19 August 2010
Steak off.......Striphouse New York Vs Boa Los Angeles
On all US trip I have ever made, there a 2 certain elements, the first being the longest soul destroying ritual that is US customs, the second being the steak house experience that I have yet to experience in this country. And for the record, I just cannot bring myself to cash in my life savings and go to either Goodmans or Hawksmoor when I personally enjoying cooking a steak so much.
This year I was fortunate enough to be in LA a month prior to my New York visit giving me the opportunity to compare East Vs West.....
BOA - Santa Monica
It was Sunday night and I was pretty impressed by the funky modern decor which is undoubtedly a ploy to snare the fashionable young things just like their rival STK. That said the lighting was ridiculously dark. The service bright, attractive and so much more up beat from the usual steak house. With good company and a Californian wine list of biblical proprotions we were all set.
Starter: Caesar Salad made table side .... Now this is something I have not seen since my days working at the Brisbane Hilton in the early 90s, which whilst pretty damn good, it is still only a caesar.
Main: Kansas Ctiy Steak which is very similar to a strip steak with the bone. In some respect a little dry but well seasoned and cooked as requested.
The sides of macarone cheese, creamed spinach, mash with cheese and bacon and broccoli were all on the bland side. Perhaps the lack of seasoning is a California thing because we encountered this at serveral restaurants.
Deserts are always a difficult thing in US steakhouses and I am yet to have one due to volume of starters and main. Anyway, I would gladly return to this very restaurant, it was fun especially on the Saunday night where the wines are half price. I would however have the rib next time I go back and watch the pacific roll in.
Look and Feel 1.5
All in 7.5 out of 10
After a friends recommendation and some considerable hype I was looking forward to this. A lot ! The sultry red and more red decor made this a seriously veluptious place. At the par our bar man went to work and mixed up a couple of stunning cocktails with some good chat. As American's are partial to cloning, I would like to clone him and bring him back here for his craft.
Once seated in the restaurant, the 100 mile an hour New York service set in. Our waiter reeled off the 5 specials in just as many seconds and looked at me if was from Mars when I asked him to repeat it. Why is it, that NYC steak houses seem to have this attitude as I got the same Wolfgang's some years earlier ? From here on in he got the hint that I was expecting him to "wait" on us and not be a delivery boy.
We shared a tomato and buffalo mozzerella salad which was blindingly good. Why you ask.. 3 types of tomato, some of the best mozzeralla dressed with a basil oil can only be a good thing.
The main was a bone in rib (aged at least 28 days as the menu had various vinatges on their meat) with bernaise, and onion rings, fries and creamed spinach on the side. While it is certainly a diet free zone, I found it extremely hard to fault any of the dishes or sauce served. The steak was simply perfectly rested, seasoned and cooked; just stunning as pictured above. The fries were pretty good but played 2nd fiddle to the creamed spinach. The onion rings were disappointingly shreaded but that is small beer given the quality of the rest of the meal
The wine service was slow especially as I was having it by the glass, but I blame this on my waiter. The wine choices were OK and the house wines were well worth trying.
Once agiant the challenge of desert was too much.
But on the strength on steak alone... New York wins but this practice will be an essential practice in all my North American trips.......... one day i will get to what I believe to be steak heaven: Argentina.
Look and Feel 2.0
All in 8.5 out of 10