I first sank my teeth into a glorious filet mignon at the Strip House in 2000. My how things change.
I remember the amuse bouche being a wonderful touch, the shrimp cocktail succulent and spicy, the bone marrow a surprising treat, the service humble and attentive and, of course, the best steak I'd had to-date. Subsequently, it became our special place for 6 years, where we knew we'd walk out of there having fixed our steak-night jones. I loved it so much that I only told my closest friends how good it truly was, so that it wouldn't get too popular.
Then, in 2006 a steak-o-phyle friend and I went for a celebratory martini/steak dinner and waited for 1 hour between appetizers and mains with no sign of our waiter. We thought he might be trapped under large furniture and unable to get to our steaks. When he arrived with them they were the wrong ones and had to be sent back. Okay, everybody has a bad night once in a while, so I kept the faith and moved on. Next time I went was with 3 friends for a birthday celebration. Not a large party by any means, and yet, despite our 8pm reservation on a Tuesday night, they couldn't find a place to put us. So we waited... till 9:45. And then they rushed us though our meal.
K. One last time. My birthday. 2007. 8:30 rezzie. Met husband at bar for martini. Waited till 9:45 to be seated. Ordered appetizers. Ordered a great bottle of wine. Enjoying both when waiter approaches and pulls appetizers off table - mid-bite. Okay... maybe steak (porterhouse to share) came out quicker than was expected. Nope. One half hour later, out came a mess of chopped-up dried up overdone meat and gristle. Speechless. We couldn't keep from laughing. We asked the waiter if he would eat the mess. No, was his reply. Could we try again, please. Of course, he replies and off he went. 6 minutes later he returns (by now it is 11:15pm) with a semi raw - not even rare - "steak" that couldn't be cut into. Husband had enough. Pays for wine and appetizer we didn't get to finish and we walk out, hysterically laughing.