My husband and I dine here before going to the Opera. The food last year and this year has consistently declined. The selections are fewer but most importantly, the quality of the food is mediocre at best. This is disappointing because it’s a convenient place and the turn around is good. The prices, however, continue to be high and the quality low.
The salmon was dry as was the white rice. I think white rice is boring anyway but especially without any sauce or spices.
We have been patrons here for many years as opera patrons. The place has changed this year. The cheese plate has morphed into a "Harvest Table", with a higher price, but more options, most of which did not appeal to me. The entre of beef was tasteless, the kale salad, simply a small plate full of kale, also a tasteless dressing, without anything to break up the kale like nuts or cheese. The desserts we choose, an apple tartine and a sorbet, were sour, and had no texture. The seat I was offered, a small bench like thing right behind the harvest table, kept tiping forward. It was not held in place on the floor. The convenience of the p[lace for opera is a draw, but the food deterioration may cause us to look elsewhere.
Convenient for opera-goers. Limited menu with few gluten-free options. The greens with my entree consisted of three wilted leaves. But our waiter was excellent.
Delicious food. Attentive staff. Nice to get there, park, have a nice glass of wine and good dinner, enjoy the Opera. No hassle. Great way to end the work week.
This is a convenient choice if you are attending the opera or ballet at McGaw Hall. It lets you find event parking easily and they are geared to quick pre performance service. To accomodate this, the menu is limited, but always includes a vegetarian option, and varies from event to event. If you choose, it is possible to postpone dessert until intermission.
Our fish entrée, which we were looking forward to, was overcooked, tasteless, and dry. We were greatly disappointed because we like fish. The dessert was good. Most of the entrees are likewise disappointing.
There should be at least one standard entrée that my teenage granddaughters can eat, like a hamburger.
If it has been a while since you last visited you should give it another go as the menu has been upgraded and is now much more interesting. The food is great and so is the service. I don't know if they are open on non-opera nights as that is the only times we have been there. If they are open they should advertise that fact as it is worth a shot.
I ate at Prelude before the opera. The food was delicious. I ordered the beef roast, mashed potatoes and carrots. I asked if I could substitute the carrots and she gave me turnip greens instead. The servings were so huge that I could not finish my meal, but the food was great! Because it was a special occasion, I did not feel that the price was too out of range
This was our first visit to Prelude. We dined here before the Anderson Cooper presentation. The food was very good, my only issue was that the plates should have been warmed, my chicken was not as hot as it should have been . Our waitress, Senait, was excellent! She was efficient without rushing us. We will be back.
The wild salmon was so dry I sent it back. They were gracious and asked what I'd like to replace it and the chicken was good.
We ate dinner before the opera and were served very good food in a timely manner and in a pleasant setting.
Dinner before the opera, as always. Prelude was actually better for dinner than usual. The food was hot and both dishes arrived at the same time! Chicken breast was small-ish but the brisket was big-ish. Overall management was better than usual.
Ordered ahead for dessert and coffee at intermission. The desserts were there and were good but no coffee. We flagged a waiter down....
Remember that you go to Prelude primarily for the convenience, it is no Loulay. We will go back because of that convenience.
The noise level was so loud we couldn’t hear the opera music that was being played to accompany the meal. The waiter commented on it.
I was a bit hesitant to make reservations here, after reading some of the other reviews. I think the selections were good - we had the roast chicken with polenta...the citrus vinaigrette green "topping" was nice...although there could have been a few more greens. There were some comments about small portions and they were on the small side but certainly enough. Heartier appetites could have an appetizer or the chef's table option really did look tasty. Our waiters was extremely friendly and helpful and very enjoyable. The wine options were good. A very dear friend from out of town was here to go to a concert and she has a bit of a hard time getting around, so Prelude seemed like a good option so we didn't have to walk very far. I am so glad that we went and enjoyed our meal!
This is a convenient place to eat before an opera or other performance at McCaw Hall. I would not go out of my way to eat here, otherwise. The menu is usually ambitious and sometimes coordinated with the performance. Execution is OK. The wine selection is ok. Service has sometimes been uninformed.
Look forward to the restaurant taking a look at these reviews with a commitment to using the comments to make significant changes. Menu is limited, food is not alway hot, service can be slow when it's busy, portion sizes are small - when measured against price.
The staff makes a sincere effort to accomodate guests. They are often hampered by back-ups in the kitchen and thus slow meal prep. and delivery.
Prelude has somewhat of a "captured" clientele - those of us who attend the ballet or the opera. It should not be lost on them that we are there out of convenience. That said, not certain how much longer we will continue.
Reliably good food and exceptionally convenient for dinner before Opera.
I have eaten there several times pre-event! Food and service is incredible....
My meal was the Citrus Chicken and I got to taste my friend's brisket... both were fabulously most and tasty - desserts were wonderful too... I had the sorbet and my companion the chocolate torte!
Hopefully I will visit again soon!!!!!
ps: restaurant was busy and the service was wonderful.... great start to a wonderful evening!
We came here on a Wednesday night before the opera. Great atmosphere as it was packed with opera goers. Service was efficient. We both had a very tasty brisket, wine was good, so was the dessert we shared.
We could hear the singers warming-up their voices in the background.
Convenient, pleasant and tasty.
A nice place to have some appetizers and a drink before the Opera. The carpaccio plate and artichoke dip was delicious, the wine selection has something for everyone and the customer service was fantastic.
We dine at prelude before every opera. This experience was like most every evening - Convenient, pleasant, enjoyable. We appreciated our waitperson and hope to see her again.
Limited vegetarian menu, I don't feel the salad bar is an option. I do very much enjoy the new Chef and menu, I just wish there were more choices for vegetarians before the kitchen runs out of food.
We regularly eat here prior to a show. Usually the food prices are on the high side, but acceptable. In Feb 2018 my friend ordered latkes and the service came with ONR latke znd done garnishes. Price, $14. Whatttt.? That's outrageous.
My 3 shrimp tacos were tasty and relatively speaking generous; at any other restaurant that portion would have been considered normal and the $13 price normal.
Advise? Ask about portion sizes if you are expecting enough to be satisfied when the item is on the main menu.
Their menu offering have been declining over the past couple of years. Yesterday "brunch" menu was quite interesting, and the " Harvest Table" was ghardly unique, and certainly not a good value. Bring back the menus you had a few years ago!
Mediocre ; food so-so; choice very limited; staff very nice
The $11 kale salad was very small and lackluster.
The collard greens were Brown and unappealing, we were served the tail portion of the salmon, not what I'd expect for $27. Very disappointed with the entire meal. Our server was sympathetic and comped our wine.
Food was great but they could offer a little more variety
The food was bad. Salmon was overcooked and rice with no sauce was tasteless. The brisket was overcooked and burnt in some places. The meat was stripped along the grain and the presentation was awful and the was tough and inedible. Probably one of the worst meals I have ever had. The chef should be fired!
Dined at Prelude before the opera. Very convenient. The chicken was very good, the salmon just slightly too well done, the cocktails excellent, and the olive oil cake dessert a fine finish. I’ll be back.
My daughter and I dined at Prelude before a Swan Lake performance. Frankly, I wasn’t expecting much, and chose the restaurant for it’s easy access to McCaw Hall. I was very pleasantly surprised at the quality of the food and the extensive wine list. My daughter ordered the braised elk w/mushrooms, and I had the braised beef short rib. Both were excellent. The suggested wine pairings were spot on. Our server Charles was funny and engaging,and very knowledgeable about the menu & preparations. I would absolutely recommend this restaurant before any McCaw Hall performance. It’s so nice to come early, have no parking hassles or delays, and have a very good, relaxing meal before a performance.
I have been going to Prelude for many years before the ballet. The menu change has not been good. I had a mediocre meal in September and yesterday ordered a grilled cheese sandwich that had no resemblance to a grilled cheese. It was so dry the bread did not stick together and was terrible! I sent it back and had what was left of the buffet. The server saved the day in bringing me lox since there was none left on the buffet table. I am not coming back, sadly, unless someone tells me the menu has improved.
We have eaten twice at Prelude at McCaw Hall before a ballet. We have had their seasonal “buffet” twice, which is both interesting and delicious. For dessert we had the sesame gelato and the blackberry meringue, both of which were generous and delicious! The wait staff was been excellent every time.
The food was good. The staff was friendly. Super convenient for dinner before the Ballet.
Menu too limited and the buffet was terrible! Few choices, not interesting, not tasty, no substantial elements, way overpriced.
Only positive is that it’s convenient to a performance.
Always pleased with the staff. Any delay in service can be attributed to kitchen staffing. That delay often means the hot items are not "hot" upon delivery. Example, Saturday night's consomme' was barely worm. (It also totally missed the mark on taste).
As for the food: choices are limited and unfortunately too much effort goes into making the menu exotic looking rather than concentrating on taste and portion size. There is a disconnect between those portion sizes and value. Might want to consider adding a vegetable side to many entrees.
We continue to frequent Prelude because of the ease of moving from dinner to the ballet or the opera. Otherwise, this would not be our first choice for evening dining.
The food is not great but the friendly service and convenience to performances at the Opera House make it well worth it!
This is a like cafe at the end of a hall with ok service and food but Super expensive!!!
We dined at Prelude because it is so convenient for the ballet. Unfortunately, my food was awful. The consomme was poured over cold raw cauliflower and dried mushrooms. I wanted hot broth and instead had cool broth because of the cold bowl and cold cauliflower. The mushrooms were fine but the cauliflower was dissonant. The consomme had a strong vinegar flavor. My next dish was recommended by my server; do not listen to the server. It was squid ink pasta stuffed with ricotta. The pasta was overcooked, limp and soggy. The ricotta filling was tolerable. What made the dish intolerable was the pasta ricotta pockets were floating in at least a quarter cup of melted butter. It was like a bowl of melted butter, awful. I had dessert at intermission which is nice. The dessert, billed as a chocolate cherry cake, had no cherry flavor at all in it. It was a tolerable petit four style chocolate mouse layered very small square piece of cake. The bread served at the table with dinner was very good and the wine was good. Otherwise meal a bust. Also, the server disappeared and we had to go find someone to pay our bill to. I really want to like Prelude but this meal makes it very very hard.
Service could be better in terms of promptness and attention to detail. We got assigned a small table in a busy area when there were clearly quieter tables. We had to be asked to be moved.
We then sat there for quite some time before our server came. Servers in this restaurant has an extra challenge. They need to know that everyone there is on a time crunch due ballet or opera start times or limited intermission times. Food ordered for intermission needs to be ready and waiting. Servers assigned to a given tables need to be dedicated to those tables.