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How is Mr. Chow at the W South Beach Doing So Far?

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  Site Where: 2201 Collins Ave [map], Miami Beach, fl, United States, 33139
August 26, 2009 at 10:18 AM | by | ()

We’re heading to South Beach this weekend, with plans to sample the menu at the W South Beach’s Mr. Chow, which opened a couple of weeks ago. To prepare ourselves, we surfed the interwebs for some of the restaurant’s first reviews.

Here’s what we found:

So far, there are 4 reviews on Yelp. One declared Mr. Chow “a first class dining experience,” noting that the mushroom side dish contained “the largest mushrooms I’ve seen in SOBE.” The next reviewer called the meal “fine” and “respectable, but I wasn’t wowed.” The most recent review, however, raved: “Outstanding! Outstanding! Outstanding!!!” Overall, the Yelpers lead us to believe we should order the crispy beef (three out of four loved it), and maybe the green prawns and ginger lobster.

Over at Miami.com, the fancy décor and well-orchestrated staff get a nod. Their reviewer says, “Dinner here takes on the clattering chaos of a classic Chinese feast.” She recommends the three-course Beijing Duck dinner, or if ordering a la carte, water dumplings and the string beans in XO sauce.

The dudes at UrbanDaddy seem most in love with the moguls-and-models scene but when it comes to the menu they name-drop the Gambler's Duck, Emperor's Crab and Beef Tongue.

Finally, one of the foodies over at Chowhound likens Mr. Chow to Hakkasan (at the Fontainebleau) and Phillipe Chow (at the Gansevoort South): “fancy Chinese food with outrageous prices.” Let down by the lack of spiciness, the Chowhounder dropped $292 for two people but left hungry.

Have you eaten at Mr. Chow? Share your reviews below, and stay tuned for HotelChatter’s verdict next week.

Archived Comments:

i have to go with that last review

"fancy Chinese food with outrageous prices." granted, i haven't eaten at Mr. Chow Miami but this is South Beach and these are hotel restaurants. The prices are insane.

No Menu

I noticed you mention in the article certain items you plan to order at Mr. Chow SOBE. One of things about Mr. Chow restaurants, which some people hate and some people consider luxurious and convenient, is that the waiters typically encourage people to let them order for the table. You can state preferences but then they like to "take care of you". You may want to just give them some guidance and then see what comes out. Of course you can also look at and order from the menu.

This place is HORRIBLE

If you read any part of my review, I hope at least it's the beginning as I will say this was the worst dining experience I've ever had.  To start with, even though my party had 9:30 PM reservations, they wouldn't sit us down inside for another 2 hours.  But they offered us outside immediately, even though it was very cold.  But they promised the heaters were on.  So we took the outside option but found out the heaters weren't working very well.  One server took our order (eventually) and then came back 10 minutes later to tell us half of our order was no longer available - those items were done for the night (at 10PM - on Black Friday).  So he recommended other items which we then chose.  The service so far was horrible so we spoke with the manager who brushed us off at first and gave some lame excuse that he would speak to the chef.  I guess the chef was going to be sent to the supermarket at that time to shop?

    So moving along, he told us if getting a table inside would make the evening better - and of course we agreed.  So all of a sudden a table emerges inside but in an area that felt like a banquet hall instead of the restaurant that Mr Chow is supposed to stand for.  Then we get another server who starts the whole bid again and tries to take out order - total chaos - nobody knows anything.  Then the manager comes by and offers us other items - cuz it seems that the items the prior server offered to replace the ones which weren't available are not available either.  DOES THIS PLACE HAVE ANY FOOD?  And the thing is he started bringing things that he offered without telling us that the original food wasn't available.  Eventually the food came out.  I ordered the sea bass and so did a friend of mine.  They put the whole thing on one plate and failed to tell us both servings were there.  The rest of the food tasted like utter crap.  The beef was gummy and the breaded chicken was...bread.  The duck was SUPER dry and the sea bass was cold.  At no time did any server come by to offer more water and they definitely didn't ask if everything was ok because they knew what the answer would be.  Then came the bill - with an 18% gratuity automatically added (which the menu said with a party of 6 and we were 5).  I'm sure you know we did not pay for the tip - which in 36 years that I have been alive I have NEVER left ZERO as a tip anywhere.  When we brought up the food problems, the manager said he would speak to the chef - WHAT IS THAT GOING TO RESOLVE???  Total ignorance and I will never go back to this place again in ANY city...and will bad mouth it forever.  If I could call it overpriced Chinese food, that would be ok...but it was just overpriced crap...not even worth the hype.

Mr Chow - You need to visit your restaurant !

Having dined at Mr Chow's elsewhere we thought we'd try the SOBE one when friends from LA were in town. What a major mistake. Our 8pm table wasn't ready until almost 9pm, the reception desk (run by young girls clearly out of their depth and on the verge of tears) looked like people trying to get the last flight out of Saigon, and the "background" music was so in your face it was hard to hear conversation. While we waited, alternating standing near the desk and in the bar of the W, we heard so many complaining voices we rerally should have gone elsewhere. Tables were so crammed in no-one could move, food that is decidely lacklustre and way over-priced and staff so harrassed. Our conclusion is that this chain has gone the way of so many celebrity chefs (we had a similar Gordon Ramsey experience in London recently)and is more interested in style (although that's a matter of opinion) and celebrity ratings than substance and food. We'll never eat there again under any circumstances.

The twist in the tail is that our LA friends had such a positive experience in another restaurant the next night they're now in talks with the owner to invest in setting up one of his restaurants in LA.