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Beef Tartare Boston?

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cscott4313 Apr 13, 2009 05:34 PM

Last weekend my girlfriend and I tried Sorellina for dinner and had a wonderful rendition of sirloin tartare. With wonderfully tender beef, onion marmellata and black truffle vinaigrette, the dish was smooth and perfectly light. I haven't had tartare in quite some time and was wondering whether anyone has any suggestions for where else I might go to try steak tartare. Price is not an issue. Location should be within the general Boston area. Thanks much.

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  1. ScubaSteve RE: cscott4313 Apr 13, 2009 05:38 PM

    i do like the tartare at Eastern Standard, Brasserie Jo and ABe & Louie's. i also remember being told i really enjoyed the one at Grill 23 too.

    1. m
      macadamianut RE: cscott4313 Apr 13, 2009 05:39 PM

      It might be hard to beat Sorellina. Thay have wonderful food expertly prepared. I am sure that there are probably many nice restaurants that serve Steak Tartare but the way in which you describe your dish and the lasting impression it made will make it hard to beat.

      4 Replies
      1. re: macadamianut
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        cscott4313 RE: macadamianut Apr 13, 2009 08:32 PM

        Sorellina is a great restaurant for its incredible ambiance, wait staff and the majority of its dishes, though it is not without a few shortcomings. Nothing that I ordered was worse than good, but for the price, I certainly expected the filet to melt in my mouth (The foursome at the table next to us had their steaks returned to the kitchen for different dishes….Maybe it was just an off night). Otherwise, the Caesar was refreshing (though I have had better, and am still searching for a restaurant that prepares its Caesars tableside – egg cracking and all), the tartare was simply excellent, my girlfriend's chicken was perfectly cooked and seasoned (perhaps the best, or second best that I've had), and the mocha-meringue, caramel syrup semi freddo was enjoyable (not as overly impressive flavor-wise as its title seems to promise, but light on the palate and satisfying). Despite my criticisms, I will certainly return. The restaurant was equal parts destination, wine selection and kitchen, and impressive in all regards. Live jazz against the glimmering Boston skyline from the top of the Prudential proved a perfect ending to the evening, leaving the sweetheart and me soft-eyed and smiling.

        1. re: cscott4313
          Jolyon Helterman RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 03:08 AM

          Love steak tartare.

          My favorites currently are at Bina Osteria (a more toothsome crudo) and KO Prime.

          Another interesting variation on raw beef is kitfo (Ethiopian steak tartare), and in Boston I prefer the one at Addis Red Sea. The chopped lean beef is tossed with hot-chile-and-cardamom-infused butter, and lots of it. Delicious.

          1. re: Jolyon Helterman
            m
            macadamianut RE: Jolyon Helterman Apr 14, 2009 05:08 AM

            That sounds good!!

            1. re: Jolyon Helterman
              hotoynoodle RE: Jolyon Helterman Apr 14, 2009 06:10 PM

              agreed about bina. beef tartare isn't something i ever order, but a friend got it and i was hooked. they use all-natural grass fed beef. the texture is amazing and the flavor is luscious yet so clean. killah dish.

        2. n
          newyorker1 RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 05:09 AM

          I loved the steak tartare at The Capital Grille (this was a couple years ago at the Newbury St. location) -- perfectly seasoned. I'll need to check out Sorellina's version soon!

          1 Reply
          1. re: newyorker1
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            cscott4313 RE: newyorker1 Apr 14, 2009 10:26 AM

            The sirloin tartare at Sorellina was better than excellent, but I cannot rave about the main course steak. Although I have heard positive things about their steak, my filet was not melt-in-your-mouth quality: something that I expected for $43 and from such a revered restaurant. Then again, it could have been an off-night for the steak. The foursome seated next to us had their steaks sent back to the kitchen and exchanged for different dishes. While steak is my own forte (and I may, therefore, be resigned to considering the garlicky, succulent, medium rare steaks as the best), the texture of the filet was unimpressive for the price. I prefer a steak that feels tender in my mouth, like the sensation I get from lightly biting the inside of my cheek, and this steak could not be classified as such. Still, the restaurant was marvelous overall, and I will try the steak again to see if Sorellina can redeem itself.

          2. Alcachofa RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 06:33 AM

            The best:

            No. 9 Park
            Grill 23

            1. galangatron RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 06:48 AM

              try yuk hwe, the korean version of beef tartare. minced raw beef tossed with garlic, sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, thinly sliced korean pear, and a raw egg. topped with a handful of pine nuts. wu chon house in somerville does an exemplary version of this dish

              1. rlh RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 07:20 AM

                A surprise to me was how delicious the classic style steak tartare is at Drink - however, it's 3 very small bites for $10.

                1. Essex County RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 08:32 AM

                  I also like Brasserie Jo's version. The Butcher Shop has an awesome one too.

                  1. yumyum RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 09:49 AM

                    Anti-recommendation: the steak tartare at Eastern Standard has too much *stuff* in it -- capers, shallots, herbs etc. It does come served with a small side of fries, and who doesn't like an app with a side, but the actual steak itself is too fiddled with.

                    7 Replies
                    1. re: yumyum
                      barleywino RE: yumyum Apr 14, 2009 09:52 AM

                      not quite the same thing, but the beef carpaccio at Scampo is excellent

                      1. re: barleywino
                        c
                        cscott4313 RE: barleywino Apr 14, 2009 10:30 AM

                        I love carpaccio, but I feel that it is a much lighter, almost palate-cleansing course next to tartare. Still, thanks for the recommendation.

                      2. re: yumyum
                        ScubaSteve RE: yumyum Apr 14, 2009 11:26 AM

                        i've encountered what you described with ESK's tartare. the last couple of times we ordered it we asked for a more Pure Beef rendition and they were happy to oblige, but then, the place was kinda dead.

                        1. re: ScubaSteve
                          yumyum RE: ScubaSteve Apr 14, 2009 11:28 AM

                          Oh scuba -- that's good to know. And believe me, I wouldn't kick ESK's version out of bed, I just like the more pure kind of raw beef and less mix and match.

                        2. re: yumyum
                          Alcachofa RE: yumyum Apr 14, 2009 04:02 PM

                          ES does change their tartare recipe sometimes. I remember ordering it pretty soon after it opened: OK. Then around a year ago: Great! Then a couple months ago: the "too much stuff" style.

                          1. re: Alcachofa
                            StriperGuy RE: Alcachofa Apr 14, 2009 04:10 PM

                            I had it about 3 weeks ago and I will admit it was just a bit over-seasoned.

                            1. re: Alcachofa
                              yumyum RE: Alcachofa Apr 15, 2009 06:40 AM

                              That's right. I had the year ago / simple and great version and the recent / Too much stuff version. I prefer the former.

                          2. heathermb RE: cscott4313 Apr 14, 2009 10:02 AM

                            My favorite is Eastern Standard (I like all the stuff in it :-) )
                            Second for me is Butcher Shop

                            Sorellina's version sounds delicious, I will have to check it out when I'm off the matzoh

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: heathermb
                              m
                              mwk RE: heathermb Apr 15, 2009 08:01 AM

                              I also will put a vote in for Kitfo at Addis Red Sea, which is delicious.

                              I recently had an excellent Steak Tartare at Pierrot Bistrot on Cambridge St. It had a great flavor with some green onions, worcestershire and I had to fight my dinner companion for bites of it.

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