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Peter Luger=nothing but hype

Slob Apr 2, 2009 03:05 PM

On our last trip to NYC, my girlfriend and I made reservations at Lugers after reading many comments about what a great steak place it is.

Nothing but hype. The steak was virtually tasteless. It tasted completely unseasoned and was extraordinarily fatty. I understand that good steaks need fat for flavor, but this one had way too much.

The hyped onion rings were a brick of greasy, tasteless twigs. I was expecting something great, and, instead, it was a brick of nonsense that you would expect to receive at Ruby Tuesday.

And to top it all off, the waiter was incredibly rude. He wore a scowl the entire time and acted like he was doing us a favor to take our order. He was so rude that we almost left prior to receiving our steak. I wish we had.

We thought we would salvage the meal with one of those purportedly great sundaes, and it stunk too. It was nothing you couldn't get at any run of the mill eatery.

-----
Peter Luger Steak House
178 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11211

  1. c
    currymouth Apr 2, 2009 03:35 PM

    I am truly sorry you had such a bad experience at PL. Having said that,I am also quite surprised that your steak was "Virtually Tasteless". PL can be faulted for many things,Rude service, watery sides,old boy atmosphere,cash only policy, but never for tasteless steaks, which just about every premium steakhouse from Palm to Cut trip over themselves to emulate. Perhaps you should try Smith and Wollensky's marinated Cajun Ribeye next time, Plenty seasoning there.

    1 Reply
    1. re: currymouth
      Slob Apr 2, 2009 05:48 PM

      Thanks for the tip on S&W. I'm not necessarily looking for a steak drowned in seasoning. However, the one I had a PL tasted like it didn't even have salt or pepper on it. I think I'll give Keens a shot on my next trip to NYC. If their steak is similarly tasteless, then I'll just realize that I need to cook my steaks at home if I want a really good one.

    2. b
      babaganoushface Apr 2, 2009 03:42 PM

      I wouldn't call the steak tasteless, but overrated? Yes. However, the bacon @PL is phenomenal to quite phenomenal. My favorite steakhouse is the Strip House. Also, in my opinion, Sparks has the best strip in the city. Wolfgang's is pretty good as well.

      1. l
        Lau Apr 2, 2009 07:10 PM

        what type of steak did you order at lugers? if you didn't get the porterhouse that seems to be a common mistake (their other steaks are not the best out there)

        also the bacon is a must order, its possible its the best thing there

        1. a
          addictedtolunch Apr 3, 2009 01:18 AM

          PL can be uneven- but "worst"? That doesn't ring true. I've done consistently better there, at least on the Porterhouse, than at Smith & Wolensky, Spark's, Wolfgang's (not bad on the main item at least), Homestead, Palm, and can't remember where else. And PL is not exactly "known" for the onion rings at all- they just added that to the menu during the spinach scare a while ago and then it stayed.

          Rude waiter? Sometimes- and I've complained. Somebody else must have too about this particular guy. The guy is gone.

          So, sorry your night sucked, but because their steak hits the mark 3 out of 4 times, which beats the average of the others, I'll be back.

          4 Replies
          1. re: addictedtolunch
            l
            Lau Apr 3, 2009 04:26 AM

            yeah that is the other thing about that place...the service has always been known to be brisk, im not a fan of it, but its the way it is supposed to be although there is obviously a difference between straight rude and brisk

            1. re: Lau
              baldwinwood Apr 3, 2009 05:10 AM

              You go to Lugars for steak, if you want great service, go to the Four Season. The waiters are what they are, you can love em or leave em. Lugars is just like every other restaurant, if you go there enough and sit in the same section or ask for a specific waiter, you'll have no isssues. Here s what i do know, many of the waiters HATE waiting on Europeans, due to the fact MOST tip like crap. Next time you go to Lugars, do yourself a favor, DONT ask for a menu. There are a handful of things you need to know; shrimp cocktail, tomato and onion, bacon, lamb chops for appys, only order your steaks in twos(for 4 people order two -twos) creamed spinach, hash browns and dont forget the schlag with dessert.

              1. re: baldwinwood
                Slob Apr 3, 2009 02:45 PM

                There won't be a next time. And I'm about the farthest thing there is from a European. I start my tip at 30% and work up or down based on service. There's no excuse for the "service" this guy gave us. And if that's what they're teaching there, then shame on them. If people wear that shart as a badge of honor, then that's twisted too.

                Luger is overhyped. It's a bloated dinosaur that survives based off hype. I've had some phenomenal meals in NYC on many visits, but this place ranked at the bottom for us. The steak was OK, but it's nowhere near good enough to warrant a return based on all the other negatives. I can cook a better steak at home with my eyes closed.

                1. re: Slob
                  f
                  Fleur Apr 3, 2009 08:27 PM

                  Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but you cannot buy the quality of steak served at PL. Not even at the best fanciest butcher in town.

          2. s
            StheJ Apr 3, 2009 06:32 AM

            Slob:

            As your opinion is clearly so far out of line with the consensus on this board and certainly my view, perhaps you could give us an example of a steak restaurant that would meet your standards?

            13 Replies
            1. re: StheJ
              b
              Brklynbobby Apr 3, 2009 07:17 AM

              I have to agree with Slob. I went with two other people, had the Porterhouse, tomato and onion, creamed spinach, homefries (forgot to order the bacon). With tax and tip the bill was almost $300. None of were very impressed with anything. We will not be back.

              I'm sorry, the cocktails were great.

              1. re: Brklynbobby
                Slob Apr 3, 2009 02:47 PM

                Exactly, Brklynbobby. It was merely OK. The sides were horrible. The service bordered on insanely bad. And the dessert was nothing. The bill didn't meet what was delivered.

                1. re: Slob
                  f
                  FAL May 2, 2009 05:46 AM

                  Slob is right on the money. It is not thee same.

              2. re: StheJ
                c
                cimui Apr 3, 2009 11:21 AM

                I think Slob's take is a bit overstated, but I do agree with him/her that PL is overrated. (I also think Keen's is overrated -- especially the "mutton" steak.) I have enjoyed steaks at Craftsteak, more.

                I think oftentimes, it's a mistake to assume there is a board consensus about a given place. In many cases, opposing viewpoints aren't given much attention because certain 'hounds are far more vocal about their opinions and far more aggressive about clashing with opposing viewpoints. And there's always the bandwagon effect. If you hear that everyone else likes a place, after a while, many of us are prone to like that place, too, even if this revises an initial opinion.

                So... just want to note: Slob, I respect your viewpoint, appreciate your "contrarian" thread and to a certain extent agree with it. I don't think PL is absolutely dreadful, but it's not as fantastic as some say it is.

                1. re: cimui
                  l
                  Lau Apr 3, 2009 12:14 PM

                  I think there are three issues with people's wide swath of opinions on lugers:
                  1) "mis-ordering": there is alot of "mis-ordering" that happens where people order all the wrong things at luger's (i.e. they order a filet or something like that)
                  2) personal taste around cuts of steak: also think there is also a crowd that just doesn't like the porterhouse cut (i.e. its not for their tastes and they aren't really going to like a porterhouse anywhere), which is perfectly fine since taste is a very intangible matter of opinion. For me, the porterhouse is my favorite cut of steak (american style), so i'm a big fan. I haven't found a better porterhouse cut better than luger's and b&j
                  3) types of steakhouses: this kind of goes to point #1, but the other thing is that i think people are of the view that "a steakhouse is a steakhouse" and i disagree b/c i think different steakhouses are better or worse at different cuts of meat. As i said before, I think luger's and ben & jacks (which i go to more often) is not the best at other cuts of steak outside of the porterhouse. also i think their sides are weak with the exception of the bacon which i think is exceptional (perhaps better than the steak)

                  1. re: Lau
                    c
                    cimui Apr 3, 2009 12:56 PM

                    I think this is a good analysis, Lau. Steak -- especially aged steak -- varies a tremendous amount from place to place. And certainly a great deal of how much we enjoy a steak is subjective! In my case, I like the porterhouse cut just fine, but just don't think Luger's always does a good job of bringing out its full (natural) flavor. I also think I've had this cut better marbled at other places.

                    (The best aged porterhouse steak I've had in NYC was actually not purchased in a restaurant, but from Lobel's.)

                    1. re: Lau
                      c
                      currymouth Apr 3, 2009 01:23 PM

                      I remember my first dry aged porterhouse, and also remembered that the first bites struck me as tasting "funny", but I grew up with grass fed beef from Argentina or old water buffalo depending what was on the shelves that week. We would marinate and season it to within an inch of it's life.
                      My point is perhaps the OP might not be used to the distinctive taste of dry aged beef, again I don't know the OP's history or even where he lives .

                      1. re: currymouth
                        Slob Apr 3, 2009 02:52 PM

                        curry, I eat dry aged steak all the time and love it when cooked and seasoned properly. I also cook and eat grass fed steaks quite a bit and love them too. My problem was not an agreeable palate. It was a tasteless overhyped steak, sorry ass sides, and putrescent service.

                        1. re: Slob
                          c
                          currymouth Apr 3, 2009 02:57 PM

                          Fair Enough....

                    2. re: cimui
                      Slob Apr 3, 2009 02:49 PM

                      Exactly, cimui. I'm not one to fall for hype. And I'm no follower. I wanted to go in there with a clean slate and just judge the place on what they delivered. And it was overall a miserable experience. We couldn't wait to leave. The OK steak didn't make up at all for all the other faults. The thought of ever returning to PL will NEVER cross our minds.

                      1. re: cimui
                        f
                        Fleur Apr 3, 2009 08:29 PM

                        It isn't just consensus on CH. Peter Luger has been given the highest rating on Zagat...28..for 15 years.

                        It is always rated the #1 steak in the country in every survey.

                        1. re: Fleur
                          Slob Apr 3, 2009 09:47 PM

                          Hype. Fake hype.

                          1. re: Slob
                            Ms.Munchie Apr 6, 2009 08:10 AM

                            After reading everyone's post - I must say that I too tried PL and thought it was tasteless. I understand that they have an insane reputation for their "cuts" and all, but in the end I want flavor - and all's I got was a bland slab of meat and robbed. Also tried the sundae and it was NOTHING. The service was absolutely weird.

                    3. g
                      gfood Apr 3, 2009 12:53 PM

                      Worlds greatest hamburgers.

                      I love Lugers steak, but I can't argue when folks say they are overrated.

                      But, their burgers, if anything, are UNDERRATED, and are truly sublime, in my humble opininon.

                      Did you at least enjoy the chocolate coins at the end of the meal?

                      1. f
                        foodnwine Apr 3, 2009 01:49 PM

                        I have to agree with the OP.I've only been to Lugar's a couple of times so I'm no expert but I think it's very overrated.The Porterhouse is excellent.But there are so many good steak houses in Manhattan that for me it's not worth the trip.I like MarkJoseph,which also has excellent bacon and Old School spots like Post House and Sparks.Newer places like Del Frisco's,Primehouse and Wolfgangs.They all have good steak,but also a more comfortable atmosphere,better service and side dishes.I just don't get the Lugar's mystique.As far as Keen's,I think their steak is just ok.I love the bar,particularly during the winter.Keen's has a unique atmosphere and is a fun place to go for the history but there are better places from a steak standpoint.

                        1. f
                          Fleur Apr 3, 2009 08:24 PM

                          Are we talking about the same Peter Luger I have been having dinner about 8 tines a year for my entire life? Their steak has always been the best in America, and their sides and desserts excellent.

                          Sorry yoiu didn't enjoy Peter Luger. Every restaurant can have an off-day. Did you send your steak back, and try to talk to the Captain? We have alkways found they are most accomodating, and take great pride in the restaurant, and especially in their steak....not to mention the bacon.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Fleur
                            f
                            fozzie77 Apr 4, 2009 01:52 PM

                            Hi Fleur. Im new to the site but not new to being a foodie :). I respect your responses on this particular post & researched some of your other replies & you sound like someone from which I can get reliable responses & opinions. I have worked in downtown Brooklyn for over 10 years so we share some of the same dining experiences. I posted a question below about Peter Lugers & didnt get a reply yet so i was hoping you could read it & give me some feedback. Who is this Captain you speak of? Could I really have sent the steak back & asked them for another with proper char & crusting?
                            PS-I hope you didnt decide on Eamons for St Paddys. Great place to drink, but I had 2 very subpar dining experiences there myself.

                            1. re: fozzie77
                              f
                              Fleur Apr 4, 2009 11:49 PM

                              Hi Fozzie. Thanks for the compliments. I have never considered myself a "foodie" nor a "high roller". Just a Brooklyn gal who enjoys dining, cooking, and reading and writing about gastronomie, especially French nd Italian..

                              I'm not the world's greatest Steak lover either, but I do enjoy a great steak from time to time. They may call him something different in different places, but the guy who is in charge of all the waiters is the Captain.

                              I would say to remember you are the customer. Tthe restaurant exists to serve you a wonderful meal. If there is any problem, I would have no problem in discussing it , sotto voce, of course, first with your waiter, and then, if no satisfaction, the Captain or Manager.

                              I love that initial crunch myself, and if was different from the usual, I would discuss it with the waiter, or have my DH do it..

                              We never did go to Eamon's for St Pats..We only drink a glass or two with dinner, so drinking places are not for us.

                              I have to admit we don't go to other steak Houses,. but my DH, a carnivore to the core, and a real steak lover, has had great Steak au Poivre and Steak Diane at Henry's End.

                              I hope this answered your questions.

                              1. re: Fleur
                                f
                                fozzie77 Apr 5, 2009 05:21 AM

                                Thanks Fleur. That was very helpful. Henrys End has been on my radar for a while now. Im particularly interested in the Wild Game menu they have each fall. Have you tried that? Another stupid question, what does DH mean? lol Sorry, like I said Im a rookie. Thanks

                          2. c
                            carfreeinla Apr 4, 2009 04:44 AM

                            I have been going to PL for about 40 years. My memories of it are amazing steak, great fries and abrupt waiters. My last visit was a few months ago and the experience was not as memorable.
                            I am attributing it to two things-
                            the waiters know how to work the room and get even better tips.
                            We have so many more options for truly great steak.
                            Overrated? No- but it is no longer a life changing experience- and frankly, I long for what some describe as a rude waiter- I don't like ingratiating waiters...

                            1. f
                              fozzie77 Apr 4, 2009 06:15 AM

                              Ive been going to Peter Lugers for a few years now. Im not a high roller so its usually a special occasion place but Ive been there enough times & to enough other top steakhouses (the Palm, Striphouse, Old Homestead, Mortons, Delmonicos, Primehouse, Embers, Charleys in Orlando, etc) to determine that they are my favorite steak anywhere. However recently, I went there & the steak did not have the signature char & crust on top that I have grown to love. The steak was definitely still buttery & aged to perfection but was brown on top(not the usual black) & lacked the initial crunch when you cut into it. Has anyone else experienced this? Are they doing anything differently? Any info would be greatly appreciated.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: fozzie77
                                b
                                Brklynbobby Apr 6, 2009 08:40 AM

                                My steak didn't have a char either. Perhaps that is why I disagree with all those PL lovers. I probably would've love it if it was charred.

                                1. re: Brklynbobby
                                  f
                                  fozzie77 Apr 7, 2009 07:13 AM

                                  Thats true. This was the first time that it didnt have a char on mine. When it does it is by far the best steak Ive ever had. Fleur suggested that I try to talk to the waiter or Captain & I think I will do that next time.

                              2. w
                                wsbroker Apr 4, 2009 06:29 AM

                                I am not a fan of Peter Lugers either, thus I believe the one in Great Neck is better than the one in Brooklyn, when I want a good steak I go to ``BLT`` and order filet mignon in an upbeat enviroment with corteous waiters that give you good service not matter what nationality you are.

                                1. NYJewboy Apr 4, 2009 08:20 AM

                                  Yes, you had a bad meal. OK. It happens sometimes at PL's.

                                  However those of us who have been going there for over 30 years know that despite the ups and downs it is the best steak in the business, surly waitstaff not withstanding.

                                  1. a
                                    amandam673 Apr 4, 2009 05:12 PM

                                    Peter Luger's is one my favorites. Sometimes the waiters are gruff at the start, but I find that once I order my steak medium rare they warm up a LOT. I don't think they have much patience for anyone who'd ruin their steaks by overcooking them.

                                    One thing that's different about a Luger steak is that it really tastes of *meat*. For flavor, you've gotta use their tomato-based steak sauce.

                                    9 Replies
                                    1. re: amandam673
                                      EricMM Apr 4, 2009 06:06 PM

                                      I've only been to PL once....the steak was fantastic...among the best I have ever had...and I'm not even a fan of porterhouse. The service was fine...not at all what I had been led to expect. Other than that, no great shakes. I didn't like the sides or desserts (I was with my family, most of whom won't eat pork, so I didn't get to try the bacon..) Drinks were unimpressive, especially for a steakhouse. Basically, my conclusion was that if you go to PL, you go for one thing only.....the steak. Since I like more in my restaurant experience than just the main dish, I prefer other places...my favorite is the Old Homestead...and I'll agree that Keen's, while a fun place, is over-rated.....but if all you care about is the steak, than PL will be about as good as it gets.

                                      1. re: amandam673
                                        d
                                        dietndesire Apr 4, 2009 07:36 PM

                                        Are you joking? Using the sauce on the steak is amateur hour and practically blasphemous. Might as well order it well done, too.
                                        Then again, so are Zagat ratings, Food Network and menus at P Luger but this is what it has come to.

                                        1. re: amandam673
                                          f
                                          Fleur Apr 4, 2009 11:51 PM

                                          To Amandam, I must say I like my steak well done. They always oblige at Peter Luger. I have never gotten a smirk or dirty look there, and I have been going there with my parents since I was a teenager .

                                          The Steak Sauce is meant for the Tomato Salad, and I love it. But NEVER put it on Steak.

                                          1. re: Fleur
                                            d
                                            donovt Apr 5, 2009 06:18 AM

                                            I have gone to Luger's once or twice a year for the past 10 years or so. Yes, I have had an occasional meal that wasn't as good as what I have come to expect. However, even the times that were below par were still very good, just not the best. If the first time I went had been one of those times I would probably agree with the naysayers and call it over-rated. I have never heard of a restaurant that was so fiercely defended by it's loyal customers (myself included). There is no way that can be because of "hype". People wouldn't keep going back because of "Hype".

                                            Regarding the waiters, I have never had a bad experience, I've never had to wait for a drink and have found them to be efficient. I'm not going there to chat with the waiters. They say hello, take your order and leave. That's their job.

                                            1. re: donovt
                                              d
                                              dietndesire Apr 5, 2009 07:26 AM

                                              That is almost exactly how I would respond except for one medium-size point. People do keep going back to places that are not great and/or no longer great.

                                              The # of times we have been, the slight inconsistency and the possibility that it could be deemed overrated based on a meal, yes.
                                              Terrible? Not sure about that, especially since I do not see anywhere else that is exactly capable of blowing it out of the water day in and day out.

                                              I have had one steak in particular that was def not up to the standard but that was not even more recently though the last time I was there the burger(I dig it)was way below expectation I must admit. I am a fan of P Luger but also a realist about it. Not perfect every time but the consistency is high enough for me for it to maintain its ranking in my set.

                                              As for waiters, I can think of one, maybe two guys who are a bit of that stereotypical Luger "gruff" type.
                                              Overall, that is nonsense, they are perfectly fine unless you are one of these people who needs your hand held and your bum wiped for you.
                                              Though I am down with people like their waiters. As long as you are not a real dbag and you do your job as it should be done, that is all I require.
                                              Expectation changes depending on the venue. Would their service be proper in a 3 star? No but so what. Also, I would agree that they do not deserve the same huge tip that some might leave on that bill if it is somewhere with more service features. Depending on what type of tipper you are to begin with.

                                              AT THE STATE, nice post, also agreed. I am not even arguing to say it is THE BEST but when you see some of the choices people put over it, laughable to say the least. Not your fave, fine, but be somewhat plausible.

                                              1. re: dietndesire
                                                d
                                                david sprague Apr 5, 2009 07:54 AM

                                                extremely well put, d n d

                                                we've had disagreements out here, but you've captured my feeling about the luger experience to the letter. thanks.

                                                1. re: dietndesire
                                                  d
                                                  donovt Apr 5, 2009 08:06 AM

                                                  I guess you're right. Personally, I wouldn't keep going back anywhere because of hype if I didn't consistently enjoy the food. But I'm sure plenty of people would.

                                                  1. re: donovt
                                                    d
                                                    dietndesire Apr 5, 2009 10:33 AM

                                                    Was not implying you do, at all.
                                                    I certainly do not and do not care about rep or the past. Though if somewhere has been great for a long while, I will give them one poor performance. My point was there are different cases, some places were great, have hype then quality falls off but their business does not.
                                                    Other places maintain the standard.

                                                    1. re: dietndesire
                                                      d
                                                      donovt Apr 5, 2009 12:58 PM

                                                      I agree with you 100%. Sorry if it came out differently than intended!!

                                          2. a
                                            ajs42548 Apr 5, 2009 03:46 PM

                                            I've been to the Great Neck location and while the steak is good, it is definitely overrated. I think it's a case of the Emperor's New Clothes syndrome.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: ajs42548
                                              d
                                              david sprague Apr 5, 2009 04:42 PM

                                              well, the syndrome has lasted for the better part of a century....so somehow i think it's more than smoke and mirrors, judging by the thousands of hipster huts that've gone under since i've lived here.

                                            2. p
                                              paul_bklyn Apr 7, 2009 08:31 AM

                                              I went to Peter Luger's once many years ago; my steak was awful--it was so tough I could barely chew my way through it, and though I love crusty meat, this crust had been through a four-alarm fire, just hard and bitter. I liked the pecan pie, but never went back. I've always assumed that I just got a bad break-- Luger's wouldn't have lasted one year if my experience had been typical, but I haven't been tempted to try again, at that price. Still, my real lesson ought to have been that you can't necessarily tell from one visit.

                                              1. janethepain Apr 7, 2009 09:11 AM

                                                I went for the first time last August and was also completely underwhelmed. We ordered according to popular instruction - three of us got the porterhouse medium rare. I had wanted to order it rare, and really should have - what came out was medium to medium-well. That just killed it. Personally, I couldn't really tell it was a great aged steak, and the fact that it was overdone at such a highly-esteemed steakhouse was inexcusable. We had a bunch of sides too, including an overpriced salad with big tomato slices and onions. Yes, the creamed spinach was pretty good. But from what I had, PL is nothing I'd go rushing back for. I was disappointed, I really wanted to love the place.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: janethepain
                                                  baldwinwood Apr 7, 2009 09:19 AM

                                                  Next time you go to a restaurant and order a steak med-rare and it comes out med-well, send it back... You're paying good money for that steak and it should be cooked how you like it.

                                                  1. re: baldwinwood
                                                    b
                                                    BigV Apr 11, 2009 08:45 PM

                                                    Peter Luger is generally my favorite restaurant but I will say my last trip there was disappointing. I went to the Brooklyn one (hadn't been there in a while) and ate part of a steak for two medium. Uneven cooking (ranged from rare to med well) and the meat was way too fatty. I wonder if something's going on in Brooklyn- I've never had a bad meal in Great Neck to this point. In any case, the 'nothing but hype' proclamation is a bit presumptuous given one visit- that's like going to a baseball game and watching a future hall of famer live for the first time go 0-4 and calling him overrated. But I felt almost apologetic to the folks I went with who had never been before, so I can see how someone would react that way. For the price you are paying, the steak had better be good.

                                                2. chinatownmike May 2, 2009 07:32 AM

                                                  PL has become a sad tourist trap, a cliche of of its former greatness and the waiters are a greedy bunch of slobs.

                                                  Nobody here mentioned Bobby Van's on Broad Street!!!

                                                  My daughter and I love the 10oz Filet and French Fries for $25 at lunch.

                                                  Nice char on the outside, buttery on the inside and a bargain at that price.

                                                  7 Replies
                                                  1. re: chinatownmike
                                                    MOREKASHA May 2, 2009 10:34 AM

                                                    i haven't been in over 15 years. Back then I thought it was a lot of hype, good steak not great. Part of their pop culture "charm was the "bad area theory". If it's been there forever and been in a "no go" zone it must be good. i.e. Newark, Arthur Ave etc.... Anyway, I remember that their wine list sucked and for a "germanic" style place the beet list was god awful. Now, many years later most places will at least have Sam Adams or Sierra Nevada. So, what's the deal the alcohol @ PL these days? I still have my Dad's PL credit card, use it or loose it?

                                                    1. re: MOREKASHA
                                                      d
                                                      david sprague May 2, 2009 05:05 PM

                                                      i dunno....i first went to luger in 1985 and was enthralled. last went a couple months back and felt the same way. of a dozen (maybe 15) visits total, two or three were meh.

                                                      my gut tells me a restaurant doesn't last a century based on hype alone -- which leads me to believe emperor chang's new clothes will unravel long long long long before 2099.....

                                                      1. re: david sprague
                                                        p
                                                        pastoralia May 4, 2009 12:11 PM

                                                        The emperor wears no clothes! I agree. The steak doesn't live up to the hype. It's OK nothing great.

                                                        1. re: pastoralia
                                                          d
                                                          david sprague May 4, 2009 03:30 PM

                                                          okay, then.

                                                          what's great in the world of steak...in ny that is?

                                                          1. re: david sprague
                                                            p
                                                            pastoralia May 5, 2009 07:24 AM

                                                            I haven't found anything that compares to the steaks I grew up with in the Midwest.

                                                             
                                                            1. re: pastoralia
                                                              w
                                                              wew May 5, 2009 10:02 AM

                                                              What steak and/or beef offerings to be found here abouts do you like - even a little?

                                                              1. re: wew
                                                                p
                                                                pastoralia May 6, 2009 01:44 PM

                                                                BLT Steak and the Strip House. But when I really think about it...I rarely go to a steakhouse here. I might have steak on a menu but I don't ever go to a place known for steaks. Any suggestions for something that looks like my picture above (from The 5 O'Clock Club in Milwaukee, WI)? Thick, charred on the outside and juicy pink in the middle? Lugers steak seemed to thin and not charred enough for me.

                                                  2. g
                                                    Geo8rge May 5, 2009 09:13 PM

                                                    When you pay big $ for a porter house it better be unseasoned, you are paying for the meat not the seasoning. Cheap cuts of meat highly seasoned, prepared in a time consuming manner is called BBQ. I am not a Peter Luger fan, but I would not criticize them for not seasoning a porter house. I also agree that the sides are not that good, but the spinach is as good as spinach gets in this town.

                                                    1. f
                                                      Fleur May 5, 2009 11:30 PM

                                                      PETER LUGER has been a family owned, family run restaurant receiving rave reviews for a hundred years. PL has consistently been voted "best steakhouse in NY", "best steakhouse in the US", and "best steak in the world.".

                                                      I have been going to PETER LUGER every couple of months since I was a child. My grandparents loved it, as did my parents, and now the next generation loves it, including my totally carnivorous DH.

                                                      Of course, restaurants, and dishes are all, well, a matter of taste. But could all these people over all these decades be wrong?

                                                      3 Replies
                                                      1. re: Fleur
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                                                        addictedtolunch May 6, 2009 03:00 AM

                                                        Agree. The above statement as to mass, sustained approval for what Luger's provides only reflects reality and is not subject to logical attack. It could be a matter of tastes differing. Or it could be something else-I notice a lot of posters demean Lugers but then offer no alternatives as to what steakhouse they prefer. Could it be--LDS?? (Luger Derangement Syndrome= defined in the journals as the need to attack whoever/whatever rules in the steak world).

                                                        1. re: addictedtolunch
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                                                          Fleur May 6, 2009 07:03 PM

                                                          Thank you Dr. addictedtolunch. I agree with your astute diagnosis of LDS.(no offense to Mormons intended)

                                                          1. re: Fleur
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                                                            captainspacefood May 10, 2009 09:15 PM

                                                            The ribeye they're serving at Momofuku Ssam in the city is pretty insane, up there with Luger's. But at $140 or whatever it is, I'll take 2 meals at Luger's anyday.

                                                      2. b
                                                        biga290 May 11, 2009 06:49 PM

                                                        new york is the city to go to for steak and there is no place better for the classic new york meal of caesar, bacon, porterhouse, potato of choice, creamed spinach, schlag, attitude and atmosphere. i have been to them all and there is no place better than peter luger in brooklyn. great neck food seems just as good but it lacks the attitude and atmosphere. i got the sense when i went to great neck for the first time last month that they opened that location in tudor style of all things as a reaction to the brooklyn dodgers moving to LA and haven't updated in over 50 years.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: biga290
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                                                          Bipster1 Mar 10, 2012 08:08 AM

                                                          Just went to PL last week and can NOT believe how terrible it was. What a waste of money!!!! How can a steakhouse screw up 3 out of 5 steaks ordered? The were RAW. Not to mention the fish was tasteless and dry. The potatoes were stale and flavorless. The onion rings greasy and bland. This place is all hype and a tourist trap. We heard so much about how rude the waiters are but worth going because the food is amazing. Well, our waiter "Bobby" couldn't have been nicer but unfortunately the food sucked! Don't bother going unless you like getting ripped off.

                                                          1. re: Bipster1
                                                            EricMM Mar 10, 2012 08:57 AM

                                                            There's no excuse for the steaks being bad. But the rest is to be expected.....I have found PL to be a steak, and steak only, place. But the waiters are fine and not at all like their reputation.

                                                        2. d
                                                          Daniel76 Mar 12, 2012 07:19 AM

                                                          We had dinner there last night, an early dinner there last night.. We arrived at 4:45 and were promptly seated. The space is the same as it has been since I have been going there.. I actually went a few months ago for a cheeseburger and ended up sitting in the same spot again.

                                                          Much has been said about the waiters and the room and the casualness of it all. To me, it's perfect in that aspect. People complain about the gruff waiters, I did not see that at all actually. The waiters were super friendly and very nice to Miss K when she ordered the "Holy Cow" huge ass chocolate Sunday. Perhaps it's such a touristy spot that people coming from out of town like to mix it up with the waiters. Who knows. We wanted food, they gave us food, when we wanted more drinks, they brought more drinks, when we wanted help with ordering, he gave us the answers we were looking for.

                                                          To me, Peter Luger was one of the only places that lived up to the hype. I would read people's reviews about it being average or bad and I wanted no part of hearing about it. And while I am still in love with the restaurant, it's history, and the ambiance, for steak alone, it has lost some of its luster. And I don't think it's because of anything Peter Luger has done. I just think that the products and techniques that are used at Luger is more common than before.

                                                          Dry aged steaks, big green eggs, infrared broilers, these are things that the at home cook now has access to. And while the steak at Luger is still delicious, it can be had elsewhere. Where once Peter Luger was the only game in town, I can go to my local butcher, buy a bag of charcoal, and produce the same results in my backyard. And by me., I mean anyone who has the inclination and the time. Or I can go to a number of other steakhouses which provide similar steaks with much better sides.

                                                          Even the bacon, I remember getting the bacon here years and years ago.. No one was serving thick slices of bacon like that. Now, it's almost pedestrian.

                                                          The sides at Luger are pretty average. The German Fries, the Shoe String Onions Rings, the Creamed Spinach. All can be had much better somewhere else. The onion rings were greasy, the potatoes dry, the creamed spinach, one note.

                                                          The only part of a Peter Luger Steak Dinner that can not be replicated is the wonderful atmosphere, the history, the excitement of the place.. Everyone is happy to be there and it's a special thing.

                                                          If I were to recommend a reason to go there in order to seek out exceptional food, it is their burger. It's among my favorites in the city. It's a must try for burger fans. It's truly a beautiful thing.

                                                          We had a truly wonderful time, the steak was delicious. The price, the month long wait, the lack of a decent wine list, and the average sides, were the drawbacks.

                                                          -----
                                                          Peter Luger Steak House
                                                          178 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11211

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: Daniel76
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                                                            addictedtolunch Mar 12, 2012 05:12 PM

                                                            You say the steak can be replicated elsewhere, which is true on a "good" night most anywhere, but having been to many of the others numerous times I find Lugers to be a more consistent performer. That really matters when you are gambling your $100 per person and building expectations for a special night. (But I agree about the sides-not life altering, just good).

                                                            1. re: addictedtolunch
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                                                              Daniel76 Mar 12, 2012 06:10 PM

                                                              I am not thinking anywhere.. i am sorry, if I that is how it came across.. I still find it to be a top tier steak, i am just saying, its no longer in a league of it's own.

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