I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was going for my Birthday dinner at Stonegrill in Vancouver. I made a reservation first and then a few days before my Birthday I figured I should check out the reviews on Urbanspoon as I always do when I dine at a new restaurant. After I read the reviews I was really unsure what to expect. The reviews were very mixed, some good, some bad and the overall average rating was fairly low (currently it’s sitting at 59% of people that liked it.)
Now as much as Urbanspoon is a fantastic site and a great tool, you do have to remember a few things when browsing all that it has to offer (these applies to ALL types of review sites.)
1. Reviewers will often base their opinions on personal taste and what they are used to.
2. Many people will critique certain things that the restaurant cannot control. For example “It was really busy and we had to wait a long time to get in” or “there wasn’t a good view.” In the case of hotels I have seen people complain about anything from the weather to the fact that there were no good restaurants close by. This really skews the ratings because people are basing their review on things that are totally irrelevant.
3. Regulars at a restaurant will rarely leave reviews because they wouldn’t think to do so. They know the place is great because they eat there all the time.
and most importantly,
4. People are ALWAYS much more likely to share a negative review than they are to share a positive review.
This all being said, let’s get to the review.
I started dinner off right…
with a half litre of Chianti…yes a half litre.
Mr. Delish had a beer as usual, I believe he went with one of the Granville Island Brewery varieties but I am not sure which one. It was fitting because the GIB is just the river from Stonegrill.
We shared an appetizer of coconut curry mussels.
The mussels were pretty big guys which some people may like but I am not a huge fan of the larger ones as they tend to be chewier. However in this case they were very tender and we both really enjoyed them.
Now for the entrees, the whole Stonegrill thing is that most of the items come served on a hot volcanic stone that you use to actually cook the meat. The only seasoning is a sprinkling of salt on the stone itself, but other than that you just get to taste the meat. They do offer different sauces to go with your meal depending on what it is that you order.
Chris chose the rack of lamb for his entree.
The rack of lamb was served with a mint sauce as well as mixed vegetables and roasted potatoes.
Chris really enjoyed searing his own food and cooking it the way he wanted. He always complains when we go to places and he asks for his steak to be rare, that it always ends up being cooked more than rare.
This way he could control it himself, and I guess he only had himself to blame if it was overcooked! haha.
I chose the New York steak and prawns.
It was served with garlic butter for the prawns as well as mixed vegetables and roasted potatoes.
The steak was super tasty although I was only able to eat half of it because it was so large. The prawns were really great cooked on the stone as well, because the stone is so hot, they cook really fast and get a nice crisp crust to them! Yum.
I did learn fairly quickly why they don’t use any oil or butter on the stone. I decided to dip my prawn into the garlic butter and THEN cook it. Bad idea. I had about 30 seconds of crazy splattering hot butter! Woops.
I guess that shows just how hot that stone is!
We opted out of dessert because we were both very full after our dinner but we did take some time to sip wine and check out the beautiful view of False Creek and Granville island.
There is lots of action out on the water so you can check out all the boats and kayaks floating by as you enjoy your dinner.
All in all it was an excellent dinner. I think the price was in comparison to other mid priced steak houses so I disagree with the reviews that said it was too expensive for what it was.
The service was prompt and friendly, but not pushy or overbearing.
The view was excellent the scenery tied in with the ambiance makes it a great place to go for a date or romantic dinner.
My only complaint would be that a table nearby was a family eating dinner with their kids, and the kids were all playing on cell phones or electronic games, and they had the volume turned on so for half of our dinner all we could hear was beeping and music from their games. We could have easily complained but by the time it annoyed us to the point of bringing it up to the waiter, the family was on their way out of the restaurant.
Other than that, everything was great and I would definitely recommend this restaurant to a friend!
I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend and I will be back next week with some new recipes.