dip my toast in. The bacon was grilled to perfection and the mushrooms tasted like they had been cooked in butter and garnished with herbs, which was a tasty addition.
The only thing I wasn't too keen on was the sausages, which tasted quite cheap so I only nibbled on one of them, and I'm not a fan of cooked tomatoes, so I gave them a dodge as well.
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Feeling pretty stuffed, I then had a wander around the casino to decide what to spend my £5 voucher on. When exchanging it at the booth, I was told I could play it in the slot machines or on the tables and asked to spend it on the latter.
Armed with my chip, I had to do several laps of the floor to determine where to go, as I have absolutely no idea about gambling and haven't really done it before.
Looking at the Texas poker tables, roulette and blackjack tables, I decided to try my luck on roulette and sadly got nowhere after putting all my money on one number. The wheel span, I lost and it felt like it was over before it even began.
Not wanting to put any more money down on the tables because I was clueless as to how to gain the best shot at winning, as well as having very little in my bank account until pay day to spend with anyway, I thought it was about time to flee the scene.
I headed home to bed, feeling rather luckless, but safe in the knowledge that I had become a part of the Napoleons breakfast Illuminati.