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The Best Porterhouse Steaks in the City

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  • dlgc Aug 7, 2011 12:01 PM
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We are Miami Beach hounds that will be in NYC for Labor Day weekend and looking for the best porterhouse for two in the city. We have been to Lugers and would like to try somewhere else if it's as good. Thanks in advance for all your help.

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  1. Smith & Wollensky will fix you up with a nice, aged porterhouse for 2. 49th & 3rd. It's $96, a la carte. Their sides are good, and huge.

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    Smith & Wollensky
    797 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10022

    1 Reply
    1. re: Veggo

      We have given up on Smith and Wollensky as it has never been above mediocre.
      We like the Porterhouse @ Old Homestead.

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      Old Homestead
      56 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

      Smith & Wollensky
      797 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10022

    2. I love the porterhouse for two at Keens. Great atmosphere with a lot of history, too.

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      Keens
      72 West 36th St., New York, NY 10018

      4 Replies
      1. re: kathryn

        we made a reservation at Keens last week, but were not sure if it's as good as Luger.

        How is Wolfgangs? does it compare to Luger, and or Keens?

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        Wolfgang's
        4 Park Ave, New York, NY 10016

        1. re: dlgc

          Better than Keens, not quite as good as Luger.

          1. re: Sneakeater

            Was not happy with the Keens porterhouse. Thought Luger, Wolfgangs and Porterhouse in the TWC were all better.

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            Porter House New York
            10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

            1. re: Sneakeater

              Completely agree with Sneakeater's assessment. I'd also add that while it's known more for the bone-in ribeye, Strip House does a pretty decent porterhouse for two as well.

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              Strip House
              13 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

        2. We've been to Smith & Wolensky, albeit a long time ago. I wouldn't choose it because it is now a chain.

          Keens is our favorite NYC steakhouse. It is a New York institution having been in its 36th St. location since 1885. Thus, in addition to excellent food, including a superb porterhouse, there is the unmatchable charm of its Old New York ambiance -- walls filled with authentic American memorabilia, and row-upon-row of clay smoking pipes suspended from all the ceilings, plus pipes belonging to famous people dating as far back as the 19th century in display cases in the vestibule.

          Keens photos, including the porterhouse: http://www.flickr.com/photos/11863391...

          http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

          1. The porterhouse at posto is excellent

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            Del Posto
            85 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

            3 Replies
            1. re: princeofpork

              In case the OP is searching, its name is "Del Posto"

              I'm a big big big fan of Keen's in Manhattan; Luger when I don't mind schlepping to Williamsburg. If they were both equally convenient, I'd choose Keen's Porterhouse for Two.

              1. re: thegforceny

                Sometimes Craft has one which is very, very good.

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                Craft
                43 E. 19th St., New York, NY 10003

                1. re: nmprisons

                  +1 on Craft, I'd take it over Luger's.

            2. If you're looking purely for the best porterhouse besides Luger's, it is Wolfgang's. Keen's is a wonderful place, but the steaks are not first rate like Wolfgang's and Luger's.

              1 Reply
              1. re: gutsofsteel

                Correct.

              2. If you go to Wolfgang's, try to avoid the one on Park Avenue. It is so noisy that you can't have a conversation. Have found the one in Tribeca (on Greenwich) to have a tolerable sound level (and more space). The one on East 54th is probably similar, but have never been there. In any case, the porterhouse is great.

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                Wolfgang's
                409 Greenwich Street, New York, NY 10013

                Wolfgang's
                200 E 54th St, New York, NY 10022

                1. There's the original Palm on 3rd, their porterhouse was quite tasty. There's also Quality Meats on 58th ~ 6th -- their sides are v. good too.

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                  Quality Meats
                  57 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019

                  Palm
                  837 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017

                  1. Of course Peter Luger is the best. I strongly disagree with those saying Wolfgang's is better than Keens because in my opinion it is not. I have had to porterhouse 3 times at Keens and loved it- this is coming from someone who's eaten porterhouse at just about every top steakhouse in the city.

                    My picks would be Strip House, Keens, Old Homestead, and BLT Prime. Wolfgang's was good but I wasn't blown away. They are a Luger copycat that can't deliver the same level.

                    I can also vouch for the porterhouse at Craft. It was incredible.

                    I did not have the porterhouse at Porterhouse NY but on my one experience there they overcooked my ribeye which is a big no no.

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                    Keens
                    72 West 36th St., New York, NY 10018

                    Porter House New York
                    10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                    BLT Prime
                    111 East 22nd Street, New York, NY 10010

                    Craft
                    43 E. 19th St., New York, NY 10003

                    Old Homestead
                    56 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

                    Strip House
                    13 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: steakrules85

                      Having a hard time picking between Wolfgangs and Keens..........help!

                      1. re: dlgc

                        My good friend steakrules really knows his steaks. So, if he says Keens over Wolfgang's....

                        http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

                        1. re: dlgc

                          It really depends on what your criteria are. Keens is a wonderful place - I have been going there for a very long time and I love it. The atmosphere is unparalelled in NYC. But the food is not first rate - it's just not. Which is not to say it isn't good, but if it is simply the best porterhouse you are after (besides Luger), then Keens isn't it. But if you want a good porterhouse in a wonderful atmosphere, then Keen's it is. If you want the best porterhouse, then go to Wolfgang's - but the atmosphere doesn't compare to Keen's.

                      2. Here are the ratings. # 1 Peter Lugar #2 Wolfgangs #3 STK #4 BLT #5 Old Holmstead
                        the rest are all at the same level Del Friscos, The Palm, Palm 2, Ruth Chris, The Post House, Smith and Woolenskys, Ben Bensons, Sparks, Mortons, Keene's, Craft, Strip House

                        Special and Different Sammy's Romanian Steak House.

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                        Sparks Steak House
                        210 E 46th St, New York, NY 10017

                        Keens
                        72 West 36th St., New York, NY 10018

                        STK
                        26 Little West 12th St, New York, NY 10014

                        Craft
                        43 E. 19th St., New York, NY 10003

                        Del Frisco's
                        1221 6th Ave, New York, NY 10020

                        Wolfgang's
                        4 Park Ave, New York, NY 10016

                        Wolfgang's
                        409 Greenwich Street, New York, NY 10013

                        Old Homestead
                        56 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

                        Palm
                        837 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017

                        BLT Steak
                        106 East 57th Street, New York, NY 10022

                        Sammy's Roumanian
                        157 Chrystie St, New York, NY 10002

                        Smith & Wollensky
                        797 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10022

                        Ben Benson's
                        123 West 52nd Street, New York, NY 10019

                        Post House
                        28 E 63rd St, New York, NY 10021

                        Morton's the Steakhouse
                        551 5th Ave, New York, NY 10176

                        Ruth's Chris Steak House
                        148 West 51st Street, New York, NY 10019

                        Strip House
                        13 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

                        Palm Too
                        840 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017

                        Wolfgang's
                        200 E 54th St, New York, NY 10022

                        6 Replies
                        1. re: stewartlcohen

                          The one at Craft is far better than the one at BLT, as is pretty much everything else about the restaurant. I haven't had the one at Keenes so I can't fully participate in the above debate, but, you know, the guy's name is "steakrules"

                          1. re: nmprisons

                            With all due respect, steakrules has posted many things with which I disagree - I mean, somebody's handle is really not the way to decide if their tastes are aligned with yours....you have to read their posts over time.

                            1. re: gutsofsteel

                              A hearty +1 to that.

                              1. re: gutsofsteel

                                I agree that the OP shouldn't decide where to go based on my name or my opinion. This is just a topic I am very passionate about being a steak lover. And I feel the need to share my opinions on such subjects since I believe I know a thing or two about NYC steakhouses. I can sit here and probably recount every steak meal I've had from apps to desserts at every steakhouse and give a blow by blow of each one- where they excelled, failed, etc.

                                I'm just speaking on my personal experience regarding Keens. It has always given me a consistently delicious, huge, properly cooked porterhouse. The key being properly cooked. I don't why but still to this day, many places do not know how to cook a rare steak. Especially if you say bloody red rare with a charred crust. It's like it boggles their mind and they can't function. Too many times I go to places and they can't nail it, which upsets me because I can nail it at home on my own BBQ or in a cast iron pan.

                                Places will either serve you it lacking any kind of crust, and essentially purple on the inside or completely over charred and the inside is cooked almost medium well.

                                For Keens to pretty much be spot on in all of my experiences there is very impressive to me. Consistency is important. And I think they do their sides and desserts very well too so I disagree with those saying their food "just isn't good". French fries, creamed spinach. roasted cauliflower, wild mushrooms are all well done. Their sundaes are also delicious, especially the hot fudge and coffee cantata (their coffee ice cream sundae creation with raspberry sauce). The cuisine isn't anything nouveau or ultra creative but this is a steakhouse in every true sense of the word. Good old fashioned Americana and there is nothing wrong with that. Who needs all the fufu crap anyway? Places doing that are usually just trying to hide the fact that their steaks aren't top notch.

                                But Keens is not alone among my favorites. The same can be definitely be said for Strip House. They absolutely nail temperatures every time and their side dishes are absolutely amazing. I'd say it is probably my favorite Manhattan steakhouse with Keens. They are very different but great for totally different reasons as well. Goose fat roasted potatoes, Romanoff potatoes (mashed potatoes with melted cheese, sour cream mixed in), Creamed corn with pancetta, lobster mac and cheese, and of course the best creamed spinach ever is their black truffle infused beauty. Desserts such as baked alaska, grand chocolate profiterole, their famous 24 layer chocolate cake, and a cheesecake that was so delicious I couldn't stop going back for me and I don't even care for cheesecake. Here the food is more creative than your typical steakhouse, but they absolutely deliver.

                                Old Homestead is another favorite. Similar to Peter Luger and Keens in that it is very old school. But again nothing wrong with that. You see there is a reason why Keens (since 1885), Old Homestead (1868), and Peter Luger (1887) stay around.

                                BLT Prime is another solid option. Much like SH it is a nouveau steakhouse. Porterhouse is usually very well done. Their popovers to start you off are the best bread starter in the city IMO. Sides are also expertly prepared and creative. Blue cheese tater tots, gnocchi, potatoes au gratin, onion rings are all outstanding. Their desserts are wonderful too. Whatever sundae they are featuring make sure you get it because their sundares are some of the best around anywhere.

                                Craft is not a steakhouse but it is still turning out an incredible porterhouse as I stated earlier. It is a wonderful option for those who have others in their group who aren't huge steak eaters (which happens to be the case in my family). It provides wonderful fish, poultry, game and other various options. Again, the food preparations tend to me simple, straightforward but boy are they wonderful. Sometimes simplicity trumps everything else if it is done correctly. Let the ingredients speak for themselves. Their wild mushroom medley is fabulous and the roasted baby carrots were so naturally sweet and fresh they tasted like candy. Do you really need fancy rubs, sauces, etc. for an incredible piece of prime dry aged steak anyway?

                                One other that I forgot that deserves special mention in the "nouveau steakhouse" department is Quality Meats. Never had the porterhouse there, but their double ribeye(64 oz) was incredible. Their corn creme brulee is seriously addictive. Another place with a different take on sides and fabulous desserts. Make sure you get one of their ice cream creations.

                                Perhaps it was just my personal experiences, however at Porterhouse NY and Prime House I received overcooked steaks. Even at Wolfgang's, while I enjoyed my porterhouse it definitely could have been much rarer for my taste. Overcooking a steak you are being charged $85+ for is inexcusable in my eyes. And when I am at Wolfgang's, I always get the feeling like " Eh, this is just another Peter Luger copycat". If I want the real thing I am going to Peter Luger. To be honest I kind of felt cheated there. Also another reason why I don't have much of a desire to try the other copycats like Ben and Jack's, Mark Joseph, etc. All of these steakhouses that were former Luger waiters who decided to rip off their idea and try to make it the same thing. Can't be done. Can't replicate the original. Major fail. Kind of like a guy buying his wife a real Louis Vuitton bag for Christmas one year and the next year for some reason he decides to buy her one of those fakes ones from Chinatown. They may appear the same, serve the similar idea and function, but when it comes down to it they are obviously not.

                                Perhaps I should give each another try for redemption, however it is for this reason I haven't felt a need to venture back when I know I can go to others like Strip House, Keens, Old Homestead, etc. that are always consistent.

                                -----
                                Keens
                                72 West 36th St., New York, NY 10018

                                Porter House New York
                                10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                                BLT Prime
                                111 East 22nd Street, New York, NY 10010

                                Craft
                                43 E. 19th St., New York, NY 10003

                                Wolfgang's
                                4 Park Ave, New York, NY 10016

                                Quality Meats
                                57 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019

                                Old Homestead
                                56 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

                                Primehouse New York
                                381 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10016

                                Strip House
                                13 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

                                1. re: steakrules85

                                  I've only had the pleasure of going to Lugar's twice (first time was over 10 years ago), but to me, Lugar's and Wolfgang's steaks were on par with one another (I've been to Wolfgang's at least a half-dozen times). But I preferred the sides at Wolfgang's compared to the last time I went to Lugar's, say 2 years ago. It's the same sides, but I felt Lugar's was sloppily cooked.

                                  Wolfgang's probably gets the meats at the same place as Lugar's, same dry-aging process, clarified butter, salt, etc. The only thing I heard is different between the two restaurants is that Lugar's has this older stove who's high heat can't be replicated anymore. Or something to that effect.

                                2. re: gutsofsteel

                                  I've read many reviews by steakrules, and although I may not agree with all of them (I'm a big Momofuku fan and he isn't), I tend to agree with most of them. When it comes to steak, I trust his judgment 100%.

                            2. "We have been to Lugers and would like to try somewhere else if it's as good."

                              No NYC steakhouse is as good as Luger's when it comes to portehouse. Stick with Luger's. I'll go to Luger's everytime and if I want the best porterhouse in NYC. I agree that Keen's is high up on the NYC "old ambiance" count, but the steaks fall somewhere in the middle of the crowded pack of steakhouses.

                              1. Had some FABulous Porterhouse a couple of weeks ago at (where else?:-D) Porter House in the Time Warner Center. We'll definitely be back.

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                                Porter House New York
                                10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: ChefJune

                                  We made a reservation at Wolfgangs in Tribeca. Can't get into Luger,we tried!
                                  Cancelled Keens will try it next time.

                                  1. re: dlgc

                                    You made the right choice.

                                2. +1for Lugers, Del Friscos and BLT steak

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                                  Del Frisco's
                                  1221 6th Ave, New York, NY 10020

                                  1. Prime Meats in Brooklyn if you have a chance to visit the area. Otherwise, Quality Meats near Central Park (very nice decor and huge portions!).

                                    -----
                                    Quality Meats
                                    57 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: citykid426

                                      Thanks everyone, we had a great dinner last night at Wolfgangs. We started with a tomato and onion salad and a ceasar salad.

                                      We ordered a steak for two, and salmon. The steak was cooked as ordered, med rare. They forgot to order my salmon so I joined in on the steak. We all felt the steak was as good as Lugers and the sides of creamed spinach and hash browns were also Luger quality.

                                      Desert was apple strudel and schlag.........a great way to end a delish dinner.

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                                      Wolfgang's
                                      409 Greenwich Street, New York, NY 10013