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“Plenty of other Steak Houses with Better Service and Food in Baltimore City” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Prime Steakhouse - CLOSED

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Prime Steakhouse
1719 Eastern Ave, Baltimore, MD 21231-2421 (Fells Point)
410-276-2675
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Price range: $31 - $50
Cuisines: Steakhouse
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Neighborhood: Fells Point
Baltimore, Maryland
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Plenty of other Steak Houses with Better Service and Food in Baltimore City”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2011

Where to begin...Prime missed the mark before we even stepped foot in the restaurant or sat at the table.

RESERVATIONS: I had called a week prior to book a reservation for 2 @ 8pm on a Tuesday. I made the reservation through the website. I received a call a couple of days later (Superbowl Sunday) telling me that the restaurant is not open on Tuesdays (even though it says they are on the website) and that I need to call back to reschedule for a different day. By time I received the call, it was 10pm on a Sunday so I would have to wait until Wednesday (the day that I was now planning on going) to physically call. In the meantime, I scheduled through the website. On Wednesday I started calling at 5pm to make sure our reservation was confirmed and I was not able to get anyone to answer the phone until 5:45pm. There is nothing more unsettling than not knowing whether you have an actual reservation or not. I was told it was confirmed. Great.

SERVICE: Arrived at 8pm for our 8pm reservation. We were greeted by the Bartender, who happened to also be the Manager, Busser, Hostess, Food Runner, and Server that evening. She was very nice in greeting us and mentioned that some tables had not gotten up yet so it would be just a little bit before we could be seated. I understood and was okay with that. However, I didn't realize that a little bit, meant 40 minutes. We patiently waited and were eventually seated by her. We were seated with an empty glass of water and my friend had no drink in hand. Instead of asking us if we would like something to drink, she dropped the menus and walked away. From that point forward, EVERYONE in the restaurant ignored us (her and the two other servers) and avoided eye contact with us for literally, the next 20 minutes. It does not take rocket science to see that we had not been served yet. One glass on the table and menus still on the table. The dining room is fairly small, so it's not like we could be "missed". It also was not busy...maybe 10 tables total. It seemed as though each server was only focused on their own table and inattentive to anything else. I used to work in the restaurant business and when I saw people sitting without being served I'd grab their drinks and let them know someone would be with them shortly.The only positive thing was that we knew what we'd want to order since we had ample time to review the menu. After 20 minutes..now 9pm, the Bartender/Server etc. came to our table, very briefly apologized, and greeted us with "we're out of filet". That's the one thing that I wanted on the menu so I had to settle for ordering the NY Strip. It was very irritating to see another couple get seated right after us and for their server to greet them right away.

FOOD: My friend ordered the corn soup, the rib eye, and the mac and cheese. I ordered the corn soup, NY Strip, and cheese grits. We also ordered the fries. Out came the fries and out came the soup, but only one bowl of soup. It was actually a blessing in disguise because the corn soup with Maryland Lump Crabmeat was ample for two. The corn soup had a nice sweet flavor and the crab cake had an interesting flavor of horseradish. The steaks came out while we were still working on the soup, which was fine because the earlier I can start digesting the red meat .... 9:30pm, the better. Both qualities of meat were fairly decent but like another reviewer, I felt they were seasoned the exact same way. Some ends of my NY strip were tough and I actually felt like it was a bit overseasoned/over salted. The cheese grits were alright but didn't do it for me and my friend's mac and cheese was bland. Our server was a bit more attentive towards the end of the meal for filling water and seeing if we wanted dessert. We skipped on dessert because frankly, we wanted to get out of there. We ended up grabbing dessert and a drink somewhere else in Fells.

I was really looking forward to trying PRIME (watched Timothy Dean on Top Chef like everyone else) and when Prime was on Groupon it gave me a reason to actually pay a visit as opposed to the hundreds of other restaurants in Baltimore. I had previously read the Yelp reviews so I was a bit nervous but I know everyone has different experiences. Unfortunately I had a poor one. The service was poor and the food may have tasted better if I didn't have such a poor taste in my mouth from the service. The pricing for their steaks is almost similar to Ruth's Chris and the service there is MUCH better; and that's coming from someone who likes to support small businesses. I am sorry to say I will not recommend this place and I will never spend my money here again. I'm not sure how a restaurant can last with these kinds of experiences going on.

  • Visited February 2011
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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9 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    1
    1
    1
    1
    5
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Baltimore, Maryland
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Save your money even if it is a coupon”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2011

We had a horrible experience after buying a Groupon. All of the horrible reviews on this place are true. I would bet that the positive reviews are Chef Dean himself or his employees. His business is failing and that’s because he is cheaply running it in all facets from valet to the employees to the ingredients and then charging as if it is a 5 star restaurant. Stay away.

  • Visited July 2011
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LindsayD72
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“AMAZING food, a bit overpriced, don't go for the drinks or the service”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2011

The ambiance of the restaurant was at first, very strange. They appeared very understaffed and no one greeted us until we were walking through the restaurant section looking for a hostess stand and a server asked us to wait back in the bar and she'd be right with us. Our reservation was at 7 but we weren't seated until 7:30 and the same server who was in the dining room, was then bar tending and trying to keep up with drinks for all of the people waiting for their reservations to be ready. The dining room wasn't nearly full so that made it even more odd. The server/bartender/hostess also had to borrow my menu shortly after giving it to me so she could see what was in the drink another person had just ordered. I overheard her say she just started last Monday.

The food was AMAZING. I mean, I have never tasted fish that buttery and delectable. Everything was presented beautifully and uniquely. Also, a huge bonus for me as a Top Chef fan was seeing Timothy Dean walk out and right by me to a server station!! I loved him on the show, he seemed like such a sweet guy that could really cook a fish or steak. My friend got the rib eye and was head over heels. Her garlic mashed potatoes were amazing as well. I ordered the sea bass and let me tell you, that is my new standard for gourmet fish. It was unlike anything I'd ever had before. We also started with the corn soup and crabcake, respectively and both of us noted interesting flavors and textures in both items that we hadn't experienced before but very much enjoyed.

The drinks were only okay - the wine list could be upgraded and the primejotio that sounded delicous and promised strawberry flavor turned out to be weak and mild in flavor.

The service, as mentioned before, needs work. After my appetizer was cleared along with my fork, another was not brought. My water glass sat unfilled for a long time. Both of these things I had to bring to the attention of the server. At the end of the meal, another server appeared confused and came and filled our water glasses and then apologized halfway through and realized he wasn't at a table that had just sat - we were about to leave. As a successful server for many years, these are simple things that customers expect and should have been easy to provide.

The decor was fancy meets run down. There were many places where the paint could be touched up but at first glance, the restaurant is beautiful - the wall decor is wonderful and the tables and chairs and very chic. The womens restroom is in desperate need of a coat of paint and the air freshener smell was so overpowering that it interfered with my sense of taste for a bit. I would remove the auto air freshener and place a few bunches of eucalyptus in there instead or something.

All in all though - this restaurant should survive for its food alone, but Tim will need to upgrade his staff and buy some paint.

  • Visited February 2011
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Baltimore, Maryland
1 review
“Don't waste your money.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2011

I'm a Groupon addict and when I saw one offered for Prime, I jumped on it. I was quite disappointed. I had a reservation for 5:00 (the last one available) and showed up to an empty restaurant, except for 2 other small parties trying to get a table. When the hostess finally arrived, she rudely told the first party that the restaurant was fully booked and if they didn't have a reservation, they couldn't eat there. We were then brusquely seated. After several minutes our waiter finally arrived to introduce himself and let us know he would be with us in a moment. We were his only table so were a bit perplexed at why he couldn't at least take our drink orders. By the time he returned with water to take our drink order, he didn't notice our menus were stacked on one end of the table and we were ready to order our meal.
Two of us ordered corn soup with lump crab for appetizers and the third ordered warm spinach salad. I had originally ordered the lobster bisque but was steered toward the corn and crab soup. When the soup arrived, it was a very small crab cake in a large bowl with confetti of what appeared to be carrots, zucchini and yellow squash around it. The hot corn soup was poured over. The soup was not a chowder, as described, but a runny soup. It was too sweet and what a shame because it hid the sweetness of the crab. The crab cakes immediately deconstructed into a couple of lumps of crap with soggy bits of crab cake filler and mustard. The spinach salad looked and smelled wonderful but was too large for an appetizer portion (well, so were the soups) and the long stems weren't cut off the spinach.
For entrees, two of us ordered the 16 ounce, 21 day, dry aged ribeyes. They arrived set in the center of the gigantic plates. If they were dry aged for 3 weeks, they must have been shoe leather to begin because they were still pretty tough. The steaks were terribly underseasoned and lacked flavor of any kind, really. We ordered garlic mashed potatoes, which tasted okay but were runny. Also on order was creamed spinach. Again, the stems weren't cut off and the dish was terribly over-salted. Our other friend ordered the lobster macaroni and cheese which was a giant bowl of macaroni and cheese with a couple of small bits of lobster on top. After the mashed potatoes got cold, they set up to a very nice consistency.
There was no bread brought to the table or even offered. That doesn't really bother me but I find it unusual that there wasn't some kind of amuse bouche offered at a 'fine dining' establishment. The food was not seasoned well and for the things that needed it, we were out of luck, since there was no salt or pepper on the table. The server was friendly and attentive but poorly trained for a 'fine dining' establishment (not his fault).
Lots of little things added up to make this a very disappointing meal. I won't be back and I won't recommend it to others.

  • Visited February 2011
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baltimore, Maryland
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Really Bad”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2011

The valet at this restaurant went for an unauthorized ride in our trucked and wrecked it while driving on a suspended license. $3,000.00 worth of damage. The Owner of the restaurant refuses to take responsiblilty for hiring this guy to valet at his restaurant. He alos refuses to take responsibility for any of the damages. Don't eat here. .

Visited January 2011
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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