Ah, the perfect steak. Is there any one way to define what makes a steak dish totally impeccable, memorable, life-changing? While we ponder that, here are eight mind-blowingly good chops that go beyond the classic hunk of meat.
American Wagyu at Killen’s Steakhouse, Houston
It's hard to choose from the roster of chops at Killen’s Steakhouse, but let's start with the insanely tender and delicious dry-aged tomahawk. The 34-oz. bone-in ribeye ($110) is seasoned simply with salt and pepper, seared to perfection to create a heavy golden-brown crust, and finished off under an infrared broiler to your desired temperature. Photo by Debora Smail.
Filet Mignon at Cut, Los Angeles
At celeb chef Wolfgang Puck’s steakhouse Cut in L.A., the must-try 8-oz. Black Angus USDA Prime Beef filet ($57) is seasoned with cracked black pepper and a proprietary steak seasoning, grilled over white oak and charcoal, broiled at 1800 degrees for the ideal crust, and brushed with garlic butter before hitting your plate. Photo courtesy of Cut.
Porterhouse at Mastro’s Steakhouse, New York City
Bustling Midtown spot Mastro’s in Manhattan gets it right with its top-notch cuts of beef, including the 48-oz. double-cut porterhouse ($80). The hunk of meat gets a rub-down in house seasoning before being cooked to the requested temperature and served sliced with the bone. It’s finished off with a squeeze of roasted lemon and extra virgin olive oil, and garnished with a bundle of Italian parsley for a fresh green finish. Photo courtesy of Mastro’s.
New York Strip at Pappas Bros. Steakhouse, Dallas
The seriously over-the-top 32-oz. bone-in Prime New York Strip ($99) at Pappas Bros. Steakhouse in Dallas is so massive, it easily feeds two. Marbled meat gets seasoned simply with salt, pepper and butter and carved tableside. Pair it with a robust red wine from the extensive list of global vintages. Photo courtesy of Pappas Bros. Steakhouse.
Ribeye at Bourbon Steak, Miami
Bourbon Steak, from James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Mina, draws a crowd of regulars and famous faces like Robert Downey Jr., James Caan and Jack Nicholson. The contemporary steakhouse specializes in organic, hormone-free seafood and meats, as in the super-flavorful 20-oz. angus bone-in ribeye ($59). First butter-poached at 125 degrees, the beef is then cooked over a custom mesquite-charcoal wood grill and brushed with a shallot and red wine butter. It’s presented with house-made bordelaise sauce and a splash of carrot jus. Photo by Turnberry Isle Miami.
Chateaubriand at Dickie Brennan's Steakhouse, New Orleans
Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse in New Orleans's French Quarter is housed in an atmospheric subterranean space, but the meats on offer are elevated, and extensive. One to try is the 20-oz. Chateaubriand ($85). Cut from the thickest part of the tenderloin, the steak is grilled and then roasted before being presented on a cast iron serving platter with an assortment of sauces. And no, you don't have to take the whole thing on yourself (unless you want to). The massive portion is shareable. Photo by Sara Essex.
Prime Rib at Highland Tap, Atlanta
Carnivorous options rule at Highland Tap in Atlanta. The speakeasy-style steakhouse offers a can’t-miss slow roasted prime rib. Dig into the extravagant, sliced-to-order prime rib, a hunk of certified Angus beef that's seasoned with house rub, and cooked low and slow until mouth-meltingly tender. Sides of horseradish dipping sauce and jus arrive on the side. And while you can get a 10-oz serving for only $20, we say go big and order the off-menu 32-oz. portion for $56. Photo courtesy of Highland Tap.
T-Bone at Alexander’s Steakhouse, San Francisco
The epic, dry-aged 15-oz. T-bone ($78) at the Japanese-inspired Alexander’s Steakhouse in San Francisco comes with grilled sudachi, chive butter and chives, not your average steakhouse sides. You also get to choose between fried rice and creamed taro leaves as accompaniments. And the meal definitely doesn't end like a classic steakhouse dinner: Cotton candy arrives gratis at the end. Photo courtesy of Alexander’s Steakhouse/Instagram.
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