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Bourbon Steak

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  • mikek Mar 15, 2008 02:31 PM
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Has anyone made it to Bourbon Steak? I am trying it out on Thursday for a birthday dinner and am quite excited. Any advice on what dishes to make a point to order or avoid? How is the space itself and service? Thank you for your help/recs as always Chow Community.

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  1. A good review was posted here ->
    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/478821

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    I still haven't tried but have heard great reports from others as well.

    16 Replies
    1. re: Frodnesor

      Yea, I saw that one. I was hoping for something a little more recent, see if things had settled in after the opening, if things have changed for the better or worse since that review. I saw the one on the sentinel's website, but took that one with a box of salt, since the "critic" lambasted Mr. Mina's use of "three of everything on the plate," apparently unaware that is his trademark at his namesake restaurant.

      1. re: mikek

        Also got a glowing review in New Times ->
        http://www.miaminewtimes.com/2008-02-...

        I could have sworn there was a good review in Miami Herald as well but its website has been helpfully redesigned in a way to make it nigh impossible to actually find old reviews (and by old I mean, well, within the past 2 months).

        I find Mina's trio thing a bit contrived and overdone myself, but I've heard the food is great.

        1. re: mikek

          I am the person who posted the intial review. I returned last weekend! Honestly, I think you will be pleased. The service was much better and the room was packed, though many of the patrons did not appear to be locals. This time, I did not opt for fish and enjoyed a classic filet, steamed asparagus, and a bibb wedge salad. Those selections were well prepared albiet straight forward. We also chose the trio (yes three!) of mashed potatoes which was far too rich and salty for my taste. Other tables were ordring the lobster pot pie which looked interesting. The molton cake was a real hit for dessert. If you are looking for gorgeous decor, this is the place. If you are a true foodie and looking for imaginative creativity, Bourbon may not do the trick. It is called Bourbon STEAK----and for that, it certainly passes the test.

          1. re: Debbie

            Do you think the drive from Downtown is worth it, as opposed to the Forge or Prime? It seems like this is still a bit more "fine dining" than the other two, with amuses before the meal and whatnot?

            1. re: mikek

              Yes, I think it is worth the drive, especially if you are seeking a celebratory type of atmosphere. I certainly prefer Bourbon Steak to the Forge, but I personally don't care for the scene there. Prime 112, on the other hand, has a more contemporary vibe than Bourbon----but Bourbon is more upscale and leans toward fine dining. And you will be seated promptly and graciously at Bourbon as opposed to the usual wait at peak hours at P112.

          2. re: mikek

            Heard the chef left, and he's only been there a few months.

            http://kitschn.blogspot.com/2008/03/r...

            1. re: lax2mia

              Somehow I doubt that the dude from Forge was really the key to the whole place. Mina's got several restaurants around the country now and when you can pull that off successfully, it comes from the top (though obviously you do need good people to execute it "on the ground"). Interesting he should be leaving so quickly though.

              1. re: Frodnesor

                I went to Mina's a few weeks ago and was pretty underwhelmed. Decor and ambiance were nice, and i loved the bar in the front of the room. Cocktail list was extensive and very tasty. slightly surprised when i walked in and they were thumping Damien Marley on the stereo. i love that album but LOL. anyway, i have eaten at Mina's in the Bellagio and in San Fran as well and our location here just doesnt compare, on pretty much any level.

                Biggest difference was service, which was pretty shoddy. At the other locations service was always impeccable, here not even close. Waited a little too long for the waiter to show, then he had this attitude, not horrible or anything, but sort of with his nose in the air. Like this is a great restaurant and he is a great waiter and for us to feel privileged to be there or something. I know its a rough description but he just gave us an off-feeling. Also he didnt have much help even though there appeared to be plenty of staff sort of just standing around and/or congregating near the middle of the restaurant.
                Our table was in the back corner near a door and at some point during the meal a drunken fool went in and out a few times, slamming the door. The last time he went through the door, my dad told the guy to take it easy and try not to slam the doors so much. This idiot went on screaming rant cursing and dropping f-bombs telling my dad and then me to 'bring it' etc. even once back at his table about 20 feet away it was clearly audible this kid making a fool of himself and embarrassing his mortified family. All eyes in the house were on this schmuck. His brother apologized profusely several times, during, after, and when they left the restaurant. Surprisingly, no one from the restaurant, not management nor the waiters, ever came by either table to either apologize or to ask this guy to behave. NO ONE! I mean the servers just continued as if nothing had happened. Thats a little ridiculous.

                Sorry i know i am ranting. As for the food:

                Amuse bouche:
                trio of duck fat fries - absolutely delicious, i see why they are frequently mentioned.

                Starters:
                Lettuce cups with crab "louis" and the crab cakes were both mediocre at best. I would never order them again.
                Beef and tuna tartare's were both pretty good, and the tableside presentation was nice.

                Mains:
                Lamb chops (good)
                American Kobe rib"eye" (good not great)
                Miso glazed cod (ok)
                Bone in ribeye (very good)

                Sides:
                trio of mashed potatoes (good, esp. the lobster if thats your style)
                marrow bones (very good)
                spinach souffle (good)
                truffled mac n cheese (good, but pretty standard truffle mac)

                Overall, food not bad, but definitely below expectations. For the price, i could pick ten places i would rather go to in miami, no question.
                They definitely have alot of work cut out for them to bring this place up to high standard, and then even more work for them to bring it Mina's standards.
                Oh yeah valet was $15. lol

                1. re: dmo305

                  I agree the service was "shoddy." Our waiter and the staff was nice as could be, just very come and go. Definitely needs improvement. Thought the food eas good though, right on par with Prime 112.

                  For others that may go, you needed to get the parking ticket stamped at either the bar or hostess stand and it is free.

                  1. re: mikek

                    funny thing, i did get it stamped. maybe it was just 'mess with dmo' night at bourbon. our waiter fit your description.
                    i will def go back to mina's and try it again but probably not for a few months. for now i'm def sticking with P112.

                    1. re: dmo305

                      Yea, it is a shame b/c both have their plusses and both have their minuses. I found the steaks at Mina better. The sides were about the same. While Prime's service is perhaps a bit more "with it" and more consistent, it was nice to be sat down immediately and graciously rather than being cast aside upon entry for an hour and a half beyond reservation time.

                  2. re: dmo305

                    Glad you mentioned he has a spot in SF. Im headed there next week for basically dinner and then off to San Jose for work. Funny because I noticed he also has a place in San Jose that I walked by every day last year when I was there for a convention. This year Im staying at that Marriott and will likely check it out. Thanks for posting more about Bourbon Steak though. Ive been wanting to go, but more for the bourbon selection than the food lol.

                    1. re: Blind Mind

                      yeah the san fran spot i believe was his first. i also don't know if i mentioned it in my earlier posts but i love eating at mina's and have had several outstanding dinners there (once in SF, several times in LV). i realize my post above was quite negative and while i def wasn't happy with my bourbon steak experience part of that is definitely a result of very high expectations...

                      1. re: Blind Mind

                        He doesn't just have a spot in SF, he has a flagship. 2 Michelin stars. Top 5 in the Zagat guide. It probably makes Bourbon Steak look like a Wendy's.

                        1. re: lax2mia

                          Exactly. Is the San Fran location higher rated than Mina's in the Bellagio? I think the Bellagio location is the most impressive IMO.

                          1. re: dmo305

                            The SF restaurant is clearly the flagship and is the only one where Mina himself is actually listed as head chef.