Prime Steak and Seafood Closed Jan. 15th

Update 3/10/10
This location is now called McNary Restaurant & Lounge.

1/19/10
I received the following in an email from Jeff Schlabowske, Executive Chef/Owner on Jan. 17th.  Maybe I'm a cockeyed optimist, but I think Prime would've done well downtown.

"We have decided not to renew our lease with McNary and have signed a new lease to reopen as Prime on Park in Portland on the corner of Salmon and SW Park. We will keep most of our old menu but "Portlandize" it to include new items. Our grand opening is slated for April 2nd.

Anyway, we've enjoyed our ride in Keizer and now feel it's time to stretch our wings and fly on up to PDX."

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am sad to see prime go. The food was outstanding and the service was always great as well as the atmosphere. I am happy to hear they will re-open up in Portland area!

Anonymous said...

IMO Prime never seemed to fit McNary. whenever I'm at McNary I expect to see a band on the stage and people dancing on the dance floor. did that ever happen?

jeff said...

McNary Golf Course seems to have problems hanging onto a decent restaurant.

Pemba said...

It's hard for a good restaurant to survive and thrive in an extremity of Salem, whether that be Keizer, West Salem or South Salem. I live about 3 blocks away from it and have never been there, it's sad. However, my wife and I drive past it frequently to go downtown to Venti's or one of the Willamette's. PRIME, to me, gave off the impression to be either an upscale anniversary/birthday place or a country club type of atmosphere. Granted, i've never been there, but that's what kept me away.

Also, if they are going to "Portlandize", did they fail because they "Salemized/Keizerized" it? It would have been nice to see them try to "Portlandize" (whatever that really means) it here. How nice would it have been to get some good Portland type food here in Salem without actually having to drive up there?

Anonymous said...

Pemba, that was the exact reaction I had as soon as I read that sentence. Why didn't they "Portlandize" here? Maybe it would be helped them be more successful. It makes me feel kind of lame, like people only want to pull out all the stops for Portland, but not Salem. Isnt that usually our problem? Can't we think of ourselves as cool, too?

Jeff Schlabowske said...

When I said "Portlandize", I in no way meant to offend the good people of Keizer and Salem. I tried several things to bring foodies into Prime. Monthly Fresh Sheets, wine pairings, smoked meats and fish, wild boar! But they didn't sell and as a chef, that hurt. It turns out people at McNary wanted fish & chips, razor clams and 6 oz top sirloins. I did my best to "portlandize" my menu at McNary but Pemba: you would't have known that because as you said you lived 3 blocks from my restaurant but never bothered to come in. Salem is cool and there are many fine options to dine at but we found the perfect spot on the corner of SW Park and Salmon. We know Prime will work there. Good luck to all of you in Keizer and Salem. It was a pleasure serving you.

SalemStinks! said...

I could not agree more with you, Jeff! I wish you well up there. There is a handful of “Portland” worthy restaurants in Salem, and that is about all it can handle. My wife and I go to Portland and stay at the Paramount Hotel right around the corner. We will be sure to stop by and check out your new place. Will you have a bar area also? Although there are some foodies here on this site that live in Salem, I think we all know what Jeff means. Salem’s bread and butter consist mostly of chain establishments and fast food. That is what flourishes here. And no, we cannot be think of ourselves as cool down here!

Anonymous said...

SalemStinks, I'm so glad there are a growing number of Salemites who are working hard and successfully making changes in this city. It's a wonderful thing to witness, after years and years of just hearing people gripe about the state of the city. The last time I checked, chain restaurants were flourishing all over the nation (even Portland!), not just Salem.

Jillian said...

I've heard rumors about Prime Seafood. Is there a former employee who would be willing to go on record with me? My email is jdaley@statesmanjournal.com and my phone is 503-399-6714.
I'm Jillian, the Statesman's Keizer reporter.
Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Check out this article in the Statesman Journal today to learn more about Prime Steak and Seafood.

http://www.statesmanjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=20102020327