HOME > Chowhound > Chains >

Discussion

Ruths Chris or Mortons?

  • m
  • Mike Jan 21, 2004 08:32 AM

Anyone have a preference and why? I want to take my wife for Valentines Day for a nice dinner and am curious as to everyones opinion on which steakhouse is better. Thanks.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
Posting Guidelines | FAQs | Feedback
Cancel
  1. Although there is some variation from location to location, IMO Ruth's Chris is far superior for food and, particularly, service. I hate the canned speech at Mortons when they bring the food display to the table.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Karl

      My first reaction is that Morton's is slightly more "formal" and therefore perhaps more "celebratory" for a romantic occasion... both have superb food.

      The bone-in prime rib with a nice cabernet at Morton's is pretty awesome.

    2. Well, they are both pretty good, so I don't think you can go wrong either way.

      I prefer Morton's as far as food goes, but I think their wine list leaves alot to be desired.

      If you are near or willing to drive to Boca Raton, I would recommend NY Prime for an outstanding steakhouse experience.

      1. I've never been to Mortons but would like to since it's right across from our Ruth's Chris.

        The Ruth's Chris in Dr. Philips (Orlando) is horrible. The food is acceptable but when I went the staff was so green the service more than offset any chance at a good meal. The best 'hand on deck' was the 70 year old water boy who had to make several trips to 'find' our waiter. Needless to say I was very unimpressed. If in Orlando try Vito's Chop House on I-Drive ( awesome steaks and service - figure on dinner from $40-70 a head - same as Ruth's and Morton's.

        Living just off of I Drive I can tell you all the good, bad, and ugly in this area.

        Ruth's Chris? - I've had much better Filets at the airport Marriott.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Ken Anthony

          I've eaten at the Ruth's Chris on 51st Street in NYC and in Raleigh NC and have eaten at the Morton's in Charlotte NC on two occasions.

          For my money, there is NO comparison. Ruth's wins, hands down. Morton's overseasons their meats and the ambiance, at least in Charlotte, is not relaxing. Personnel and clientele seemed equally up-tight and frantic. Not even the Ruth's in NYC was that frazzling.

        2. I prefer RUTH CHRIS over Morton's anyday..Morton's is way too snobby ( both are the same price) and Mortons rushes you out of the restaurant..

          If you are near Boca, I SECOND NY PRIME..I had one of my best steak dinners there...with terrific service !
          All 3 run the same amount of money and menus are almost identical...

          1. no comparison. ruth chris by FAR is the better of the two. that cowboy steak just cant be beat. and with the extra butter.

            1 Reply
            1. re: joe

              Delicious = Ruth's. I had a bad experience at Mortons. First time was SO-so. Second time, charred for the porterhouse for Medium-rare. Crab cakes were pathetic. Appetizers, sides, and dessert very sub-par for the price at mortons.

              The Ruth's Chris in Irvine, CA is the best one I've been to. Appetizers are pretty OK, sides are OK (Boston Market for the Price has far superior sides... HAHA). But Ruth's is clutch on Steak and has good dessert. Cheesecake, apple crumble, and CREME BRULEE. Their crusts are great. When I get the ribeye, I tell them to add bleu cheese on top. it is so good, I can't wait to go back this holiday season.

            2. c
              ChowFun (derek)

              My sister and I went to the Ruth Chris in Boca...both of our steaks were tough and tasteless! Sorry haven't been to the Morton's so can't compare. I've heard very nice things about RC, so I'm hoping that was an anomaly

              1. If you're talking Tampa, I'd skip them both and go to Bern's. Never tried Morton's, but I always try to pass on chains.

                B

                3 Replies
                1. re: BeaN

                  I'd second that, but I didn't know that there was a Morton's in Tampa now.

                  Anyway, in my experience eating way too many steakhouse expense account meals over the years, location really does matter. The original Morton's here in Chicago is nearly flawless, food wise. Same chefs and maitre d's for 30 years -- hard to replicate in 20 cities. The one in Dallas is good, DC too. But I've heard bad things about other cities. Seems to me that these places sort of rise or fall to the competition. The Ruth's Chris in Chicago is supposed to be great (never been, I avoid out of town chins here). But I have to say, my meal at RC in Tampa was easily the worst fancy steakhouse meal ever. Terrible food, terrible service. And I dislike the swimming in butter gimmick (which is no substitute for good meat) at RC as much as the meat display gimick at Morton's (though you can skip both gimmicks if you ask, which I do). Sure, though, in Tampa go to Bern's or even Charley's before the others. But you have to get the local info as between RC and Morton's.

                  1. re: JeffB

                    I also have stopped eating at Morton's unless I'm in Chicago.
                    The Morton's in Orlando stinks. Ditto midtown Manhattan. The one near the World Trade Center was good, but gone now.

                  2. re: BeaN

                    Completely agree. Not only are the steaks excellent but you get a lot more bang for your buck at Berns.

                  3. The best steak I have had was Lobel's www.lobels.com

                    mail-order.

                    Great butcher shop.

                    1. I love the Boca Raton Morton's. I'm going there tonight, as a matter of fact. Every time I've been there they have treated me like royalty and the food is wonderful, IMO. The chocolate volcano cake is wonderful too.

                      I have been to RC in Boca, but it was a wine tasting dinner, so I ate what was served. The food was very, very good. We had lamb and crab cakes and I don't remember anything else (too much wine).

                      I've wanted to go back, but haven't yet. I don't think the service there was much to write home about. Maybe they weren't used to wine tasting dinners, but it was a private room, during the week, and we were taking it kind of slow since the winemaker was talking a lot in between courses. No need for "eh" service. That's probably why I'm a little skittish about running back there any time soon, I guess.

                      10 Replies
                      1. re: OysterHo

                        I've been to Morton's in Chicago (the original), NY downtown, NY World Trade Center, both in Atlanta, Jacksonville, Palm Beach, Nashville, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington, Denver, Cleveland, and Palm Springs...as well as a handful of Ruth's Chris, and I would always prefer Morton's. However, if in Tampa, I would go to Bern's first choice, Bern's second choice, and Bern's third choice. Failing that, I would hit the Capital Grille in the International Mall.

                        1. re: steakman55

                          Ruth Chris's Hands down!
                          I wasn't even halfway my app when our steaks came out at Mortons.. They were underseasoned, the peppersauce was burned. The asparagus undercooked and underseasoned. The only thing tasty were the sauteed mushrooms and my crabcocktail which I couldn't finish, as I said before, the entrees came out....
                          Ruth Chris was sooo much better!!

                          1. re: mariekeac

                            Mortons for the spinach & mushroom side. I hate creamed spinach at RC.

                            1. re: beteez

                              If Morton's and Ruths Chris are your only two choices, go with Morton's. Ruths Chris is overrated.

                              1. re: TexSkills

                                Ruths over Mortons any day

                              2. re: beteez

                                boston market for the win

                                1. re: eezerik

                                  LOL! They have the best mac n cheese of all 3 places!

                          2. re: OysterHo

                            Well, 2 years later and I finally made it to RC a few weeks ago. If you like your food drowning in a pool of melted (browned) butter, go for it. I don't mind a pat of butter on top of my filet, but this poor filet was swimming in it! It was an awful presentation. The "steamed" green beans were also swimming in butter, although not as much. The salad with asparagus in it was wonderful, so I will say something good about RC. :)

                            I went for the summer special, $30 prix fix menu. When we ordered dinner, I ordered what I thought was a $15 glass of Caymus cab. Oops, I read the wrong line on the wine menu, it was actually $28.

                            When the bill came, I complained and then they showed me the menu. Yes, I felt kind of stupid, but on the other hand why would I order a $30 dinner special and a $28 glass of wine? I am mad at myself for that one, but disappointed that they didn't feel sorry for me and offer something. split the difference maybe? It was clear that I was upset (not mad, but seriously on the verge of tears LOL). No pity to be found.

                            I won't go back and it's not because of the wine incident. Just not impressed with the food overall.

                            1. re: OysterHo

                              In terms of the wine, why should they split the difference with you or pity your mistake? They have no idea if you're on a budget with your alcohol choices regardless if you had the $30 dinner or not. A lot of people eat cheap so they can drink expensively or a lot! I think it's the diners responsibility IMO.

                              1. re: Jacey

                                I had no expectations! I was merely hoping and was disappointed, that's all. I stated in my post:

                                "I am mad at myself for that one, but disappointed that they didn't feel sorry for me and offer something. split the difference maybe? It was clear that I was upset (not mad, but seriously on the verge of tears LOL). No pity to be found."

                                I knew someone would voice an objection to my post LOL. Like I said, I won't go back ONLY because of the food.

                          3. I have eaten at Morton's in Chicago and Denver several times, if you want a quality meal for a special occassion chicago is excellent. I also do highly recommend Carnivours in Milwaukee WI.. Nothing beats a Good Butcher Filet. Check out Lake Geneva Country Meats in Lake Geneva WI if you want a good steak you can season and Grill yourslef.... ENJOY

                            1. More interesting sides and desserts at Ruth's, for one thing. But one minor detail drives me nuts at Morton's: The small loaf of bread they bring to the table along with the butter comes with a caveman-sized serrated knife. No knife for the butter except that, which is almost too large to get into the butter tub. AND THEN they don't replace that knife after you've used it for butter and perhaps for the salad. At those prices, you'd think they'd be able to replace it with a clean one, at least.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: lemons

                                You are right about that detail. However, when I've been to Morton's, the food has been so great that a detail like that would (and did) slip right by me. Perfectly prepared medium rare blackened ribeye is one of my fondest memories.

                                I absolutely love the beef at Morton's. The last time, our waiter was a PROFESSIONAL waiter and inappropriately snooty (like you would expect in a different city than San Antonio - maybe New York, my home town of Dallas, or LA), and was a delight to behold. He made sure that everything was perfect in his condescending way with the rest of the staff.

                                Between the excellent meal, the fantastic Jordon wine and our waiter - it was a helluva (helluvan) experience!

                              2. the sides at RC are way better than at Mortons and I am a sucker for their creamed spinach. I have also discovered RC's stuffed chicken. Yes I know it's a steak restaurant but this is unbelievable. I have been to Mortons a number of times and am not nuts about it.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: smartie

                                  I have to agree with you there. I liked the sides better at RC than at Morton's. I wish I could have tried the creamed spinach though...

                                2. Having been to both, I prefer Mortons over RC. I find the steaks to be just a little bit better than RC. Although, like most chains, the service and quality can vary from location to location. The South Coast Plaza (Costa Mesa/Santa Ana, CA) Mortons tends to be better service wise than the Anaheim location. I would have to think that is has to do with fact that the Anaheim Mortons gets more convention/visitor business than South Coast Plaza.

                                  I also love the lyonaisse (sp?) potato .... very yummy! The cajun ribeye paired with a good syrah is also amazing! As a side note, Mortons has a special going on, $109 for two, each person gets a salad, a filet, a seafood side, share two sides (it says a potato and a vegetable, but you can pretty much order two sides) and each person gets a desert. http://www.mortons.com/steak/menu.php... We usually go in every other month for this, they've had this special for over a year now! (thanks to the down economy

                                  )

                                  They only place I haven't been that I have heard has better steaks than Mortons is Donovan's Steak and Chop house in San Diego.

                                  1. I have been to many Ruth's Chris throughout North America including Dallas, Jackson, Orlando, San Francisco, Beverly Hills, Toronto, Little Rock, Chicago, Seattle, Mobile, Manhatten, Washington, Boston, Minneapolis, Las Vegas and Nashville. I also been to the original Mortons in Chicago and a couple of other Mortons and can say that Ruth's Chris is superior to Mortons in my mind and also Ruth's Chris has been entirely consistent across all of the RC restaurants I have visited.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: Aardvark

                                      We are big Morton's fans, even though I have been to Ruth's Chris, and admit that they have a wider variety of sides, although the mac and cheese that is now served at Morton's has kicked this up a notch.
                                      There is 1 big difference between the 2 in the meat department. Morton's meat all comes from the same source, where as each RC does their own thing. They are not all company owned like Morton's, so there can be a lot of variation.
                                      As far as the person mentioning not being given a new steak knife after having butter and salad, that must be something that the particular restaurant you have been to doesn't do, however most do replace your knife, which I actually always thought was a waste. Right now they have a great special on, but you really have to know to ask. It's $99 for 2, includes a choice of salad (Morton's or Caesar) for each, petite filet paired with crab cake (which is great), shrimp Alexander or scallops, 1 side for each, and 1 warm chocolate godiva cake or key lime pie per person. You can upgrade to a different steak if you want. My son's love the cajun rib eye, and you can upgrade to that. I think their warm chocolate godiva cake is one of the best chocolate desserts served anywhere. The best thing about Morton's is that no matter what city you turn up in, when you go to Morton's, you know exactly what you are going to get, and know you are going to get a great meal.