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Creed's Seafood & Steaks
499 North GulphRoad
King of Prussia, Pennsylvania
(610) 265-2550
www.creedskop.com

My wife and I have dined at Creed’s on numerous occasions over the years and – forgive my calling upon a much overused phrase – “we have yet to be disappointed.” I first reviewed the restaurant nearly seven years ago; and the food and service have remained models of consistency.

The convivial bar/lounge will undoubtedly be your first port-of-call; and, even on normally quiet weekday evenings, trust me, the “joint is jumpin’.” Designer martinis are very much in evidence here… ditto a smattering of foreign & domestic brews and some very nice wine selections by the glass.

To start things off, if you are so inclined, Creed’s boasts an excellent raw bar replete with a pristinely fresh variety of bivalves served up with a zippy red pepper-lemon mignonette. On the other hand, if you prefer your shellfish warmed up a bit, you can’t go wrong with the dirty blonde ale steamed mussels. Plump and succulent, they swim to table in a flavorful broth embellished with house-smoked andouille sausage, caramelized sweet onions, fresh tomatoes, and tri-colored peppers.

The tomato carpaccio is another appetizer that presses all the right buttons. Wafer-thin slices of ripe seasonal tomatoes are splashed with a marvelous basil-infused olive oil and touch of aged balsamic vinegar. Crowning touches include sprinkling of fried capers and Pecorino Tuscano cheese. Superlative in every respect.

Greenery also holds a preeminent place among the starters… and all are up to the mark. The classic wedge has become something of a culinary cliché of late; but here it is prepared with just the proper flair and finesse. The freshly cut iceberg wedge is adorned with crumbles of apple wood smoked bacon, diced Roma tomatoes, hard-cooked egg, and generous apportionment of earthy bleu cheese dressing.

The traditional Caesar – boasting impeccably fresh sheaves of romaine lettuce, Locatelli cheese, and subtle hint of anchovy in the dressing – is also a sure winner… as is the salad of baby arugula. This latter presentation offers up perfectly trimmed greenery augmented by diced roasted beets, grapefruit sections, dabs of creamy goat cheese, and a lightly assertive vinaigrette.

Entrées present a plethoric variety of possibilities; and, as the restaurant’s designation suggests, they are evenly divided between piscatorial and carnivorous pursuits, which, in turn, may be matched up with a number of first-rate sauces. In addition, there are also several select chef’s specialties that change with the seasons. No matter what your particular predilection on a given evening, however, rest assured that you will not be disappointed.

When it comes to seafood items, there are several marriages that appear to be made in heaven. The medium rare yellowfin tuna, for example, finds a perfect partner in an exotic ponzu sauce (a Japanese concoction made with rice vinegar, soy sauce, mirin and/or sake, seaweed, and dry bonito flakes), while the New Zealand wild king salmon reaps the benefits of a zippy chimichurri (a thick Argentinean herb sauce consisting of olive oil, vinegar, parsley, oregano, onion, garlic, and cayenne & black pepper).

Among the chef’s specialties, the recently sampled “fruits de mer” (fruits of the sea) New England style was an outstanding effort. Served up in a lobster pot, the presentation consisted of chunks of superbly fresh fish (tuna, salmon, tilapia) and shellfish (clams, mussels, shrimp), as well as red bliss potatoes, corn, and an incredible lobster nage (aromatic broth). Equally up to the mark was a perfectly grilled tilefish set on a pillow of wild fish house rice and julienne of zucchini. The pièce de résistance, however, was an orange-fennel beurre blanc, which artfully transformed the presentation into an incomparable gastronomic gestalt.

Meaty matters are served up with equal aplomb. Red meat fans may revel in the petite filet mignon, center-cut filet, New York strip, or rib-eye steak; and then match up their choice with a brandy peppercorn sauce, Chianti demi-glace, sauce béarnaise, or Roquefort demi-glace. The recently sampled NY strip, for example, was prepared to a perfect medium rare and presented on a bed of crunchy haricots verts and sumptuous sour cream Yukon gold mashed potatoes. A carnivore’s dream-come-true. Also on the menu are a benchmark mustard- herb-crusted rack of lamb, twin filet mignon skewers, and ½ roasted organic chicken.

Desserts, all made on the premises, continue the kitchen’s fine work. The tres leches cake is companioned by whipped cream and sangria-macerated strawberries and is absolutely irresistible… ditto the Austrian rum-chocolate Bundt cake with red currant crème fraîche.

However, when it is available, nothing quite beats the exceptional peanut butter cheesecake. Peanut butter desserts often taste vaguely artificial… but the representative proffered here is addictively rich & creamy and simply bursting with genuine peanut butter flavor.

There is no question that dining at this fine establishment can be (and usually is) an expensive proposition. Be that as it may, if you are a passionate steak and/or seafood lover, Creed’s should be at the very top of your dining agenda… as this is one restaurant that most assuredly gives you your money’s worth – and infinitely more.

January 2011
The Artful Diner

The Artful Diner is an independent, freelance food writer.  His latest review and an archive of past reviews for restaurants around the country and the world can be found on this site on the REVIEWS page.

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