Bet you can guess what I selected at Carnevor. Steak! But not just any steak, a 20 ounce, 60 day dry-aged bone-in rib-eye. Ordered a la carte, the steak was the perfect looking cut placed on a white plate. An even crust surrounded the rib-eye and an un-burnt bone protruded roughly four inches away from the meat. This steak had presence. It’s what you expect from every steakhouse, but rarely receive. The plate itself was warm, but not hot. My first bites were well seasoned and tender. Simple salt and pepper seasoning. In terms of my medium-rare request, this steak was text-book perfect from the first bite until the last. Even the area near the bone wasn’t fleshy rare; it was medium rare. The best steakhouses in the country have difficulty with medium rare throughout. It was obvious the steak was allowed to rest after cooking and not hustled out of the window. I was very pleased with my steak.
But not all things at Carnevor were perfect. Of course I ordered creamed spinach and I was disappointed with their offering. They brought sautéed spinach first, which I had sent back. They quickly re-fired to bring me sautéed spinach with truffle cream. I had two bites. It was basically the same sautéed spinach put back in the pan with cream and truffle butter. Another disappointment was my starter of ahi tartare. Small portion size considering the price and I’ve had way better fish. Generally disappointing.
I ate at the bar over roughly 2.5 hours with the bartender as my server. She allowed me to try several wines with my steak until I settled on a Seghesio Zinfandel. I finished my evening with one of the Gaja offerings of grappa, I don’t remember specifics of the grappa. Professional staff behind the bar.
When I return to Milwaukee, I’d be happy to return to Carnevor, but only for a steak and another round, maybe two, at the bar.