Monday, December 21, 2009

Craft Steak NYC: Don't

I usually don't write negative reviews. Its not my speed: I'd rather just ignore the place. That's why my London posts were so few! But, after my meal tonight at Craft Steak, I feel that I really can't ignore this...the service and food were unacceptable for such a venture. I remember Tom Colicchio telling a contestant on "Top Chef" that people came to top flight restaurants for a special occasion, and that it wasn't fair to them to have a bad night. If the meal we had tonight was on Top Chef, it would definitely have been a "Pack Your Knives and Go" type of night for the chef who prepared it for us.

We went for a special occasion: boy #2's birthday. Our entry into Craft Steak started with an indifferent greeting in the Las Vegas like space that is this restaurant (the decor and table spacing are the best part of the place, and are quite nice in a Gordon Gekko kind of way). Led to our table, we sat a bit, and then were asked our drink orders. We had some questions about the food and whether there were any specials, and the waiter told us that he would have a complete explanation when he came back. Some time after that, he came back and said "ready to order!??" We made him do the explanations. In summary, they have a "market menu" that changes every day and therefore there are "no specials." Very nice in concept, but the menu from November 29th that is posted on the internet is almost identical to the one we had....the differences being a few dishes or types of steak that you might even want to call "special" if you so desired.

The Caesar salad was too fishy, the frisee with fried pork ear was fine. The marrow bones were good, but they were served on a giant plate of kosher salt. One slip of the fork and your marrow was toast (not on toast, as it should be). The dinner rolls were supposed to be a "better" version of the warm parker rolls that you can buy in the supermarket, but were lacking something that those rolls had. And they were dolled out as if they were gold.

We did not have the Wagyu beef, but we did have a wide selection of other cuts: the porterhouse, strip steak, flat iron and hanger steak. The porterhouse was clearly the best, with the flat iron in a somewhat distant second. All of the steaks were salted in a way that could only be described as "variable." The hanger steak was like shoe leather.

We had been there for almost two hours at the end of dinner (this is a steak house) and couldn't deal with it anymore. We paid and left without eating dessert.

Needless to say, next time we go to Luger's, and if we can't get in Palm, Too.


nygirl said...

The only side dish that met our expectations were the french fries. The assorted mushrooms were overdone, the garlic potatoes minimal and the spinach gratin dish undistinguished. Get your Collichio on TV.

The mother-in -law.

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