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Metropolitan Grille...a recent visit from an LA Hound

Best steak in town, don't insult Seattle in such a manner....this place is a BIG JOKE !!!!! Words cannot begin to describe the overrated aura of this establishment. And let me say, I haven't searched the PacNWest board, so not sure if this is a hound fav. or not, but thought I'd give my two cents at least. Reservations at 8:15 on a Thursday, party of 7, we weren't even approached about being seated until 9:45. Finally got menus at 10:15. It was a business dinner, so we couldn't pull a fit and storm out, we had clients to impress. Ordered, the basics, steak/lamb/waitstaff told head of table to avoid seafood in the place as it was a steak house for a reason....thanks after we just took your recommend. on the Fruit de Mer platter. Anyway, wine steward arrived, we ordered a couple of very nice bottles, surprise only one bottle in house....there will be more tomorrow says the steward. He makes another recommendation for the second bottle. Places clean glasses down all around, then proceeds to mix the two wines in several guests' glasses. Again, trying to impress not throwing a fit,, I would have blown the roof off. Tables' entrees arrive, most of the steaks are overcooked (don't forget, their medium rare is everyone elses medium the waitstaff claims). Oh, and they ran out of baked potatoes, all that is left are the brickish "mashed" glop that they try and pass off as edible.

A couple of us sent the steaks back.....at 55 bucks a pop it should feel like an orgasm in your mouth. 40 minutes later, the reorders were delivered, the time is now around 11:30. Guests' request for dessert were honored, soupy bananas foster and burnt caramel. Guess what, they are a steak house for a reason, they don't know a thing about desserts. Watier's parting words as he dropped the 1500 dollar check was.....we cut you some slack and comped the bananas. A parting trip to the bathrrom was breathtaking, I've seen cleaner johns on a New York contruction site after Buffalo wing night.

Do yourselves a favor.................STAY AWAY FROM THIS PLACE, ITS NAME IS FAR BETTER THAN THE ACTUAL EXPERIENCE. RIP Metropolitan Grille.

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  1. Odd, we haven't gone back to the Met since the same thing happened to us a number of years ago. Jaks is far more consistant and far less expensive.

    1 Reply
    1. re: fiddlerose2

      I wouldn't recommend Jak's-it's mediocre (everything, from the bread to potato to steak) at best. I can do way better at home.

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      1. Thanks for your report...maybe next time you have clients, try for Canlis, Waterfront Grill, El Gaucho...PS where would you take clients in LA?

        9 Replies
        1. re: barleywino

          Hmmm...while i agree with eternalX's suggestions, I cannot recommend Canlis or El Gaucho, based on the EXACT issues discussed, and similar staff actions/reactions.
          I've heard many reports that Canlis' food is mediocre at best, and their staff snotty. You're paying for the name, view, and wine list. Gaucho's steaks/chops have been excellent, but their sides are poor/overpriced. But this was the Gaucho Clincher: While I knew the correct stem to serve my Massena '11th Hour' 2002 in(brought my own btl. and paid $20 corkage), my Sommelier argued with me, telling me I was wrong, the correct stem was a PINOT NOIR, NOT a Shiraz/Grenache stem. Well, maybe I'm not too bright, but I can certainly tell the diff between stems and wines.
          Once the Somm. left me feeling like an idiot, I called another Somm. over, and ordered the correct stems. Since it was my bday, I didn't want to escalate the issue, and didn't complain to the mgr.--but i should've(my bad).

          Personally, I've had excellent service, steak, and sides at Daniel's Broiler several times, but the last was about 2 years ago, so I'm not sure what's doing now.

          1. re: SeaSybarite

            Canlis' food is nothing to write home about (except their Wagyu steak imo) but i have found their service to be nothing but gracious and generous. There may be a certain reverse snobbery at play with some reports, best to go and judge for yourself. One might also wonder whether the type of service or level of formality which would be appropriate or acceptable for a dinner with clients, might not be appropriate or acceptable for a relaxed night out, and vice versa? Restaurants that i might take a client to, given their expectations and tastes, are usually quite different from restaurants i would go to for my own dining pleasure.

            1. re: SeaSybarite

              Ya know, I've had great steaks and service at Daniel's Broiler as well at both the Bellevue and Seattle locations.

              (and I didn't recommend Canlis or EG :))

              1. re: eternalX

                Oh, i wasn't as clear as i meant to be, but i combined your comments with barleywino's. Apologies. :)

                If i was to choose which Daniel's to suggest, i suggest The Bellevue location, for the amazing view. I recall taking a client to lunch when the Blue Angels practiced, and it was a serious hit with everyone.

              2. re: SeaSybarite

                I had planned to lodge a Canlis defense post anyways, and here is as good as anywhere.

                SeaSybarite's two-sentence dismissal of the venerable Aurora sextegenarian summarizes many complaints I have read here. I visited Canlis a couple weeks ago, and everything I experienced suggests most of these barbs are unfounded (save for the small matter of dead presidents).

                My companion and I first enjoyed well-mixed cocktails, hers made of white peach, sparkling wine and sage, a remarkable combination of flavors that shows the old bird is not shying from innovations. Did they jump on the pre-prohibition cocktail craze later than Zigzag, et al? Maybe.

                We had oysters, names I can't remember but all were hard to find, redolent of sea and perfectly schucked with a restrained but interesting migonette. The canlis salad was done for old time's sake; I could have ordered better, but it was more than palatable. The entrees (copper river and lambchops with couscous, chard and pancetta jus) were both as good or better than any dish I've had at Union, Harvest Vine, Rover's--each of which I would also happily defend--maybe others (on only a few visits). The sauces, one involving buerre blanc, the other cheese and jus, showed amazing consistencies, and suggested careful techniques, in a real french multi-pan sort of way. The grand marinier souffle was as good as I've had at several french places in NYC or DC. Maybe I'm a traditionalist (but you'll catch me eating in a taco bus on the regular; I'm surely not a Canlis groupie, too rich for my blood).

                However, what really sets Canlis apart is the service. There is an artful behind-the-scenes coordination of the staff that doesn't really exist at any other place in this city. The sommelier handled the award-winning wine book very well, and convinced a knowledgeable diner to take a plunge on an unusual pairing (n. rhone syrah with salmon and lamb) that really paid dividends. Dishes are cleared, glasses are filled, wine is decanted, all with polished efficiency and care; my date is a tea fan who relished the fancy olfactory selection bit. In the exceedingly (and wonderfully) casual culture of Seattle, this kind of thing is quite unique. Some could fairly percieve it as theatre or doting, but I appreciated it.

                Was it over the top expensive per calorie? Certainy (but not by NYC or European standards). Are there still a few bored, frowning bluebloods hanging about? Probably. Still, this was the best meal I've had here in six months. As this young city grows older, it'll be increasingly glad that Canlis is still there.

                1. re: equinoise

                  well put. I went to Canlis once with a couple friends, one of whom had just gotten off the plane and was wearing shorts and a fishing vest, and the host and staff were perfectly gracious and welcoming, gave us a nice window seat even. No snobbery there. My friends had a very enjoyable time there and even took pictures to remember the occasion.

                  1. re: equinoise

                    Please note I was referring to reports I've received, as I said. Thanks for posting a positive report for Canlis, as I haven't seen many.

                    1. re: SeaSybarite

                      Ah, the quintessential Seattle passive aggressive answer, thanks for the positive input, we just don’t see many. Rather sums up the frequent comments on the service and quality at the Met. Grill something it seems the management at Canlis has a handle on. Oh and the management at Jaks as well.

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