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Smith & Wollenskys

t
Terry44 Feb 26, 2007 03:52 AM

I've just enjoyed a good 5 day vacation in Manhattan and had the pleasure of a really good steak here, the service was really good and the waiter (Carl) really knew his stuff, we took the kids along and he made a great fuss of them and treated them well, the only down side I thought was that the tables were really crammed in and close together, other than that it was very good

Just wondering what you other Chow Hounds thought of the place?

We also had a very enjoyable evening in Virgils bar and grill just off of Times Square (I know but I was a tourist!) the food was great and my wife and my kids had a really enjoyable time there, anyone else out there had a meal or two in Virgils and if yes what did you think?

  1. d
    david sprague Feb 26, 2007 05:42 AM

    Virgil's is a perfectly fine place to grab a bite and a beer. it's not mind-blowing BBQ, but it's pretty solid overall (and they serve Kentcuky-style lamb, which is a rarity in these parts). i actually like their brisket quite a bit, and think their fried chicken -- while hit or miss -- can be pretty great. ribs kinda suck, though. atmosphere is fun and service friendly, competent, sometimes scattered....wouldn't travel for a meal there, but you can do a whole lot worse in times square

    1 Reply
    1. re: david sprague
      prunefeet Mar 1, 2007 08:55 AM

      What is Kentucky style lamb??

    2. bakedbeans Feb 26, 2007 07:21 AM

      S&W has the best steak in the city in my opinion. The bone in cajun ribeye is to die for.

      1. m
        marlie202 Feb 26, 2007 09:00 AM

        excellent steaks

        1. angelo04 Feb 26, 2007 09:09 AM

          S&W is one of the best in my humble opinion, blows the doors off of lugers!

          8 Replies
          1. re: angelo04
            t
            tpigeon Feb 26, 2007 06:57 PM

            That is just silly.

            1. re: tpigeon
              angelo04 Feb 27, 2007 09:08 AM

              Why is that silly? Luger's is out of the way, over priced, they expect me to share my steak, and most irratiating, they slice it for me. I want my steak whole, in one piece. The waiters have snarky attitudes which is suppose to be part of the allure. Please.

              1. re: angelo04
                v
                Vinous Feb 27, 2007 01:13 PM

                Luger's is a quick taxi ride over a bridge and it's not a big deal to get there, unless you are so Manhattan-centric that any travel over or under water is a big deal, in which case there is so much good food that you are missing.

                Luger's price is competetive with other NYC steakhouses; it is not over priced.
                Also, there is no expectation that you share, except if you order a porterhouse which would likely be too big to eat by yourself, but then again you are getting both fillet and sirloin. As for the slicing, have you ever asked them not to slice it?

                I have never had a gruff waiter at Luger's, which is surprising given the folklore about snarky waiters, and I've been there 10+ times.

                My complaint about Luger's is that the winelist and glassware positively sucks, and they have no interest in changing it.

                1. re: Vinous
                  j
                  jsmitty Feb 27, 2007 02:33 PM

                  i am not thinking wine when i go to lugers!

                  1. re: jsmitty
                    v
                    Vinous Feb 27, 2007 02:36 PM

                    I am. Steak and . . . beer? Coke? Water? Not for me. Give me a Bordeaux or Barolo to pair with the steak and the meal is complete.

                    1. re: Vinous
                      j
                      jsmitty Mar 2, 2007 07:41 AM

                      i hear you

                  2. re: Vinous
                    angelo04 Mar 1, 2007 08:51 AM

                    No problem heading into any of the borough's. I just don't think Lugers' is worth it. I just hate it. (Hates a strong word. I would eat it on your dime.) I am dissaponted that you suggest that the porterhouse is too big for one to eat. You underestimate my eating abilities, after all I am a hound.

                  3. re: angelo04
                    t
                    tpigeon Feb 27, 2007 03:22 PM

                    Because the fact of the matter is on S&W's best day it is not as good as Lugers. It is silly to think otherwise.

              2. guttergourmet Feb 26, 2007 11:23 AM

                Enjoyed the prime rib at the S&W grill more than Keens

                1. j
                  jsmitty Feb 26, 2007 04:36 PM

                  Is the grill at Wollensky's markedly different than the restaurant proper?

                  1. NiKoLe1625 Feb 26, 2007 07:01 PM

                    i'm not usually a steak person, but S&W is great. the only place where i will actually go out of my way to order red meat!

                    1. rootytootyfreshnfrooty Feb 27, 2007 06:11 AM

                      Smith and Wollensky used to be really good when it was Manny Wolf's Chop House!

                      1. s
                        sherm13 Feb 27, 2007 12:58 PM

                        There are much better steak restaurants in NYC......I found S&W very disappointing and mostly a tourist trap.

                        Try Wolfgangs, Lugers, BLT Prime, Craftsteak, Stiphouse, Del Friscos......all better than S&W in my opinion

                        1. NAtiveNewYorker Feb 27, 2007 01:04 PM

                          S&W and their grill is overrated. Go to Strip House.

                          1. v
                            Vinous Feb 27, 2007 01:16 PM

                            S & W's steaks are very good indeed, but within the context of NYC steakhouses, there are too many others that are more compelling that S&W. However, if you factor in that they allow BYOB (provided that the wine you bring is not also on their wine list), then S&W becomes extremely compelling for oenophile carnivores.

                            1. steakman55 Feb 27, 2007 01:50 PM

                              Smith & Wollensky is mediocre at best and the Grill is worse. If you want a decent steak, go to Sparks or for a chain, Capital Grille.

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