After reading so many poor reviews, I was hesitant to go to Chop. However, my girlfriend had several good experiences on several different occasions, so we decided to go there for dinner with her family.
When I saw the entrance, I thought that it was odd to place it on the side of the restaurant and not the front... Not to mention the door was stuck (or it weighed a lot?), so it was difficult to open. I saw some nice patio furniture outside, so in the summer that would be a nice place to sit.
After sitting down, I checked out the surrounding decor. Everyone was saying how expensive it was to renovate the place, but I couldn't really tell. The lighting was very dim and the material didn't "look" that expensive. However, I did notice the chairs were very comfortable and the table was solid wood. The washroom was a bit disappointing too... everyone talked about the LCD TV in there. It wasn't really that big or impressive. Also, who would sit on that sofa in the washroom? Who knows what bacteria is crawling on it? I also noticed the hostesses and waiters/waitresses dressed in black shirts to look professional. However, the clientele were mainly wearing jeans, t-shirts, etc... It seems they are trying to be upscale with the restaurant, but then they do not have any dress code. Overall, I give them a good try for ambiance, but it's not really wow-ing me.
We all ordered the prime-rib, which was what received the best reviews from my girlfriend's past experience. For appetizer, we ordered the Smoked Salmon Trio and the Lobster, Scallop & Gorgonzola Dip. After about 10min, the manager came by to say that the orders were just being entered in and the food will be delayed. As an apology, they will give us the appetizers we ordered for free. We thought that was really generous as most places would not even consider doing that. Then about a minute later, another manager came by to say the same thing and the waitress came by as well to say the same thing a minute after. Hmm... we got the message the first time. I guess they were lacking communication between the staff. In about 10 min later, the manager came back and told us they only had 2 piece of prime rib left, so the other two orders would have to be changed. We were a bit surprised... it was a slow Monday night at the restaurant, how do you run out of prime rib? Anyways, two of us redecided on something else. Then 5 min later, the manager comes back and says "nevermind, we do have enough prime rib." Wow... talk about uncoordinated.
When the food finally arrived, we got the appetizers first and the prime rib came like a minute later! So we had literally no room on our table left with all the food there. Despite all this, the prime rib was EXCELLENT! It was soft like cotton and melts in your mouth. They got the sauce just right and had fresh shaved horse radish on top as well. The salmon had three pieces (thus trio I'm guessing), so wasn't a great sharing dish. Each piece had a different flavour and tasted excellent. The dip was also yummy. They had crostinis for you to spread the seafood dip on. Tasted very good (if you like seafood melt).
When we finished the food and the waitress gave us the dessert menu, the manager came by and apologized about the appetizer and entree coming at the same time. They offered us free dessert. As tempting as that was, we were too full to eat it. The medium-size prime rib was really filling. It was certainly a very generous offer for their mistake and we really appreciated it.
Overall, the food was excellent. I don't know why other reviews were ranting on the food, but we had well prepared food of high quality ingredients that Monday night. The service was a bit off due to their lack of communication, but the offers of free appetizers and desserts really helped tip the balance back to "excellent service" in my book. How often do restaurants apologize for placing orders too late or food arriving too fast and offering to pay for some of the dishes you ordered? It could have gone two ways: they made mistakes and said tough luck to paying customers or they made mistakes and offered reconciliation. I'm glad they chose the latter. For those actions, I'd be back and would recommend Chop to friends. Hopefully, they can get their act together and continue to serve superb food.