A downtown Cincinnati steakhouse is rebranding and overhauling its menu as it comes under new ownership.
Prime 47 at 580 Walnut St. downtown will be known as Prime Cincinnati starting Oct. 1. The move comes as the restaurant was purchased by managing partner Nelson Castillo and Tony Birkla and Bernie Bolt of Anderson Birkla Investment Partners, the Indianapolis-based real estate company that developed the AT580 building that houses the steakhouse.
"We want to define a Cincinnati restaurant, a business-district restaurant," Castillo told me. "We're rebranding and taking the lunch menu to a whole new level and adding a whole new seafood menu."
The rebranding is shifting the focus away from purely steak – though that will still be a prominent component of the menu – to a heavier emphasis on seafood and an expanded wine list. Castillo said the restaurant is adding 20 to 30 new labels to its wine list by October.
The restaurant is remodeling a bit, too, as part of the rebranding. New art with a focus on Cincinnati is being brought in including paintings by Cincinnati artist Carlos Navarro and photography from Steven Thomas. Prime Cincinnati is also partnering with FC Cincinnati and local nonprofits to bring in new art.
The focus on USDA Prime meats remains, but the restaurant has changed its provider to Purely Meat Co. out of Chicago. The menu also includes items like roasted duck and ossobuco to cater to people who may not want beef.
"It's the best meat I've seen in terms of quality," executive chef Shawn Heine told me. "I'm also going to up my seafood as far as I can go."
Prime Cincinnati will be shipping its seafood fresh next-day air from Hawaii, including opah, swordfish and Japanese sushi-grade tuna.
"There's not really any place in town to get a wide variety of fresh seafood," Heine said. "I'm all about high-quality freshness and I look at the source."
The lunch menu is also being overhauled. It will change seasonally, but pastas will be featured for fall. The menu will contain about five pasta dishes, which can also be ordered half-and-half with soup or salad. New items like fish tacos and steak tacos will be added to the lunch menu, which will retain some of the more popular burger choices that currently exist. Heine is also adding jumbo tater tots with either smoked cheddar beer cheese or bacon with sour cream and chives.
The new branding and menu will take effect on Oct. 1.