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“All style, little substance.”

The Prime Chophouse and Wine Bar
Ranked #30 of 144 Restaurants in Courtenay
Price range: $7 - $23
Cuisines: Steakhouse
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, Reservations
Courtenay, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“All style, little substance.”
Reviewed October 21, 2012

High expectations for this ambitious venue, in a restaurant scene that needs some updating. We went with an open mind, hoping to just have a few drinks and appys. Our experience prompted this review.
Prime has many things right - covered entrance for dropping off guests, presentable hosts, choice of dining environments and modern luxurious decor. However, the core of any dining experience has to be the food and the service. The menus, when they eventually made it to us were fairly predictable steakhouse fare. The much touted wine menu was an exercise in boredom (Big does not necessarily equal good). When we reached the hour mark after ordering, and no sign of any food, it was hard to excuse. The server was apologetic and very pleasant but waited to be proactive until we were asking about our food.
The kitchen should have warned the staff about wait times, they could have sent some bread/appy to tide the table over and especially, the manager should have stopped by to talk to us. Three fails. The food itself had some wins - but half of our food was pretty generic and over-sized.
If the plan was to emulate a corporate steakhouse, they succeeded. If they want my recommendation, they will have to do more than build a pretty building.

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank upislander
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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315 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Courtenay, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Another Steak House”
Reviewed October 20, 2012

The building is spectacular in looks, very appealing and decorative. We sat in the dining area in a booth which was good as far as size, height of table to seats etc. There was a group of about 8 ladies obviously celebrating something and I found the noise level very loud as did others. This was noticeable as people were getting up to see who was making the noise. So as great as the building looks, i am not certain as to how well it works.

We had heard about staff issues and service from friends so we didn't go there until we felt they had enough time to sort out a new operation. The staff were attentive and friendly, and service was about what you expect. They checked back to ensure things were ok and management also checked, so they were doing what was right in that regard.


The food was ok . We were two couples and had steaks and rack of lamb. Two had the same sauce on the steak so in fairness we did not try all the combinations of sauces they have for their steaks. For a high end steak house though I would want to be going away saying that for special occasions I would definitely go back. I didn't. I have eaten in some steak houses in Vancouver and New York and for not a lot of difference in price the experience was very different.

So all in all not rushing back but when I do go back it will be to the lounge to try tapas and a glass of wine.

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank George B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“Meh....”
Reviewed October 19, 2012 via mobile

Overpriced mediocre food, mediocre service, dull menu. I really don't think the steak was worth it and I hate that normal human sized portions aren't available. Clearly designed for Alberta people who shop at Costco.... Notthe real folks in the Comox Valley who appreciate good local food.

Helpful?
Thank jcrucil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Great resturant ,Food and Service”
Reviewed October 13, 2012

great food,first class, friendly staff, New resturant which is a World class facility, No reading Glasses for oldies to borrow to read extra fine print in Menu and dark( should be much larger for oldies who will be your largest segment of the market,those with large expendable incomes),but soon to be corrected by owner and staff.

Kind Regards,
Don Bunbury
dbunbury@telus.net
604-786-2293(cell)

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
Thank Donald B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Callicoon, New York
Level 6 Contributor
126 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
“Excellent steakhouse”
Reviewed October 11, 2012

The food was very good, service was prompt and courteous, and prices were reasonable. Very nice atmosphere. Good wine list. We will definitely be back.

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank 69WorldTraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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