There’s ONE and Only One House of Prime Rib
Go to House of Prime Rib in the Bay Area!
No story, no quote, no anecdote to set the stage…
Just get yourself to HOPR!
House of Prime Rib tl;dr
- Culinary SF Institution for Prime Rib
- Get Yourself a Martini
- You Can Get Your Serving Seared
- You Can Get Your 2nd Serving as End Cut, if Available
It seems that every holiday season these days, there is usually a trip to House of Prime Rib involved, this year was no exception. Whenever I think of House of Prime Rib I think of yummy cocktails where you can get more than one drink since they give you the shaker and whether or not I’ll make it to the second slice.
When you arrive at HOPR the best thing is that you’ll be able to valet park your car as it can be a bit difficult to find street parking in the area. However, if you circle long enough and you’re not afraid to walk a bit you should be able to find a spot.
Nowadays when trying to get into HOPR, it seems that if you don’t have a reservation, it’s almost impossible to get in, so pro tip, whether its via Opentable or by just calling them, be sure you secure a reservation before trying to head over, well unless you’re trying to eat right when they open or very early in the evening.
Cuts of Prime Rib
At HOPR the main thing to eat there is obviously the prime rib. There are a variety of sizes and cuts available but with such a small price difference between the various cuts, we always go for the largest, the King Henry, medium rare of course. Warning it is a thick cut but if you prefer thinner slices, you can always get English cut. For those non prime rib lovers there are a couple of other items on the menu like seafood or chicken but I have never had it so I can’t attest to how good it is.
Prior to getting the main attraction, the prime rib, you are served a very delicious sourdough bread complete with creamy butter and a fantastic salad. I am normally not a huge fan of salad but there is something about this salad that is so delicious you will be hooked too. The salad comes with thinly sliced beets and a thousand island like sauce. Topped with some ground pepper and I can eat that salad by itself for lunch! But be careful not to fill out on salad/bread the best part is yet to come.
For your entree, the prime rib chef will come around and introduce himself before cutting you the piece of your choice. Always served with either mashed or baked potatoes (I personally love the mashed), creamed spinach and yorkshire pudding, once you get the food it is time to sit back, relax and enjoy the beautiful piece of meat in front of you.
More is More
After we finished our piece and several of our table did, you can ask for a second piece for free, which we gladly did. Pro tip, they will take away your existing plate so if you want to keep your mashed potatoes and creamed spinach, ask them to put it on a separate plate for you. Or if you didn’t know like I did, then you can ask them to give you another portion but it will just be a sliver of your original piece. Not sure if it was because we went during the holiday but this time around we seriously received the thinnest piece ever. Out of the numerous times we’ve been there, we have never seen a second slice so thin!
All in all, while the prime rib and the sides are still solid, the service and the experience overall was extremely disappointing. Perhaps it was the holiday season and they were extremely busy or it could just be that they are very comfortable with their success and service is no longer a priority but if you do go, don’t expect the service to be on top of their game. There were two servers for a whole room of people which basically made it impossible to ask for things and in fact we had to hunt down the waitress and go to her multiple times to get what we wanted/needed.
Go for the food not the experience. It also helps to eat with people that make a good time out of any situation. And let’s not forget the copious amounts of martinis that always makes things better.