Food Porn: Prime 490

UPDATE: Prime 490 has since closed their doors.

I’ve realized that I have an almost “Single White Female” style love with Local Restaurant Week, some might even call it obsessive.  I’ve mentioned it more times on this blog then I’ve mentioned any single restaurant or food type.  For 2009′s fall offering, Alli and I decided to finally try out Prime 490, a restaurant we’ve been wanting to visit for a long time.  Prime’s Restaurant Week offering really stuck out; most of the fine restaurants this year are offering 3 to 4 entrees and little else.  Prime had a large selection of entree’s to choose from (over 15) and offered a complimentary glass of wine and dessert, by far one of the best deals of the week.

photo-1

Our reservations were on Monday; arriving at 5:45 the place was near empty.  We basically had our choice of seating and chose to sit in a large “horse-shoe shaped” booth.  Before I go in detail of our meal, I have to say that our service was quite lack luster.  This wasn’t an issue of sitting around and waiting to be served, that happened in a fairly timely fashion.  However, our server was quite awkward and made it painfully obvious that they wanted us to get more just our $20.09 restaurant week meal.  And while our food came out actually very quickly, our server was MIA for most of the meal.  Near the end of our dining experience, he gave my check to the wrong table (along with my credit card) and then we had to remind him about our dessert that came with the meal.  If he was a first time server, I understand he could have been nervous and I’ll forgive him for that, but this isn’t the only time I’ve heard about sub par service at Prime.

photo-2

photo-3

We decided to add to our meal with an appetizer.  We went with the Crispy Cajun Crab Cakes, and it was quite a delicious choice.  Crab Cakes for me have always been something that I’ve been dying to really enjoy.  In theory they should be one of my favorite foods, I absolutely love crab and generally anything breaded/fried should be good as well.  However, in my past experiences the crab cakes I have tried have been either mediocre in flavor, weirdly stringy, or they fall apart in a gooey mess.  They have never lived up to my high expectations.  However, Prime 490′s version were hands down the greatest crab cake I have ever eaten.  The outside was crispy and delicious and the inside had a smooth creamy texture thanks to the well mixed crab and sweet corn puree.  I can’t recommend this appetizer enough, if you visit Prime 490, spend the $10.

photo-4

photo-9

For our main meals, Alli went with the 12oz New York Strip Steak (bottom picture), served with a side of asparagus and mashed potatoes.  Alli, having recently become a steak connoisseur, thought the steak was flavorful and prepared well but nothing extravagant.  With that said, however, this was a cheaper cut of meat then what they usually serve and while it may not be a great representation of their typical beef dishes, it was obviously much better than your typical Outback or Fridays steak option (which is all a lot of us can afford these days).  The other, more expensive cuts of steak on their regular menu seem more appetizing but unfortunately they were not part of the choices on the 20$ deal restaurant week menu.

I ordered myself the Grilled Pork Tenderloin (top picture).  The picture above does not do the entree justice as it looked and smelled phenomenal.  Alli and I get asked constantly, “What is the best thing you’ve ever ate?” and after 7+ months of running this website that question is hard to answer.  Well, I can officially say that now in my Top 5 meals would be this dish.  Not only was the pork cooked to a level of juicy perfection, but was covered in Candied Green Apple Cider Glaze that was so decadent I could have eaten it for a dessert.  I’ve never been a big pork eater, and Pork Chops with Apple Sauce has always seemed weird and confusing to me.  But this meal has made me rethink my entire thoughts and preconceived notions about pork.  The portion was HUGE but I devoured the entire thing, right down to the last forkful of rice.

photo-5

Our dessert options were either a Vanilla Ice Cream Sundae or Orange Flavored Creme Brulee’.  The sundae was pretty standard, with some homemade whipped cream (overall, nothing outstanding).  The Creme Brulee was my first experience with the dessert and I sadly wasn’t too sure what I was getting myself into (I still consider myself a Foodie noob).  After cracking through the caramelized sugar, below was the creamy, pudding-like custard that was delicious.  I didn’t detect a strong orange flavor but I quickly ate the entire thing.

I normally don’t make a big deal about poor service, but it was pretty poor at Prime 490.  I wasn’t insulted or anything, but the constant mistakes and missteps did put a damper on the evening.  However the majority of our meal was, for a lack of a better term, simply fantastic, and I loved the design of the interior.  After having one of the best meals in 2009, I can’t help but recommend a visit to Prime 490 (even when they aren’t running Restaurant Week specials).  While it may seem odd to have such a high recommendation for a steak house without getting to try their top steak options, one has to remember we do not have the budget to sample the most expensive dishes most of these high end restaurants have to offer.  However, most of what we did order was fabulous (especially the crab cakes and pork tenderloin) and left us with the belief that the rest of their menu can only be better and thus we need to try to save up some money and come back asap.

Don’t let the area scare you away, it’s in a growing neighborhood of downtown.  The restaurant is located in between the west side and Allentown, off of Richmond Ave.  It’s an area that is on the upswing and is really starting to be known for its fine dining options (Left Bank is located right across the street).

Prime 490 on Urbanspoon

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes:

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong> 

This site's anti-spam requires Javascript; enable it and refresh this page to continue.

NoScript Users: Whitelist the domain services.wpspamhammer.com and refresh.