A good friend of mine is celebrating a birthday this week and I offered to take him to dinner. He decided to combine his love of steak with his love for the Sopranos. The result was a recent trip to Embers steakhouse in Bay Ridge.
It fully lived up to it's billing. The decor was Luxe Italiano, just what we were looking for. Lotsa mirrors. Most of the clientele looked like extras in a mob movie and the remainder looked like the leads. There were rich conversations playing out around us but it was tricky to eavesdrop without being obvious about it. The thought crossed my mind that displaying inappropriate curiosity could result in bodily harm so I was very discreet.
The food was quite good, especially at that price point. We started with mozzarella and tomato - pleasant but nothing remarkable.
We then split the 60 oz. steak for two. It sounds like a lot, hell it *is* a lot, but there was a large bone included so we didn't feel like total gluttons. While the meat wasn't of Peter Luger quality it compared favorably with standard restaurant steaks. It was nicely charred on the outside and rare on the inside as ordered.
As a side dish we ordered the famous potato pie, described as mashed potato flavored with prosciutto, then coated lightly with bread crumbs and baked. How could we resist such a healthy treat? For some reason I expected something like a potato croquette with a thick crust and a bland inside. It was much better than that - the crust was much thinner and lighter and the prosciutto flavor gave the potato a little zip. I'd certainly order it again. Sauteed green beans completed the main course and they were more than decent.
We each had a couple of drinks and finished with cappuccinos - the total bill came to about $115. A word of warning they dont take credit cards.
While we were eating the girl from the front reservation desk minced by on impossibly high heels. She looked like an aging Michelle Pfeiffer reliving her "Married to the Mob" role. The rough looking gentlemen at the table across the room invited her to join them and we were treated to the type of Brooklyn dialog that shows up in movies all the time but is not often heard on the streets. My friend was in his glory.
As we say in Brooklyn It is what it is. You could do a lot worse.
Embers 9519 Third Avenue in Bay Ridge between 95th and 96th Street. No reservations.