In our quest to provide you with only the finest foodie experience possible, we are back to review another restaurant for you to visit! This time, we put Restoration Hardware under the microscope and scrutinized every restaurant detail.
Restoration hardware has numerous locations across the country, ranging from New York, Dallas, and even Toronto, Canada. This time around, we reviewed their location in Edina, Minnesota. You may have heard of this location before, and to clear out the elephant in the room, their location is centered as a very high-end furniture store and home design center. It is a rooftop restaurant in a large steel and glass structure.
Here is what they have to say about themselves:
"THE RH ROOFTOP RESTAURANT RESIDES ON THE THIRD FLOOR OF RH MINNEAPOLIS, A NEARLY 60,000-SQUARE-FOOT DESIGN GALLERY THAT BLURS THE LINES BETWEEN RESIDENTIAL AND RETAIL, INDOORS AND OUTDOORS, HOME AND HOSPITALITY. WE INVITE YOU TO ENJOY OUR MENU OF TIMELESS CLASSICS FOR BRUNCH AND DINNER, AND A SELECTION OF WINES FROM ESTEEMED VINTNERS IN THE UNITED STATES AND EUROPE." -RH
"THE RH ROOFTOP RESTAURANT FEATURES AN INGREDIENT-DRIVEN MENU ACCOMPANIED BY A CURATED SELECTION OF ARTISANAL WINES AND CRAFT BEERS. GUESTS DINE BENEATH A GLASS-AND-STEEL ATRIUM AMIDST TRICKLING FOUNTAINS, TRELLISED LONDON PLANE TREES AND GLIMMERING CHANDELIERS." -RH
We've visited twice for our review, so let's jump right and get things started… but first, how many stars would I give them? 3 out of 5.
Upon entering the restaurant, that atmosphere was seemingly very upscale, and it was awe-inspiring to see the giant chandeliers and fountain as you walked up the large staircases. You'd then be stuck with trees lining the tables; it was an impressive sight.
As the night went on and the sky got darker, the lights would turn on and create a cozy golden ambiance. This is all helped by the glass "greenhouse" you ate in. The tables were casual, couches lined many of them and were meant for smaller parties. Unfortunately, a few disappointing elements were a huge drawback of the ambiance. The trees, yea, those were fake- and full of dust, may I just say. Eating under a tree that's plastic and dusty was rather disappointing. Then came the glass- dirty. Now I know it's exposed to the elements, but if you're going to have a glass ceiling... make it clean.
Now, if you look at their menu, it's not cheap. And with such a menu, I often expect those who attend the restaurant to dress up or perhaps have a dress code in place. Many clients wore teeshirts or casual clothes; It seemed the restaurant was more of a spectacle than known for its upscale food, environment, or service.
Once we were seated by the host, the service was exceptional during both visits. Both waiters were attentive, kind, and personable. It's not uncommon in the service industry to get a server that's attentive and kind but not necessarily personable to the point where they try to make a connection with you. If I were to rank the restaurant just on service, I'd give them a 4/5. Why not 5/5? I'm picky; I need a server that goes the extra mile far above the mark than just what they've been trained to do and say.
Across our visits, we tried the Délice de Bourgogne cheese board, Lobster Roll, Shaved Ribeye on Charred Garlic Bread, and Roasted half chicken, Yukon Gold Potato Puree, and Simple Green Salad.
Our appetizer, the Délice de Bourgogne cheese board, was exceptionally delicious. The bread was warm and flavorful, cheese was soft and flavorful, and the strawberry preserves.... oh, I could eat that by the spoonful. It worked perfectly with the cheese and "baguette." Was the bread in the shape of a baguette... it was a little bit of a stretch, but ok, we will go with it.
The food was ok, Not exceptional for what one expects for the price. The lobster roll was decent, the lobster wasn't fresh, but the bread and sauce were good. Lobster pulled from the ocean a few hours before eating it, and lobster that's been frozen or stuck in a tank has a very different taste. The Shaved Ribeye was disappointing; it wasn't anything special. I can walk over to my local bakery and get a sandwich that's better for a quarter of the price. The roasted half chicken was good- juicy and flavorful, just not exceptional. It was what you'd expect from a chicken- it was just that, a chicken with some seasoning and cooked well. It was plated nicely, but not worth the price.
Then there were the sides… I've been seeing this a little more often in restaurants; you order your main dish and now have to pay a separate price, that usually isn't cheap, for a side. This practice honestly infuriates me. Not only does it make me mad to pay a fee that's exaggerated compared to the food cost, but the average patron should not have to pair their food with a side. That is half the chef's job- pairing the main elements in the dish to sides and flavors that go well together. In the case of this restaurant, I felt the sides didn't fit with many of the main courses. The Potato puree was a basic mash potato, and the salad was underwhelming.
I'd love to go into critiquing the flavors; believe me, as a chef, I'd love nothing more. But the food didn't have much for me to critique. I want to critique the sauces and the spices, but when the food is disappointing and unexciting, I simply can not provide you with such a critique.
My honest opinion and rating of RH, would I go back? It's hard to say. The food was disappointing for the most part, but the service was excellent. I was in awe of the massive chandeliers and grand entrance; the idea of eating under the moon was exciting. But the view in Edina was not exceptional, the trees were dusty, and I didn't get a high class feels that one should call for the price paid.
I'm sure many of you have had wonderful experiences here, but I'm disappointed with my time spent here. The restaurant has potential but needs to iron out some of the wrinkles in the system.
So would I return? For the price, probably not. I can think of plenty of other high-class restaurants I'd like to try, and numerous ill give 4-5 stars to. What's the key factor here? The food. Do a little cleaning; that's easy. But the food must be exceptional for the price I paid- and it just dropped the mark.
Overall, I'd give RH Three out of Five stars. It wasn't exceptionaly enjoyable and had numerous elements to sort out before they work up my list of stringent standards. It seemed an impressive idea, and the environment was more important than the food and experience. I'm strict for a reason; I want you, our readers, to be able to pick the best restaurants out there. That is what we are here to do, help you in your culinary and eating journey.
"The Flying Chef"