So my very picky brother came to the states (he lives in Costa Rica) a few weeks ago and wanted to go out to dinner. I didn’t really feel like hiking it all the way down South – not even to mid-town or the Design District, but was at a loss. What would satisfy his need for the best food and service – while remaining really close to home. Well, let’s see – Chef Allen… gone. Pilar… too old-school. Grill on the Alley, Bella Luna, Cheesecake Factory (yeah, right) …all “mall”…not going to happen.
So after racking my brain, I remembered Turnberry. Bourbon Steak. When you think about Michael Mina, you just can’t go wrong. So in we went. It was quiet…at 8:30 ona Saturday. I was a bit surprised bwecasue I’d expected a bit of chaos. Aventurians do not usually go to dinner much later than the 8PM hour so I thought, “Hmmm…maybe something is wrong.”
But much to the contrary. At 9 PM the place started filling up. Not the tables so much, but the entire bar area. There was a private party. And as the folks filed in, the appetizers began circulating and all was right in the world. Little sliders, bacon wrapped scallops, fries, fries, and more fries, and the like.
From our “front view table” my husband Ian and I, my brother and our friends Charles and Jacque all watched the action while dining on delicious cuisine. So, what did we have? Okay, here’s the deal. As we sat down, mere minutes after out perfectly mixed artisanal cocktails were transferred from the bar to our table, the waiter delivered Bourbon Steak’s signature fries. Some places offer bread – Mina’s idea of an “on the house” starter are hand-cut fires. They come – crispy, hot and fresh from the fryer with three dipping sauces including a house made ketchup.
Starters, which are not inexpensive, are large enough to share. I began with the heirloom tomato salad, which was served with Burrata cheese, pine nuts, and a light vinaigrette ($18). I could have stopped there and it would have been enough, but naturally, hat is dinner without, well, dinner. I ordered short ribs with celery root purée, baby vegetables, and perigourdine ($32). The meat was so tender it literally fell off the bone. Being a fan of slow cooked food, I was thrilled with my choice.
My husband began with Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho, which was topped with Alaskan King Crab, and Serrano Chili. It was light and refreshing and a perfect beginning to his petite Wagyu NY Strip ( medium rare and was so tender it was fork-cuttable). Served with Short Rib Croutons, Jasmine Rice, and Cilantro Chimichurri it would have been worth any price, however, as part of the Miami Spice menu (on a Saturday, too) – it was only $45 (usually $35 but there was a $10 supplement – it is Wagyu after all).
Specials occur regularly, and that particular night, they were offering a 48-ounce bone in New York Strip for just $125. Okay, it was on the pricey side, but there was a lot of “dinner” waiting to happen. After a bit of hemming and hawing, my bro decided that it was his vacation and he could indulge if he chose to. And with that, a stunning piece of beef, prepared a perfect medium and pre-sliced came to the table the pan it was cooked in. I am not sure how I feel about this because, while it was flavorful and well done (as in perfectly prepared), there were only seven medium slices of meat. Most of the weight came from the bone. We were, at first, going to share it and if we had chosen to go that route, we would’ve been sorely disappointed (and still hungry).
Sides are all separate. We shared broccoli – nothing special, but being a fan of the veggie – it was quite tasty. The truffled mac and cheese was creamy and tasty, and in my opinion, amazing. After all, you can never go wrong with anything with the word truffle in the title.
One of our friends ordered the scallops. For $36, he received a few medium sized crustaceans on a plate. They were prepared nicely, but he is a big guy and definitely needed more food.
The hit of the night came at the end. Ian’s spice menu selection included dessert. Not a huge fan of dessert, I always tend to prefer walking away with savory in my mouth. He ordered bread pudding. Bourbon and Peach bread pudding topped with Vanilla bean ice cream was enough to make it all worth it.
After each taking a very satisfying bite, we paid the check and left satisfied.
So, all in all, would I rush back? Perhaps, for select things when I want to indulge. It is expensive. But being that it is so close to my house, it did the trick.
Shari Lynn Rothstein has been writing about food, wine, lifestyles and fashion for more than 20 years, in New York and Florida. She resides in Aventura. Shari can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, mailto:email@example.com for comments, questions thoughts.