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Dec 26, 2008 08:15 AM

NY steakhouse...worth it?

I am coming back to NY in less than a week and am starting to look at the places I would like to eat and I always was tempted to try a steakhouse but put off by the prices. I don't mind paying for a meal that I would not make myself, but I make such good steaks in summertime on the BBQ that I am afraid that I won't know the difference between those and the one I would pay 45$ for!

I looked at a couple of classics like Wolfgang's and Porter House but I'd like the opinions of real carnivores like me.....Is it worth paying for?

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  1. I do like Wolfgangs and find it is worth it,.... every so often.

    Lugars is better but has the added cost of a cab.

    1 Reply
    1. re: msny98

      subway stops right by lugars.......

    2. Dont' fool around - just go to Keen's. It has an unsurpassed porterhouse (no you can't make this at home) and is the best overall restaurant of all the NYC steakhouses. If it is cold out, sit in the pub room by the fireplace. Again, the history of this place alone, you can not reproduce at home.

      5 Replies
      1. re: tbear

        my take on "don't fool around" is to go to Peter Luger....train/cab/horse & buggy....Keen's porterhouse is good, but Luger's is in another class. Yes...Keen's has a classic atmosphere, but Luger is the best in show.

        1. re: drumwine

          I don't think I will consider Luger as "in another class" when compared to Keens. I agree with steakman55 said below that when it comes to dry aged porterhouse, Keens is right up there with Luger. Luger and Keens IMO get a tie in their steaks and nostalgic decor, but Keens have other components to the dining experience that Luger does not necessarily provide - the great service (I never had bad service at Luger, but I wouldn't consider it great), fantastic bar and drinks (their Manhattan and whisky selection is awesome), being able to use credit card if you want to, etc. No surprise, the convenient location is also a plus.

        2. re: tbear

          Agree 100%. As an out of towner who has sampled all NYC steakhouses, most many times, Keen's is in the top 3 consistently for me. While all of them serve USDA Prime, only some serve dry aged, and Keen's (dry aged) portherhouse is tops. Enjoy as much as Luger's without the longer drive, and unless you are ordering your steaks for the grill from Lobel's or some similar top drawer butcher, you ain't tasted nothing yet.

          1. re: steakman55

            i just took my dad for a late lunch at keens and you know what, the place is just perfect. service, scotch, meat...ive been a lifer at lugers but i think keens has it beat these days.

            1. re: steakman55

              Hi steakman55,

              I think you can order Luger's steaks online. Have you (or anyone out there) ever tried?

          2. How does a lunch of Filet Tips @ Del Frisco's sound for less $12.00 .....


            1. Hi...

              i like your question and sympathize with the concerns...

              of all the steak places i like Keens best myself (for the history, vibe, and the food), but personally (purely opinion here) i do find that the prices of steakhouses in general are out of wack with the rest of dining in NYC in terms of a cost-satisfaction ratio...often, i've steered budget-conscious meat-lovers towards French bistros for their steak: because for about half or 2/3rds the price of a steak at Sparks/Keens/Lugers, they can get a delicious filet mignon au poivre or tangy hanger steak w/ frites...if you're a big fan of dry-aged porterhouse, by all means, go to Keens or Lugers instead...but for many i think the price/carnivorous-pleasure calculus tips in favor of a bistro (or one's summertime bbq)

              Personally, i think highly of places that offer prime rib (like Keens does) because it's not something you can replicate as easily on a grill at i think prime rib is sometimes worth the stretch, dollar-wise...

              But a compromise might be going to the pub room at Keens...(one of my fav rooms in NYC in any case)...there you can get a smaller order of prime rib and/or other meat dishes at lower prices, but w/ the same high quality and old-school steakhouse atmosphere...if you are hooked, then you can decide whether to splurge on future meals in the main dining room and/or at Lugers, Sparks, Wolfgang, etc...think of the Keens pub room as a nice gateway drug to hardcore dry-aged steakhouse blow-outs...

              3 Replies
              1. re: Simon

                I'm not sure you want to get the smaller versions at Keens. I greatly prefer the regular sized mutton chop and the king's cut prime rib is a lot better than the english cut, especially if you like your meat rare.

                1. re: SomeRandomIdiot

                  I think someone did complain about the english cut prime rib served at the pub in a previous post. I have orderd the smaller sized mutton chops at the pub and it was fine.

                  1. re: kobetobiko

                    It's not that the smaller portion isn't tasty but I like my stuff extremely rare. On the mutton chop the entire section around bone (which you don't get in the pub version) is almost raw.

              2. Thank you all for your great answers! I will definitely check out Keen's but I looked at the menus of Wolfgang and Keen online and Wolfgang's seemed more appealing. The place looks nice also at Wolfgang's but there is no pictures of Keen's. My hotel is right by Time Warner center (I am staying at the 6 Columbus) so that is why I was thinking of Porter house. The view of Central park while eating was a plus for me. Anyone been to Porter House...or is it one of those Time warner restaurants that is not worth the money?

                4 Replies
                1. re: cricri7

                  Don't choose Porter House simply for location. It is not in contention with Keens, Wolfgangs (my in Manhattan fave) or Lugars (best overall)

                  1. re: msny98

                    You asked a question, and got a pretty close to a consensus (rare, indeed, on this site), yet you are ignoring Chowhounders advice to go to Keen's. Wolfgang's is an IMITATION of Luger's - though they do have a damn fine steak. Luger's and Keen's are the real deal.

                    1. re: tbear

                      if the do a damn fine steak, then i don't care if they are an imitation of rich little

                      1. re: thew

                        This thread is basically correct, IMHO. For a steak that you can't replicate at home, go to (in order of my personal priority) Luger, Keens, Sparks and Wolfgang's. Please report back...