I had a chance to take advantage of Restaurant Week after winning a few dollars on scratch tickets, so I joined Madge, Boris and my friend Phillip out for dinner at the Capital Grille in North Scottsdale.
With 8:30 PM reservations in hand, we met at the place and were immediately seated in one of the side rooms at a four-top. I loved the interior with its clubby atmosphere and comfortable seating. We were handed regular menus as well as the RW menu. We asked if RW had been successful and our hostess indicated that it was a smashing win for Capital Grille. "We have turned 305 specials today." Wow! Considering the economy, this was a bit surprising, but the place was still buzzing at 8:30.
Right off the bat, we were given a choice of ordering bottled water or having tap and we chose the latter. A big basket of assorted breads arrived featuring this wonderful raisin-flecked pumpernickel bread.
Our server arrived and took our drink order with Boris and I having iced tea and Diet Coke respectively while Madge and Phillip had cocktails. We then placed our order. We all decided to go for the three-course Restaurant Week menu at $29.00 per person.
For our first course, Boris and Phillip had the French Onion Soup, Madge had the Caesar Salad and I had the Mixed Green Herb Salad. The second course had three of us going with the 10 oz. Kona Crusted Dry Aged Sirloin and Madge had the 8 oz. Filet. The desserts were split between the Flourless Chocolate Espresso Cake and the Creme Brulee.
We also decided to enhance our meals with some side orders and had the Vidalia Onion Rings ($9.00) and two orders of the Au Gratin Potatoes ($9.00 each). Our server also informed us that one side did come with the meals and we opted for the Carrots and Sugar Snap Peas in Cranberry Walnut butter.
The first course was a 75% success. Boris and Phillip said the French Onion Soup was very good but lamented the fact that they were not given soup spoons and our server disappeared so they used their teaspoons for the soup. Madge wasn't thrilled with her Caesar Salad as she found it dry, noting the dressing was all but missing. My Mixed Green Herb Salad, on the other hand, was fantastic. Mixed greens, chives, and heirloom tomatoes were tossed with a light vinaigrette and then topped with a pat of creamy blue cheese. Fantastic.
The entrees arrived along with the sides and everyone was very happy. The 10 oz. Kona Crusted Sirloin received raves. The meat was exceptionally tender and the Kona crust gave the sirloin a very welcome chocolate undertone (trust me, it worked fabulously). Madge gave a big thumbs up to her filet. The sides were also quite good. The Au Gratin Potatoes were devoured. The slices of potatoes were stacked and infused with plenty of butter, cheese and cream. Heaven.
The Carrots and Sugar Snap Peas were gorgeous and we loved the preparation. The dried cranberries and the hint of walnut really make the dish sparkle. It was an excellent mix of tastes. The Vidalia Onion Rings were outstanding. I loved the Panko crust that was super crunchy. The onions were sweet and tender.
Our desserts arrived and the Flourless Chocolate Cake was quite rich and heavy. The slice of cake was substantial and served with whipped cream and fresh raspberries. The presentation was pretty and the taste was excellent. The espresso didn't overwhelm the chocolate. However, the cake was incredibly dense and so rich I left a third on my plate because it was just too much (and that wasn't necessarily a negative). Phillip and Madge raved about the Creme Brulee. They were trying to decide if it was the best they have had but came to no conclusion other than it was stellar.
Our meals were excellent. The only issue we had was spotty service. The problems we encountered were minor, but were apparent. Missing flatware and cutlery, beverage glasses not being refilled in a timely manner and long stretches where our server would vanish had me somewhat concerned, but the food and conversation shoved those concerns to the back of my mind.
In summation, we had four RW specials, three additional side dishes, three soft beverages and two cocktails. Wtih tax, our bill was just above $187.00. We thought it was a steal for what we got.
This was the second Capital Grille I have eaten at (the other being in Atlanta) and I continue to be impressed. It really was a fine meal and I would go back to CG in a heartbeat.
I am very happy that I got to share it with great friends.
16489 North Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale, AZ 85254