Phone: 604-331-1511 [Online reservations available via OpenTable]
My girlfriend and I have entered Yaletown for dinner one Sunday evening in December before a show. We decided to visit Hamilton Street Grill because I’ve heard their food is quite good and because we had an Entertainment coupon that gave us 2 for 1. It was an early dinner, we made a reservations before hand (just in case it was busy). When we entered the restaurant…
We were surprised that there was only 2 other tables that were occupied. I guess no one really eats dinner at 5:30pm. It was rather quiet for a Street Grill, but I liked it, not having to scream across the table to converse. We were seated right away, but of all the tables that were available, we were seated at a corner at this small squared table with no leg-room (even my hand and arm was longer than the table).
We browsed through the menu, not knowing what to get, because we weren’t all that hungry at 5:30pm. It seemed like lunch was just a few hours ago. So, we decided not to get something too heavy because I prone to fall asleep after a heavy meal. (Not too great if I’m snoozing before a show.) In the end, we decided to get two entrees.
The bread and the butter was free, of course. The special thing about this was the butter. It was very creamy and it had small dots inside the butter cream. I remember that my girlfriend asked the server what it was inside, but I cannot recall what the server said. It was just special, that’s all.
The halibut was an off-the-menu item. We overheard the server talking about specials for that evening to the table behind us, but for some reason he didn’t mention anything about it to us. So, we asked him up-front. The halibut was really fresh, but small. And what we didn’t expect was that sitting underneath the halibut was a bed of beans. My girlfriend was not very happy about that, as she’s not a friend of any beans. For ~$25+, I don’t think this was worth the value. Luckily, she wasn’t that hungry.
This was a on-menu item. It’s a house-made pasta with slow-braised short ribs topped with veal reduction, creme fraiche, and toasted pine nuts. The pasta was “one-of-a kind”, it was kind of chewy, but I liked it. Definitely made in-house. The short ribs were juicy and tender. It wasn’t a bad dish for $20, especially when it’s filling. One thing that I didn’t like too much was the use of pine nuts in the pasta. Never had that before, it was just a little awkward.
Overall, we had a peaceful dinner. It was very quiet from beginning to end. The food was alright. I was expecting a little more (in terms of size), I guess they expect you to eat a 3-course meal. But, if you are just having an entree, prepare for a late-night snack or a heavy lunch. The service was pretty good. They would have received a higher rating if they had not forgotten to tell us the special that evening. But, the service at the end made up for it. The server came by a few times to ask how we were doing and exchanged the hot waters for us during our meal. The value is where I have to give it a thumbs down. For the amount of food you get and the price you are paying, it’s not very proportionate. I understand it’s in the heart of Yaletown but, the value is just not at par. The ambiance is quite romantic with low-lighting and and brick walls. It’s got a sense of class to it, maybe that’s because the other two tables were old couples sipping their wine.