Monday, September 1, 2008

Bourbon Steak @ Turnberry Isle

This is tough review to begin. Do I start with the grand entrance to the hotel? The outstanding service? The beautiful chic decor? The ambiance? They are all fantastic. This restaurant is worth a visit, especially with the Miami Spice menu available. The Chef, Michael Mina puts together a nice presentation and has several restaurants based out of San Francisco.

I had been looking forward to trying Bourbon Steak for a while, and I was teeming with excitement. I had been told by several people that one of Mina's signature items were the Trio of Duck Fat Fries. Imagine my surprise as I sat down and a complimentary order of the fries were plopped down in front of me. The item is normally an $8 side dish. Contrary to what one might envision this dish to be, it is simply presented in three varieties: Smoked Paprika and Mustard, Saffron and Garlic, and Rosemary and Onion. Each variety is presented in an individual small glass served standing up. As if the flavored fries were not enough he has paired them with three different dips: Smoked Paprika and Mustard Crème Fraîche, Saffron and Garlic Aïoli, and Onion Ketchup. All I can say is délicieux.

The Miami Spice Menu appetizers offered were: Sweet Corn Soup with Jalapeño and Jack Grilled Cheese, Sausalito Springs Watercress with Mission Figs, Pistachio, Goat Cheese, and Cumin-Dusted Tempura Prawns with Cucumber-Mango Salad. I opted for the Prawns, which were served piping hot and perfectly, lightly fried. They were piled on a tasty salad and overall gets a "A".

The name of the game is steak, so lets take a look at the menu offerings. On the Miami Spice menu, I was surprised to be confronted with an up charge of $10 in order to opt for the Filet Rossini with Crispy Shallot Potato Cake, and Foie Gras. Your other options were: Wood-Grilled Organic Chicken with Chicken-Scallion Ravioli, and Ginger-Carrot Emulsion, or Swordfish with Caramelized Pearl Onions and Yukon Potatoes, Tomatoes, and Beurre noisette Sauce. We ordered the Swordfish and Filet. The Swordfish was marinated and cooked to perfection; however, it was a very small piece of fish. The Filet was good, but I pegged it at about 6 oz., again a very small portion, especially in light of the surcharge. The Potato Cake and Foie Gras were good but not great. The main course gets a "B" rating which is good.

Finally, the desert menu. Your choice of either Doughnuts “Foster” with Bananas, Cinnamon Ice Cream or Beignets and Valrhona Chocolate Pot De Crème. They were both excellent and worthy of ordering.

A few notes about Bourbon Steak. The portions are small, and the prices are high. I reviewed the regular menu as well as the wine list. The regular menu prices about $10 per entree over the other super premium steak houses for their Angus Beef. They also host a plethora of Kobe Beef which is very pricey ($72 for the Kobe Filet). The wine list was a bit on the pricey side as well; however, it was extensive and well stocked. This is one place I would certainly take advantage of during Miami Spice Restaurant Month. I'm fairly sure I would not pay the regular menu prices for Bourbon Steak although I did enjoy the experience. Good job Bourbon Steak.

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