Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.10mi
  2. Distance: 0.12mi
  3. Distance: 0.28mi
  4. Distance: 0.28mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.10mi
  2. Distance: 0.12mi
  3. Distance: 0.28mi
  4. Distance: 0.28mi

About Prelude at McCaw Hall

Welcome to Prelude - on the Promenade Level of Marion Oliver McCaw Hall at Seattle Center. Sophistication, artistry and signature dishes designed by our Executive Chef await your visit. Prelude features the freshest local produce, artisanal products, a large selection of Northwest wines by the glass and half bottle, and our sublime take on cuisine executed by the SAVOR culinary team. Our seasonal menus provide the perfect prelude to a Pacific Northwest Ballet or Seattle Opera performance - or offer an exceptional dining experience on their own. Dinner reservations are encouraged prior to show time. Prelude also offers Brunch before Sunday shows and Intermission.

321 Mercer Street
Seattle, WA 98109
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Contemporary American

Hours of Operation:
Dinner/Brunch:
Prelude opens 2.5 hours (Opera performances) and 2 hours (Ballet performances) prior show start.


Cross Street:
4th & Mercer

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(206) 615-0404

Website:
http://www.savorsmgmccawhall.com/

Catering:
Catering by SAVOR... is not limited to McCaw Hall. We apply our extensive experience in both large and small-scale events at most any location in the Seattle Area. For over 20 years, our culinary team and experienced sales staff have created custom menus and unique special events to successfully support world-class events for small groups or thousands of people. You can be sure we have the expertise to handle every detail of your event, from site coordination, to rentals, to securing a pleasant service staff. Contact us to learn more.

Private Party Facilities:
Opportunities for private events abound at McCaw hall. Whether planning a large party in the dining room or looking for a private space, or larger events our team is experienced and ready to handle the details for you. For larger parties please ask for our Catering Director and we will be happy to put you in contact with her.

Private Party Contact:
Susan Cuturilo: (206) 615-0254

Additional:
Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Prelude at McCaw Hall Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

3.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

3.5

service

3.6

ambience

3.7

value

3.0

noise

Moderate

67% would recommend it to a friend

Pre/post Theatre (43)
Special Occasion (6)
Sunday Lunch (6)
See All
Good for a Date (5)
Creative Cuisine (5)
Tasting Menu (3)
Notable Wine List (3)
Quiet Conversation (3)
Quick Bite (3)
Fit for Foodies (2)
Afternoon Coffee (2)
Good for Groups (2)
Local Ingredients (1)
Hot Spot (1)
Casual (1)
Good Vegetarian Options (1)
Romantic (1)
Healthy (1)
Seasonal (1)
Live Music (1)
Handcrafted Cocktails (1)
Business Meals (1)
People Watching (1)
Great for Brunch (1)
Worth the Drive (1)
Gluten Free Options (1)
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2148 reviews
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 (Seattle)·Dined 4 days ago

Weak menu choices; lack of flavor; overpriced. Will not return.

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food1
ambience3
service3
value1

 
·Dined 4 days ago

The food was not hot and not tasty. We had the sea bass. Our wait person , Brittany, was outstanding. She even mixed a drink that I was unfamiliar with which was excellent. The vanilla ice cream we had for dessert was good. The service was punctual and efficient.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food2
ambience3
service5
value3

 
·Dined 4 days ago

We were celebrating my wife's birthday weekend starting with dinner, opera and a stay downtown. The reservation process was easy but that's where it ended. We arrived to find the staff unable to find our reservation. Once seated the wait staff was disorganized and unattentative. We had to ask for simple things such as ice and water. Twice another tables dinners were brought to us which we poelitely refused, although we had just started our salads. As we finished our meal, we requested coffee with cream and honey. We had to remind our server about the coffee and by the time he brought the honey, the coffee was cold. The selection for non alcoholic beverages was dismal.
The convenience of being at the venue for dinner was exciting but was not what it should or could have been. On our next visit, we will find another place for dinner.

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food4
ambience3
service1
value2

 
 (Seattle)·Dined 4 days ago

Going to the opera just wouldn't be the same without having dinner here

Tags: Notable Wine List, Worth the Drive, Gluten Free Options, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Seattle)·Dined 5 days ago

This is a fabulous way to enjoy the opera especially when you have to take a ferry to get there and back. No worries about being late you can enjoy dessert during intermission atmosphere if good meals are great and I've always had wonderful service. Only downfall for me is I have to remember to make the reservation. Their new appetizers/salad table is a little pricy but excellent. I recommend it, and hope they keep it excellent way to try new tastes

Tags: People Watching, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
·Dined 5 days ago

Extremely convenient. Very nice service. Rather pricey and limited options.

Tags: Quick Bite
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food3
ambience3
service4
value1

 
 (Seattle)·Dined 5 days ago

Much better, food good, service dramatically improved

Tags: Great for Brunch
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Seattle)·Dined 5 days ago

We had eaten here many times prior to performances and have never had such a poor experience. We think the "Harvest Table" idea is a mistake. We had an incredibly inattentive waiter. The roast chicken entree which we both ordered was bland and lackluster. The paltry vegetables that accompanied it were not seasoned at all. The service was so slow that we NEVER were served our dessert. We will find some other option for the remainder of the opera season. We will not be dining here again.

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food2
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value2

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 17, 2017

Dinner (black cod) was delicious but I miss the "small plates" menu. Frequently I would rather have two "small plates" than an entree.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine
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food5
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 (Seattle)·Dined on August 17, 2017

Prelude at Seattle Opera is trying a new approach where a limited number of first course options are available at a sort of salad bar. We saw two problems with this approach at our dinner this week: 1. the selections were not as listed on the menu, and 2. the dishes with the more attractive selections were empty when we first visited the table. We returned 10 minutes later, and we then found dishes for other selections were empty. It seems obvious that Prelude must assign someone to monitor the table and re-fill serving dishes immediately as required. At present, it is most amateurish and will certainly be offputting to most guests.

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food3
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 (Seattle)·Dined on August 13, 2017

we believe the quality/quantity of the food has gone down over the time we have eaten there (over a span of 8-10 years). At the same time prices have increased thus for us lowering overall value received. And the price for a glass of wine at 10, 11, 12+/glass is very expensive. Our service this past Sunday was excellent, food arrived quickly and our server was outstanding in every way. The seating arrangement along the back corner was squeezed in so that parties coming leaving had to ask others to move so they could move in or out.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food3
ambience3
service5
value2

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 13, 2017

Our experience at Prelude before the opera was outstanding. We were so fortunate to have as our server the person who orders the wine and spirits for Prelude. She shared information about the dessert menu and the drinks, including the absolutely stellar limoncello. We would definitely return to this restaurant. It is so nice to be right in the opera house and not have to run down the street to make the curtain. Chicken pot pie--delicioso! We shall return!

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Handcrafted Cocktails
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
·Dined on August 13, 2017

The new Harvest Table was good and enjoyable; the entrees were mediocre (not well prepared) and overpriced.

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food3
ambience4
service3
value2

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 13, 2017

The food was OK, but nothing special considering the price. The new seating format was way too crowded, and the restaurant was uncomfortably noisy. We arrived on time for a 6:15 reservation and did not get seated until 6:25. The waiter was personable but not very well trained. Our aperitifs were quite slow in arriving. The rest of the service was also rather slow and a bit confused.

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food4
ambience2
service2
value3

 
·Dined on August 13, 2017

Great experience before the Opera. Unfortunately, the fish entré (black cod) was not what it should have been. Previously frozen fish or cooked improperly. Otherwise, all good.

Tags: Good for a Date, Notable Wine List, Pre/post Theatre
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food2
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 (Seattle)·Dined on August 13, 2017

Service excellent; gave us our preferred seating.
Food was less good than usual.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food2
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service5
value2

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 13, 2017

My husband and I are season ticket holders at the Seattle Opera, and on opera nights we always eat at Prelude. We've had meals that ranged from awful tomediocre to wonderful. As we come a long way, the convenience of dining in the same building where our event takes place is worth it to us.
This past Saturday we dined again at Prelude, prior to attending "Madam Butterfly." Our dinner was absolutely fabulous! We both had the black cod, served with bokchoy, shiitake mushrooms and a jade pesto. The fish was done to melt-in-your-mouth perfection. We followed up our meals with cappuccinos. I also had a fruit tart that was absolutely divine, and my husband seemed to enjoy his chocolate ganache treat. And then we got to hear the wonderful voices that sang for us. What a perfect evening!

Prelude can be spendy, but I would recommend it for speciual occasions.

Tags: Special Occasion
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food5
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 10, 2017

Overpriced, limited menu, crowded seating. Seasonal Table ran out of pate and heirloom tomatoes.

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food3
ambience3
service5
value2

vip
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 10, 2017

Madame Butterfly!!!

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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 10, 2017

We love the staff and enjoy the rotating menu. The wine list is very good and the food is always fresh and interesting.

Tags: Good for Groups, Tasting Menu, Special Occasion
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food4
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service5
value4

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on August 10, 2017

The food was excellent but the menu vey limited. I did not like the harvest table as the only salad selection and the entrées were also limited.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience4
service3
value3

 
·Dined on August 10, 2017

Service mediocre; server was pleasant, but we had to call for his attention each time we needed something--he never approached our table to ask if we needed anything. Food mediocre to poor--dry chicken no starch item, soggy vegetable, lukewarm. Dessert was good. Overpriced for the quantity and quality; much better value at neighboring restaurants.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food2
ambience3
service2
value1

 
·Dined on August 6, 2017

The two of us had differing views. I felt that food was excellent (pot pie) and service slow. It was perhaps sort of to be expected, on opera day, but when we inquired with the server he was uncommunicative. No one even came to our table for the first 15 minutes. When he finally did speak he was abrupt & sort of rude. A lady then came be our server. It took quite some time for the food to arrive. My cousin said her food was "OK" (the sliders), and she was quite upset at the service. We were able to finish before we needed to dash to get our seats, but it was a bit rushed. We had 12:45 seating for the 2:00 show, so we should have had plenty of time.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food4
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service3
value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

We had lunch at Prelude prior to attending an opera matinee on August 6. We had reservations, but we told we had to wait because the tables needed cleaning. We waited and someone w/o reservations was seated ahead of us. And when we were seated, there were numerous empty tables around us. So the seating needs work. I require gluten-free so could not order any of the main courses, but the enhanced salad bar was excellent! And, as usual, the desserts were excellent. Wait service was obviously understaffed or undertrained, or maybe just a bit frazzled.
Prelude is a good restaurant for persons who want the convenience when attending events at McCaw Hall and my husband and I, plus friends, have eaten there on many occasions over many opera seasons, but I would not recommend this restaurant otherwise, when there are so many other options in the area.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

I often eat at Prelude prior to the Opera, and so I was surprised to discover the wait staff seemed to be overbooked with tables and struggled to keep up. I also missed the appetizer options that were removed in favor of a table with multiple options that I was not interested in eating.

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food3
ambience3
service3
value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

None of the items I have not checked above accept being tapped to check.
I only eat at Prelude prior to events at McCaw Hall. The food is okay at best, and certainly not comparable to other restaurants in that price range. The buffet service is okay, but not comfortable for persons with canes, which is a large clientele at McCaw. The non-buffet choices are very limited.

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food3
ambience4
service3
value4

 
·Dined on August 6, 2017

No choice above really addresses Prelude, which is the restaurant inside McCaw Hall. I would not choose Prelude for a casual meal, because of its location. However, it is the ideal spot for lunch or dinner prior to a performance at McCaw. It is elegant, service on my last visit was not up to the usual standard, which is generally excellent (new waiter, I think), and the menu provides multiple choices. Somewhat pricey, but quality is excellent. The staff are geared toward people attending performances, so service is generally quick. and it is possible to return at the interval for dessert - a great way to stretch out your experience!

Tags: Quiet Conversation
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food4
ambience5
service3
value3

 
·Dined on August 6, 2017

The service is always slow but this time it was atrocious. The server didn't even bother to check with us whether we were planning to attend a pre-performance talk. She was just chatting with other diners and completely ignored our table. I needed to basically corner another server and demand a check. We skipped the desert because it'd make it impossible to attend the talk. We spent almost 1 and a half hours on a simple lunch. This is unacceptable. We will not dine again even that the location is perfect.

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food4
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service1
value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

Fine restaurant before the Opera. Wonderful location in the main floor of the Opera House. Main problem is that there are few if any gluten free options for truly gluten sensitive individuals.

Tags: Sunday Lunch
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food2
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 (Cincinnati)·Dined on August 6, 2017

Maybe staff was overwhelmed as it was opening night. Others came later than me (we were seated at 6:10 pm) and they were served before us. I was concerned about getting out in time for the opera and desert was simply out of the question. The food was excellent, though we weren't checked on or encouraged that our seafood entre would arrive even after 30+ minutes of waiting. It was my first time there and I'll likely try it once more before eating elsewhere.

Tags: Afternoon Coffee, Healthy
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food5
ambience4
service1
value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

We were disappointed. Last season it was a fine dining restaurant, but this time main course dishes (our party tried 3 different dishes) were much simpler. But prices remained as high as in a fine dining restaurant.
We also didn't like the idea of a Chef's Table salads and appetizers. The menu stated that there would be a pate among the selections, and it was the main reason we decided to try it. But when we came to the Chef's Table there was no pate. And the salads were not worth the price.

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food2
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 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

This was truly one of the worst dining experiences we've ever had. I realize there was a new system in place and we knew there would be some hiccups, but it was a disaster. It was confusing upon arrival, people with reservations got no check-in priority so it was a long wait, our table was in a sort of hallway (table 82, I believe), it took 50 minutes to get our entrees (after my husband asked the manger in desperation), one of our dishes was terrible (the sea bass...really overwhelming amounts of dill and that yellow sauce which repeated throughout the entire opera), and then it took another 20-30 minutes to get and pay our bill, leaving us rushing to our seats. We appreciated the extra glass of wine the manager gave us as we had ordered the wine pairings and our glasses were empty before the food came, but it wasn't enough. We felt like we were on an episode of Hell's Kitchen. There was no apology from the manager for the lousy experience. Our server was sweet and apologized but he seemed utterly un-trained and unable to do much. From looking around and talking to other diners, the only people who seemed to have a halfway decent experience were the guests who paid half as much for the new chef's table. Ordering an overpriced entree got us no bread, terrible service, poor food, and no option to order a basic green salad. You all have a lot of work to do. We won't be back anytime soon.

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 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

We have used Prelude before an opera for several years. We felt that convenience made up for the overpriced menu. However last Saturday was a disaster! Their change in format to a Salad & Appetizer "table" did not work. No traffic pattern was obvious, the supply of food was not kept up, the dishes were not labeled - it was chaos! Also the kitchen was slow, the Steamed fish was mushy, and the apparently only one computer station for the waiters to print tabs and process credit cards was badly backed up at a time when most customers were anxious to get to their seats before curtain time.
Management has a lot of issues to resolve, and until they do we will eat elsewhere.

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food3
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value3

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

The menu has been extensively changed, in that there is only a buffet instead of salads. That doesn't allow me to break up my dinner and eat a salad at the 30 minute intermission. We ordered coffee and tea to be ready at the intermission, and it took 10 minutes to get it! The menu is too limited.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food3
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 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

Harvest Table needs to be rethought. Too expensive for simply soup or salad.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food3
ambience3
service2
value2

vip
 (Jackson Hole)·Dined on August 6, 2017

Usually superbly run restaurant turned into service nightmare Saturday -- Opera opening night. Apparent management changes destroyed Prelude's ability to prepare and serve food on a timely fashion. Arrived 5:25 for a 7:30 curtain and barely made it. Food, however, was superb -- with exception of newly instituted serve-yourself appetizer table. Unlabeled plates, trays, jars, with some good non-mystery food included. Prelude has been a dependably fine pre Ballet and pre Opera restaurant. Please end the operational experiments so we customers can enjoy the experience again.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food5
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service1
value3

 
 (Austin)·Dined on August 6, 2017

We regularly dine before the Opera, and particularly like the convenience. This season for the opening of the opera they introduced a 'harvest table' which was a buffet for salads, cheeses for an extra $15pp. We didn't like it for several reasons; first being dressed in nice clothes for the opera it was very messy to reach across the table for various platters and dripping salad dressing. People that ordered this table only were filling plates like trenchers so we had to wait several time for platters to be replenished, Finally there was the issue of food sanitation, nothing on ice, and lots of strange hands reaching into the open table.
We like the restaurant and while it's expensive, we understand that its a single seating venue, and like parking once for an evening.
Our advice, though, is to skip the salad/harvest table; we hope they discontinue this.

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food3
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 (Seattle)·Dined on August 6, 2017

Until this year, we enjjoyed {re;ude before Opera for years. The changes have convinced me not to go back. The menu used to have a small plates (appetizers) option, but now has a "salad bar" type thing that is not at all worth the $15 or $20 charged. ($15 if ordered with an entree, $20 if alone) There were only 2 soft cheeses, lots of crackers and hard bread, some meats, one green salad - all arugula with some cheese and cashews mixed in. Some sort of thing that might hav been quinoa. Nothing was labeled, and the young man standing near by had no idea what most things were. The chicken entree was bland, the iced tea was bottled and tasted awful, service was very slow, and at the end we could not get our check in a timely manor because of a printer break down. Have they never written out a check? We arrived at 5 PM with a reservation, and did not get out of there until 6:35, making us late for the lecture. Never again, after so many years.

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food1
ambience1
service1
value1

 
·Dined on August 6, 2017

Waitstaff should be able to answer questions about food prep, ingredients, gluten-free options & wine/beer pairings aside from what is given on the menu for such a curated menu and price point for entrées. Our server needed to run to the kitchen frequently for answers to basic questions. Also need to work on timing of meal service & clearing plates. Perhaps this was a one-off situation due to the first night with a new format.

Otherwise, servers were nice & Friendly. We very much enjoyed the food & wine. The wine selection was good.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Afternoon Coffee, Seasonal, Creative Cuisine, Pre/post Theatre
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food4
ambience4
service1
value3

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on June 11, 2017

Matthew was one of the best servers I've ever had (anywhere)!

Tags: Good for Groups, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

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