I had read another blogger’s account of a rather unpleasant experience at The Steakhouse, quibbling with the restaurant manager about the validity (or not) of credit card promotions. With that in mind, I made sure to enquire about them when we ordered, so that I wouldn’t mar an otherwise pleasant dinner with an argument when settling the bill.
Good thing I did, because as I half expected, they refused to honour any promotions, claiming that restaurant policy was not to accept any on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Not even an actual coupon that had been sent to me by DBS, with clear terms and conditions printed “Until 31 Oct 07. Mon to Sun”. When I showed it to him, he said it was still subject to the restaurant’s own terms and conditions, and that it was a printing error on DBS’ part. I was fuming, because printing error or not, they ought to honour any misrep, but I really didn’t want to waste any more time on this, so I just put it behind me and concentrated on enjoying dinner. Eventually, he slinked back and ‘apologised’ again, and said he could offer a 10% discount. Whatever.
Anyway, I grudgingly admit that the food here was good. We ordered the bacon-wrapped scallops to start. Anything wrapped with bacon can’t really go wrong, but the scallops were nice and plump and juicy; still a little rare in the middle. The bacon was a bit undercooked, leading to parma ham syndrome where you end up chewing and swallowing a whole gulp of bacon. Still, it was a great combination.
The good thing about the steaks here is that most of them come in 200g and 300g portions, so larger eaters can be satisfied, and smaller eaters needn’t struggle. The New York Strip only comes in a 300g portion, though, and since it’s meant to be a specialty here, I ordered it to share with A, and he had his own 200g fillet mignon.
As you can see, the plates come quite bare – just the steak, with some roasted potatoes and carrots on the side. Like at Morton’s, you have to order your sides separately. They have a choice of quite a number of different sides, from mashed potatoes to creamed spinach to sautéed mushrooms, but we decided to try the giant grilled asparagus. For the size, the asparagus was actually very tender, and drizzled with a pesto-flavoured oil.
The Steakhouse specializes in Black Angus beef from Australia, which is apparently grain fed for 200 days. The steaks are grilled on a huge grill in the middle of the restaurant, and I must say they’re very well seared. Adequately salted (this is a must in my opinion, to bring out the flavour of the meat), the outside is wonderfully blackened and charred, and the insides are still pink and juicy. Being a very thick cut, A’s fillet mignon was a perfect medium rare but my thinner New York strip was thinner so it ended up a bit more on the side of medium. At first I enjoyed the intense beefy flavour of my striploin more than the fillet, but the striploin is known for its flavour but not its tenderness, so after more chewing, I sort of changed my mind. A’s fillet was actually a perfect balance of tenderness and flavour. Neither of our steaks really needed any of the sauces, which you can choose between quite an array, from red wine to mushroom to béarnaise.
Conclusion? Annoying restaurant manager notwithstanding, the rest of the waitstaff are very pleasant, and the steaks are good enough for us to come back. Maybe we’ll try the same cuts of meat at Les Bouchons again first, so that we can make a fair comparison between the two.
It was the waiter we talked to, and I think he handled it as best he could. I feel sorry for the junior staff who have to take shit for someone else’s mistake.
Anyway, as usual, I think starters more interesting than mains. I’m happy I can have my small portions and was genuinely impressed by my filet that didn’t need any sauce.
Clarke Quay, 3B River Valley Road
Tel: 6332 1010
Sun to Wed: 6pm to 11 pm
Thurs to Sat: 6 pm to 12 am