401 PRIME - Another go
Return trip #1 for me to the lounge at 401 PRIME.
Most of you know I am a gin girl. But the last time we were at 401 Prime, Alex and I tried the garnish for the Prime Martini, which is a vodka martini with bleu cheese-coated caper berries. So I had to start the night off with one as I waited for Graham to find a parking spot and join me. While I still prefer a gin martini, this was a great start to the evening.
Once Graham joined me and ordered a drink (the Japanese Old Fashioned) we placed an order for the seafood tower. Before that arrived, we were treated to popovers and herbed butter. Sadly, the popovers were not hot and the butter was cold and hard. Not quite the same experience as the first time. The butter also had a slightly “refrigerated” taste. To be fair, we were coming in on a Tuesday evening at 7 pm. Not exactly prime time for dining.
The seafood tower arrived, consisting of prawns, oysters, king crab, lobster, and salmon rillette. It was underwhelming for the price. I was really looking for some flavor and the only thing that had any real flavor without adding a sauce was the rillette (though it is spelled riette on the menu). I normally find crab and lobster to have a sweetness to them that was missing here. And I forgot to ask the source of the oysters, which I meant to after the last time.
We moved on to two tried and proven dishes: the miso bacon and avocado smoked salmon toast. Both winners, once again. Your mouth will start watering just from the scent of the miso bacon as it is placed down on the table. And the taste matches the expectation. The avocado-smoked salmon toast is also fantastic, especially paired with the pickled radishes.
Onto the desserts – we ordered brandies. Graham had the crème brûlée and I ordered the poached pear. The dessert course was a huge win. The crème brûlée had a satisfying crack and the poached pear was served with a blackberry lime sorbet that was light and refreshing, along with fresh berries. I never finish dessert, ever, but I finished this one.
Once again, the service was impeccable. There was a minor mix-up on the bill that was quickly resolved. Our server tonight was friendly and personable. Our server from the last visit came over to say hello. As a bonus, a former member of the Amorette team was in the lounge having a drink and came over to say hi, too!
The drinks and desserts are top-notch. The service is fantastic. I still have to come back here for dinner to try an actual meal. This is a steakhouse, after all, and I have yet to have had a piece of beef here. Soon, though!