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Great steak in LA - but not quite Cut, etc

djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 07:16 AM

Brother's in town from Ohio, wants to use the expense account on a good steak for us, but can't do CUT, or anything that high end? Carlitos Gardel on Melrose sounds interesting, but I'd appreciate the suggestions.


Carlitos Gardel
7963 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90046

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  1. monku RE: djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 07:21 AM

    It's Morton's downtown when my brother comes from Ohio with his expense account.

    8 Replies
    1. re: monku
      monku RE: monku Jan 22, 2011 07:28 AM

      He also likes Fogo de Chao in Beverly Hills

      1. re: monku
        wienermobile RE: monku Jan 22, 2011 08:34 AM

        Yes Fogo de Chao is a great choice, and if he is here during Dine LA week an all you can eat great steak (their Filet Mignon will melt in your mouth) and a dozen other meats plus the best salad bar in LA is only $44 for dinner (and only $28 for lunch).

        Fogo De Chao
        133 N La Cienega Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

        1. re: wienermobile
          monku RE: wienermobile Feb 4, 2011 08:39 AM

          Went to Fogo De Chao last night for the Dine LA $44 special(regular price is $56.50). It also included dessert. They said the expected 800 people last night and 1,000 tonight. A bit optimistic on their projection, place was only half full when we left at 7:00.

          Fogo De Chao
          133 N La Cienega Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

          1. re: monku
            ipsedixit RE: monku Feb 4, 2011 08:54 AM

            do you have any idea on the grade of beef used at FdC? Prime? Choice? Select?

            1. re: ipsedixit
              monku RE: ipsedixit Feb 4, 2011 09:25 AM

              Most likely choice. The filet was melt in your mouth tender. I preferred their Picana (house specialty) which I believe is the top cap of the rib eye. I was humbled and couldn't put away half the meat I thought I could...probably no mre than a pound.
              But, $44 was a very good deal.

        2. re: monku
          paprkutr RE: monku Jan 22, 2011 09:00 AM

          Like Fogo de Chao, especially their lamb chops. As Monku said they have all sorts of meat and a big salad bar. Just know that if he wants traditional sides, baked potatoe, etc. this is not the place.

          If he's in town now, go tomorrow night to Flemings, they have a special for $29.99 on Sunday nights in January for a 12 oz prime rib dinner complete. Check it out.

          1. re: monku
            chezwhitey RE: monku Jan 22, 2011 10:53 AM

            Fogo de chao is great for stuffing yourselves. At the same time, this branch doesn't seem to be good as the one in Dallas. Not sure if this has changed in the last year.

            1. re: chezwhitey
              ipsedixit RE: chezwhitey Jan 22, 2011 10:57 AM

              The best FdC I've been to has probably been the one in Miami. Never been to the one in Dallas, however.

        3. DrBruin RE: djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 08:54 AM

          I think you need to specify just how much you can spend per person without getting your brother in trouble. You'd probably need to call around to get some prices.

          I like Monku's suggestions of Fogo (not a traditional steak but this place is a carnivore's paradise)... and I'll throw in a few other suggestions

          1.Ruth's Chris (several locations)... I love the piping hot plates the steaks are served on.....and ... and the fact they top their steaks with butter. It's a very good steak house chain that's not as expensive as CUT.
          2. Arroyo Chophouse in Pasadena - I enjoyed their NY strip especially the last time I was there.
          3. Mastro's in Beverly Hills (but there are a couple of locations) - Probably too expensive if CUT is out of the running. Great bone-in filet.
          4. However, if budget is really an issue... you can go to the Porterhouse Bistro and get their pre fixe menu and for 90 bucks, you get two drinks (cocktails or wine or soda), soup or salad, share a 24 hour porterhouse steak, one side, and a dessert.... The steak is pretty good but not great.

          If you want absolute premium steak in LA, you're going to pay premium prices...

          Porterhouse Bistro
          8635 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90211

          1. ipsedixit RE: djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 09:28 AM

            Carlitos Gardel is great; I was just there and had a wonderful skirt steak, which I posted about here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/761092

            Might also consider Nick and Stef's and Jar.

            1. n
              New Trial RE: djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 09:44 AM

              Gardel is very good. I also love the steaks at Jar.

              Jar Restaurant
              8225 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048

              1. d
                djmedi4 RE: djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 12:43 PM

                Think we're going with Ruth Chris. Heard nothing but great things about it. You guys on this board rock - greatly appreciated.

                8 Replies
                1. re: djmedi4
                  DrBruin RE: djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 08:18 PM

                  You're welcome...

                  Ordering advice for Ruth's Chris...
                  Salads - I like the steak house (just know that there is no steak is on it) or the wedge.
                  Steaks - Med rare (but you should order it however you like them) but I ask for extra butter.
                  Potatoes - I've had the au gratin, lyonaiise and mashed. All delicious. I have enjoyed the shoestring fries over the classic but have come to the conclusion to limit eating fries to burger joints and get something else at steak houses.
                  Veggies - I've enjoyed all the brocolli and spinach sides.
                  Dessert - Carmelized Banana Cream Pie! Yummmmm.

                  1. re: djmedi4
                    TailbackU RE: djmedi4 Jan 22, 2011 09:47 PM

                    Been to Ruth Chris once because we had some gift cards. I thought it was plain horrible and would not spend a dime there again. Their steaks are all drenched in butter and the flavors of their steaks couldn't hold a candle to Mastros, while the prices are very similar. I can't imagine how anyone likes that place. Just my $0.02.

                    Mastros Restaurant
                    2087 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

                    1. re: TailbackU
                      DrBruin RE: TailbackU Jan 22, 2011 11:08 PM

                      I guess this is more of a "do you like butter or don't you" argument. By the way, you can ask for your steak at Ruth's without butter and it turns out just fine. I find the filets at Ruth's can pretty much be cut with a butter knife and the flavor of the beef... to be... (y)ummmm....beefy.

                      Overall, I love Mastro's, don't get me wrong... but for the price they charge, this restaurant isn't perfect.... while I agree Mastro's meat is tasty, I've had to send a steak back once due to what I felt to be excessive gristle (something I haven't had to do yet at Ruth's). One visit, I ordered a Maine lobster at Mastro's and it came out extremely overcooked (I would've sent it back but I didn't want to insult the person who was paying for the meal AND I needed something rubbery to patch a hole in my bike tire ANDI didn't want another poor lobster soul killed twice..). Lastly, I also think I'm not the only one here who finds the acoustics at Mastro's (I've only been to the Beverly Hills location) to be less than agreeable.

                      Just my 2 cents. ;) (Basically, that's all I have left after eating at all these lovely steak houses.)

                      Mastros Restaurant
                      2087 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

                    2. re: djmedi4
                      monku RE: djmedi4 Jan 23, 2011 04:37 PM

                      Since you've decided on Ruth's Chris and you're on an expense account, don't get suckered into the $39.95 Special Menu. I had it about a year ago and the filet was nothing to write home about. Go with the Cowboy rib eye or NY steak.
                      Without butter is my preference.


                      1. re: djmedi4
                        OC Mutt RE: djmedi4 Jan 27, 2011 10:12 AM

                        Ruth's Chris is soup to nuts my favorite steak house. It's been excellent at every location I've ever been (including Park City Utah of all places). Moreover, having been to Cut, I can say it's excellent as well (though I found the desserts to be sorely lacking), but the difference between Cut and Ruth's Chris isn't the same as the price chasm between the two restaurants - although to be fair, if you don't order Kobe or Wagyu beef at Cut, it isn't much more expensive than RC. As for Mortons, or the Palm, don't bother. They're mediocre yet at the same price as Ruth's Chris (which isn't cheap by any stretch of the imagination).

                        1. re: OC Mutt
                          Servorg RE: OC Mutt Jan 27, 2011 10:18 AM

                          I've had some excellent steaks at R'sC, but I have had some duds too. It just seems like I never knew which I was going to get. I almost always order a rib eye, medium rare. Morton's has been the equal of R'sC for me, but with more consistency in terms of meat quality.

                          We have been to the Beverly Hills locations for both Ruth's Chris and Mortons, plus out of town (hence off topic) locations for each of them as well.

                          1. re: Servorg
                            boogiebaby RE: Servorg Jan 27, 2011 11:08 AM

                            That's my usual order as well. We normally go to the Woodland hills location and it's been pretty consistent. RC also has my all time favorite salad (The Ruth's Chopped Salad) so that usually aways me to go there.

                            We've been to Mastro's, Mortons, etc as well and they are all good, but they don't have my Ruth's Chopped Salad. LOL

                            1. re: Servorg
                              foufou RE: Servorg Feb 4, 2011 09:19 AM

                              my experience with Ruth Chris is similar to yours, Servorg...I have had excellent steaks at the Beverly Hills location but had a spectacular dud at the Pasadena location (the only steak that I have had that was worst was at J.J.'s steakhouse in Pasadena).......I prefer Mastro's for steak and sides. I have been to Arroyo Chop, Pacific Dining Car, and Taylor's and found them unremarkable.

                              Pacific Dining Car
                              1310 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

                              Mastros Restaurant
                              2087 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

                        2. f
                          foodiemahoodie RE: djmedi4 Jan 23, 2011 12:07 AM

                          Angelini Osteria serves a big fat (for 2) Porterhouse "Florentine" style - (usually rosemary, olive oil, char-grilled_ from Harvey Guss - the rockstar of L.A. Butchers . The quality of beef is just better than what you get at Ruth's Chris, Morton's or Mastro (or Wolfgangs, etc.) Plus you get a whole menu of great Italian food rather than the usual, relatively standard steakhouse fare.

                          The New York steak (Dabney Coleman) at Dan Tana's is also great. The lamb chops (double cut rack of lamb) are also excellent. Pretty much everything else at Tana's is pretty boring. But the ambience in that tiny joint is better than three trendy joints put together.

                          Angelini Osteria
                          7313 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036

                          Dan Tana's Restaurant
                          9071 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90069

                          Mastros Restaurant
                          2087 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: foodiemahoodie
                            Briggs RE: foodiemahoodie Jan 23, 2011 01:18 AM

                            "Pretty much everything else at Tana's is pretty boring. But the ambience in that tiny joint is better than three trendy joints put together."

                            Yeah, into one bigger trendy joint. Perhaps I'm not being fair since it's been many years since I've tried Dan Tana's. Or actually tried to get in. Don't know if it's still a hot ticket, but it certainly had its days of behaving like one. Also add me to the underwhelmed column about Ruth's Chris.

                            And to the OP - you certainly have the right to go anywhere, but why choose a franchise, and one that's available to your brother in Ohio? As much as I like Morton's and Fogo de Chao, the same also holds true, although Fogo is a little less ubiquitous.

                            Dan Tana's Restaurant
                            9071 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90069

                            1. re: foodiemahoodie
                              DrBruin RE: foodiemahoodie Jan 23, 2011 07:13 AM

                              How much did the Fiorentina set you back? There isn't a price on the online menu.

                            2. l
                              la tache burger RE: djmedi4 Jan 23, 2011 01:17 AM

                              Lucques. Steak for 2. Served with mashed potatoes. Best best. Had it a couple of months ago, sublime as ever.

                              8474 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90069

                              1. m
                                mc michael RE: djmedi4 Jan 23, 2011 07:32 AM

                                I've eaten lots of so-so steak in this town. I don't know if this thread is going to become the Tao of Steak or not. I certainly haven't eaten everywhere but I do think Cut is a cut above most. I find Morton's and Mastro's about equal. Flemings maybe a shade below them. Ruth's Chris below that. They do have good prix fixe menus. But I think for overall experience, I like Lawry's better than Ruth's. Funny, no one has mentioned The Palm and they used to be known for their steaks. Haven't had one in years. Taylor's would be somewhere down the food chain.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: mc michael
                                  cant talk...eating RE: mc michael Jan 23, 2011 01:54 PM

                                  Had a steak-heavy dinner w/ a group of guys at The Palm within the past year or two - nothing memorable, but nothing bad at all. Great service. It reminded me of Houston's or Ruth's Chris but less production than the latter. Never been to the high-end places mentioned above (Cut, Morton's), so can't say if the meat's that much better. Palm's Atmosphere definitely not a "scene", sort of upscale-chain, any-city-U.S.A., if that appeals. I'd go back. You could do a lot worse.

                                2. wutzizname RE: djmedi4 Jan 23, 2011 08:34 AM

                                  I'm another vote for Jar.

                                  Ruth's Chris is what it is. Not terrible. But you can find one in most major American cities. And ours is about the plainest, most boring little one in the chain.

                                  When visiting another city, why go to a national chain when there are so many better L.A. originals?

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: wutzizname
                                    maudies5 RE: wutzizname Jan 23, 2011 03:34 PM

                                    Toscana does a great steak. It is grilled and then finished off in the wood burning oven. This is the way Capo prepares its great steak. Toscana's is just as good as the Capo steak but less money. Toscana's steak is a bone-in NY and served with the most delicious spinach and roast potatoes. One is definitely enough for two. So-o mouth-wateringly delicious!

                                  2. johnnyshungry RE: djmedi4 Jan 24, 2011 03:52 PM

                                    If he's from out of town Taylors where Frank Sinatra used to have his steak or try Musso n' Franks.
                                    Fine steaks and old school vibe.
                                    Take my brother in-law he loves how Taylors is so old school.
                                    Granted not CUT And certainly not a chain like Mortons.
                                    my 2 cents.

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: johnnyshungry
                                      monku RE: johnnyshungry Jan 24, 2011 04:31 PM

                                      Taylors is fine if you aren't expecting USDA Prime steaks.

                                      1. re: monku
                                        ipsedixit RE: monku Jan 24, 2011 05:27 PM

                                        ... or if you're punch drunk from a night of drinking in one of the many nearby Korean pubs.

                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                          monku RE: ipsedixit Jan 24, 2011 05:36 PM

                                          On their menu they feature a 17 oz. "Premium" New York Steak Bone in....I don't know what grade "Premium" is.

                                          1. re: monku
                                            racerxlilbro RE: monku Jan 25, 2011 06:30 AM

                                            I thoroghly enjoyed STK, though it was very expensive. Jar is always good. Lawry's is a must for Prime Rib, too. Honorable mentions go to the Pacific Dining Car, and of course The Palm.

                                            Pacific Dining Car
                                            1310 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

                                            1. re: racerxlilbro
                                              monku RE: racerxlilbro Jan 25, 2011 08:03 AM

                                              Only been to The Palm in West Hollywood, but us they have excellent steaks and lobsters.

                                    2. johnnyshungry RE: djmedi4 Jan 25, 2011 10:33 AM

                                      great for visitors and meat.
                                      or possibly Josies

                                      1. h
                                        HastaLaPasta RE: djmedi4 Jan 26, 2011 01:09 PM

                                        It might still be too expensive, but I've had some great meals at BLT Steak in West Hollywood - though I think it will be a bit less $ than Cut.

                                        1. p
                                          pnutbuddah RE: djmedi4 Jan 26, 2011 11:16 PM

                                          I don't understand why Jar and Boa (Santa Monica location) don't get more respect from Hounds. Both are so consistently superior to Mastro's, the Dining Car and Ruth's Cris in quality, sides, and ambience. Perhaps the service is flashier at Mastro's but I've found it pretty inconsistent for us regular folk.

                                          I love Gardel's Lucques and Fogo, but for a steak house, I'll take Jar or Boa hands down. Currently Boa has a root vegetable gratin, that is SO killer...with the bone-in ribeye it's great!

                                          8474 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90069

                                          Mastros Restaurant
                                          2087 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA 91362

                                          1. DrBruin RE: djmedi4 Feb 4, 2011 08:50 AM

                                            hey djmedi4, where'd you end up going and what were your thoughts?

                                            1. m
                                              Mr Grub RE: djmedi4 Feb 5, 2011 08:03 AM

                                              For years the ol’ Gruboni has extolled the wonderfulity of Pane e Vino’s bistecca Fiorentina. Prompted by this thread, the fetching Signora Gruboni & I dined at PeV the other nite after a too-long absence. In past, only Mr G has indulged in the beefy brilliance. This time, la signora & I shared the 32-oz bone-in ribeye Fiorentina with the usual result – the best steak in the city. Really.

                                              Rubbed w a few simple herbs (thyme, rosemary?) & oil, cooked perfectly to our taste & served w/o ceremony tableside, it’s a steak lover’s dream come true. Accompanied by bright, fresh steamed spinach w garlic & by sliced potatoes & onions, this would be a bargain at $150; at $72, it’s a freakin’ steal.

                                              Pane e Vino
                                              8265 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: Mr Grub
                                                ZoeZ RE: Mr Grub Feb 5, 2011 12:04 PM

                                                Capital Grille served a wonderful steak au poivre with courvoisier cream sauce to me which I split with dinner companion - Mme Zoe had the tenderloin which she split also. My steak was absolutely outstanding and worth another visit. (both steaks were $45 each sans sides).

                                                Will follow the Grubs suggestion at P e V for the bistecca Fiorentina on our next visit.

                                                The Capital Grille
                                                8614 Beverly Blvd Suite 157, Los Angeles, CA 90048

                                              2. a
                                                AMC1210 RE: djmedi4 Feb 8, 2011 06:50 PM

                                                Took my wife to Cut for her Birthday, she's a big steak fan. Her favorite is Peter Lugar"s, we go twice a year. We always order the Porterhouse for 2. Second choice is R C in Irvine. Cut Ambiance-Great
                                                Porterhouse for 2-Average

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: AMC1210
                                                  New Trial RE: AMC1210 Feb 8, 2011 11:42 PM

                                                  You and your wife might enjoy the Porterhouse at the Beverly Hill's branch of Wolfgang's Steakhouse--the closest thing we have to Peter Luger out here (Wolfgang Zweiner used to work for Peter Luger).

                                                  1. re: New Trial
                                                    AMC1210 RE: New Trial Feb 9, 2011 08:57 PM

                                                    Thanks for the rec. We will try it out, I know Wolfgang has restaurant in Manhattan, but never went.

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