Don't waste your time or money.
Writing and reading restaurant reviews are always a little tricky, as it is so difficult to gauge where the writer’s true standpoint is. With that in mind, I will try to elaborate a little bit about where I put my husband and I and tell you a little bit about our experience at the Bloomington Chop House.
To our core, my husband and I are red meat eaters. He is a rib-eye kind of guy and I am a filet kind of gal, both medium rare of course! We really enjoy a nice, moderate (<$200) bottle of red wine and a nice piece of meat. Our favorite places for red meat in the Twin Cities are Manny’s as well as the St. Paul Grill and Kincaid’s. Nationally we never pass on Capital Grille and Ruth’s Chris. We have found Morton’s to be ok and Murray’s to be fine, as well. Pittsburgh Blue in Maple Grove is new and still trying to establish itself, but hasn’t quite figured out how to correctly cook a steak quite yet.
We decided to try the Bloomington Chop House as it was promoted during Restaurant Week (March 1-6, 2009) and they were offering a three course dinner for $30. While normally, we wouldn’t fall for such marketing, (special entrees which chefs are not used to making or purchasing, smaller portions, not “signature” items, etc.), we opted to try it out. We should have trusted our instincts, here are some thoughts:
~ We were greeted by some unhappy and unwelcoming hostess, who seemed annoyed with our reservation. She was a hostess and not a maitradee.
~ The overall atmosphere was very nice, large booths, low lighting, seemed nice and intimate.
~ Large menu that offered a range of items including both steaks and seafood.
~ Nice wine selection
~ Our server was great, but never gave us his name
~ When we mention that we were interested in looking at the prix-fixe menu, again, the hostess seemed annoyed.
~ We opted to order a little from both menus to really try out the restaurant. From the prix-fixe menu we ordered: crab cakes, lobster bisque, petite filet, rib-eye, and two chocolate lava cakes. On the regular menu we order the shrimp cocktail, and the lobster mac and cheese.
~ The shrimp cocktail was good, nice temperature and the shrimp had a nice firmness to them.
~ The crab cake was cold, but wasn’t horrible (overall, I wasn’t very impressed with the crab cake and really wouldn’t recommend it).
~ The lobster bisque wasn’t exactly warm and was just ok as well (I wouldn’t order it again).
~ The filet was not a solid piece of meat and I spent a lot of time working around the fat. Overall, it was a little overcooked (not medium rare) and had ok flavor. (Again, I wouldn’t order this again). Don’t even ask about the potato they served on the side.
~ The rib-eye was fine, nothing to really get excited about.
~ The lobster mac and cheese didn’t appear to have any lobster in it at all (or flavor for that matter). There seemed to be some bacon chunks in it, but really wasn’t very impressive.
~ Chocolate lava cake for dessert must have been a special item on the prix-fixe menu. It was very boring with an odd texture to it. Overall, it was very underwhelming.
In the end, we spent around $250 plus the tip. Not that we were spending a ton of money, but for that restaurant, I would expect the manager to drop by and ask us about our evening. Overall, I was really disappointed with the evening and won’t return. There are a lot of really amazing restaurants in the Twin Cities, this is not one of them.
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