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May 13, 2009 05:54 AM

Stephen AV Calgary: Tribune re-branding?

New sign out front: "TRIB steaks- chops..."

Maybe going casual? Most people just call it the Trib, I suppose.

Any news?

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  1. The sign says TRIB - steaks chops chicken seafood wine beer spirits.

    Definite re-branding. Sounds like a little bit of everything and heard the prices are very reasonable. Like a restaurant makeunder.

    1 Reply
    1. re: ennui

      Before, during and post-boom, my main complaint about Stephen Ave is that it has too little in the way of moderately-priced restos. So this is fine by me.

      When I eat downtown I am almost always off Stephen. Chinatown, DeVille or Artigiano, Sukiyaki House (on 9th), Sahara- none are on Stephen Ave.

    2. I got the email today - lunch starting at $12
      wine tasting tonight between 5-7

      i'll give it a try - anyone know if andrew keen is still cooking here since he started parkerhouse?

      i know the manager from tribune has gone to olives....

      2 Replies
      1. re: pants

        Andrew is the Exec. Chef of CA Restaurant Enterprises(Trib, Murrieta's, ParkerHouse)...Brent Klassen is the Trib Chef on a daily basis.

        It's a re-jigging of their original concept so the menu has been refreshed, simplified, and prices are more reflective of market requirements. Seems like a Gordon Ramsay type of make-over minus the bad food and kitchen issues. They are definitely aiming for a more casual experience.

        Wine Wednesday's are back as well though I haven't been since they restarted. The Trib GM is Francois...who also runs the Cellar Wine Store across the street.

        1. re: ureviewcalgary

          Saw the menu today...

          You got it.

          Selection of steaks with veg and choice 'o potato. Flatiron, filet, etc.

          Plus the old Tribune roasts for two. Lower price points, generally speaking.

      2. Apparently the new menu is only a week old. Decor is still the same, not casual at least in the dining room downstairs: tablecloths, lots of different cutlery, tableside service for roasts. Prices are reasonable, but they were the last time too (maybe 3 years ago?) so I can't compare. Menu with prices are on their website so you can check it out for yourself.

        Dinner and service was great, we both had steaks which were cooked perfectly (blue rare really is, and not cold). The only complaints would be
        a) the sauces were way too sweet (eg. peppercorn sauce that was like marsala sauce with a few green peppercorns tossed in) but they were included (i.e. free, so you can just scrape it off if you don't like it) and
        b) the 60/70's music (I haven't heard Love Potion # 9 since I was young, maybe that's the point but I didn't like it then either).

        It was really good. We don't go downtown too often because parking is a pain but if you're in the area it's better than some of the more expensive options, I'd definitely recommend it.

        1. The Trib is hurting because of the economy and is doing what it can to survive. The management style is the old boys school style and if you compare them to "The Farm" as an example, there is a definite difference in the current success of the restaurants. The Farm has very innovative management style going on. (I use The Farm as an example, there are others such as the Vin Room etc) The Trib, and a variety of other restaurants need to change drastically to survive the current economic woes.

          4 Replies
          1. re: letus eat

            The economy here isn't THAT bad. 6.1% unemp with the highest labour participation rate BY FAR in North America is actually quite good and balanced even in "good" times.

            The name of the resto is "FARM" btw, not "The Farm."

            1. re: John Manzo

              You're right about that...

              The main thing is that so much of the expense account money has dried up. Belt tightening kills "posh" places. Most places on Stephen AV have sandwich boards out with prix fixe, specials, etc.

            2. re: letus eat

              "The management style is the old boys school style and if you compare them to "The Farm" as an example, there is a definite difference in the current success of the restaurants".
              What is this supposed to mean?? Where do you get your info from?

              1. re: criticalcritic

                Being in the food industry. Yes, different styles. But what about innovation? Think! I know that the trib as well as most other restaurants are going thru difficult times. Why are some places thriving? If you were to study management styles as well as international culinary hotspots such as Spain i think you would grasp what I am saying. Thank you John for pointing out "Farm" I am glad that is your biggest issue!!!

            3. According to a Calgary Herald article today, Tribune's sales dropped 46% the last while.

              Guess they needed to do something to stay alive.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Shazam

                Thanks Shazam. I spoke with the owner before Christmas and he said business was slowing down. The oilpatch was not spending any extra money. I also know that Centinis was finding business slow as well and they were revamping the menu. Whether they did or not, I don't know. The innovative businesses will thrive and survive.

                1. re: letus eat

                  I love Centini but it was INSANELY expensive. Good to see the changes.

                2. re: Shazam

                  I spoke with people who thought it was a jewelery shop before. At least now they will know its a restaurant.
                  I hope they kept some stuff from the old menu, it was great.