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Mark Joseph, New Steakhouse in Lower Manhattan

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  • George Lynch Feb 27, 2001 10:26 AM
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A friend told me yesterday about a new steakhouse on Water Street just north of the South Street Seaport, off Peck Slip. The name of the place is Mark Joseph's, and I think it's been open about a month.

Anyone know anything about this place? I'm curious to hear what others might think, if anyone's tried it.

I think I'm gonna give it a try, based on my friend's recommendation, so I'll report back when I do.

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  1. haven't been there but it's supposed to be from the owners or workers of Peter Luger's. same family style Porterhouse steak served at mark joseph as at lugers. in new york mag article, i think it even mentioned that they serve the desserts the same way too with some of that shclag. hope this helps.

    5 Replies
    1. re: kevin

      Thank, Kevin. Sounds like it might be worth a visit.

      1. re: George Lynch

        Went last night with 7 co-workers. All of us are veterans of Lugers, and saw the NY Mag article. We placed what is considered the "classic" Luger order, so I'll give a brief rundown comparing it to Lugers. BTW, the manager, waiters, and cooks are primarily Lugers graduates according to our waiter, who spent 10 years in Williamsburg himself.

        Locale: A little hidden, on Water St. near the bridge Cafe. Somewhat difficult to find - make sure you know where you're going.

        Decor: Nicer than Lugers, white linen, attractive bar.

        Staff: Very accomodating and polite, and on top of things.

        Drinks: Full bar, decent varied wine list.

        Bread: Same onion rolls, and a few other rolls & bread types in the basket. Didn't seem quite as fresh, probably due to the lower turnover here.

        Sauce: 100% If not Luger sauce, an amazing recreation.

        Shrimp cocktail: 100% same.

        Tomatoes & Onion: 95%. Tomato didn't seem quite as ripe, but it is winter.

        Bacon: A "secret" appetizer at Lugers, and not on the menu - any number of hand-cut smoky slices can be had (I believe it's the bacon they use for the friend German platter.) At Mark Joseph it is on the menu under "sides". 100% the same.

        Steak: I'd give it a 95%. Same cuts, same presentation, same overturned saucer under the steak plate to pool the juices. Meat seemed almost perfectly Lugeresque, maybe a bit less aged and tender.

        Creamed spinach: Not as good. Lugers is bright & firm; here is was firm, but very dark green and not as fresh-tasting.

        Fried potato plate: I never have more than a tablespoon (can't waste valuable stomach space.) Seemed OK.

        Dessert: Strudel conspicuously absent. Schlag (whipped cream) conspicuously present on every plate.

        Prices: Same.

        Rest of menu: Looked great. Lobster, salmon, burgers, other cuts of meat (not just steak for 1/2/4/etc. One of our party had a 3-lb. lobster with his steak and liked it.

        Overall impression: Go. This place is great. If you're a city-dweller, this place more than makes it worthwhile to avoid the haul to Brooklyn, wait for a table, etc. I'd say go to Brooklyn if you want the original experience and parking, but for after/during work this is the place. My whole party left very satisfied. For steak downtown, I shall never darken the door of Mortons again.

        1. re: wayne

          Dined at Mark Josephs last night. Excellent steak crunchy charred on the outside, perfectly rare/medium rare and tender on the inside. MF had the Prime Rib and declared it the most flavorful she's had in town. Baked clams were a little watery IMO, but the clams and the seasoning were good. Caesar salad was excellent and when Wheels and MF requested anchovies, they were brought out ceremoniously on a plate and laid upon their salads by the waiter. Sauteed spinach had a lovely bright flavor, and the potatoes were crunchy and good. Service was excellent; friendly and efficient. Only soft spot was the wine list. Way too much California and the prices climb at an alarming rate. Steak houses rarely seem to be able to get the wine list thang right, though so I guess there's no surprise there. The manager asked us how everyhing was on the way out the door and I told him we were very happy, but a little disappointed with the wine we had (a '98 Shiraz at $40-some-odd), which was pretty tight and refused to open up no matter how much swirling, aerating, or centrifuging we applied - it was just not really drinking yet. He was solicitous and mentioned that he was getting some Penfolds on the list soon, which is good news. Some affordable Rhoney stuff and perhaps some other South of France wines would also be welcome additions to the list here.

          1. re: Roger Lee

            As far as steakhouses go Sparks has a very good wine list.They also have half bottles. 1997 was an excellent year for Californian Cabernet Sauvignon. For delicious food and an interesting varied wine list I lke Etat Unis.Choices include Chinon,St. Joseph,Vouvray,Savennieres and Rioja.The menu depends on what's fresh and in season.

          2. re: wayne

            Gotta concur with this opinion; a bit less Brahaus than Lugers, but still very attentive staff; terrific moist steak, and a standout appetizer is the hefty bowl of terrific mussels marinara. Great. It's not Luger, but I'd rank it up with the likes of Sparks and Chimmichurri Grill for the steak in NYC.