Yeah, if you’re like me, you’ve heard how expensive Ruth’s Chris Steak House can be. I had a reservation once for me and my wife’s anniversary but we both got nervous that we wouldn’t like it and then regret spending that kind of money on one dinner, so we canceled our reservations. Well, last Saturday night we decided to take the leap of faith and try it out. After the video of my Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse Restaurant Review below, I break it all down for you.
1201 Riverplace Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL. 32207
Location: It’s located in the Crowne Plaza at the base of the Main Street Bridge. It is along the St. Johns River waterfront.
Pre-Food: If you are wealthy, then this review probably isn’t for you, this is what an average family (Husband, Wife, 2 kids, a dog and a fish without a ton of extra cash) experiences and worries about, when they think about going to Ruth’s Chris Steak House. Let me start at the beginning, so some of this won’t be food related but more of an overall feel of the place. First thing, we were nervous about sticking out. What do we wear? Will people automatically think “they don’t belong here”? Stuff like that. As far as what to wear, just wear something nice. I was wearing slacks and a nice retro button up shirt. The wife was wearing a nice little gray and white dress. Neither of us were very fancy but we weren’t wearing “Jorts” either. I did see some people wearing jeans with button up dress shirts. I would recommend slacks though. Something else that might cross a family is Valet Parking. As we were heading there, I did a quick glance of the car and saw crushed goldfish crackers in the backseats, toys everywhere, just a bunch of stuff…you know, they typical “soccer van”. That got us worried, will the valet judge us? Not to worry, the valet was super cool and obviously he has seen his fair share of family wagons. Oh, and in case you are wondering about valet, it’s $6. This is what the hotel (Crowne Plaza) charges, which Ruth’s Chris is located inside. I think you have an option to park yourself on the lower level and then try and walk up the ramp to the hotel, but here in Florida, in the heat, that is probably a bad idea. Just splurge on the valet and a small tip.
Food: Once we arrived for our reservation (always get a reservation unless you are going to sit at the bar), we were greeted by the chef and the Assistant General Manager (Eric) along with the hostess. I don’t know if this is typical or if we just happened to come in while they all where there, but it was very impressive. Everyone was very nice and already putting us at ease. We were quickly shown to our seat facing the waterfront and introduced to our server for the night, Karen. Bread and butter were placed on our table almost immediately as well. We thought we would let Karen know it was our first time there since we knew we would have some questions down the line. Karen immediately acted like it was no problem at all and would step us through the whole night, one step at a time. She took our drink order, the wife went with a glass of wine but I had my eye on the Blueberry Mojito (Menu description: Bacardi Silver Rum, Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice, Muddled Blueberries and Mint Leaves) for $12. I have to say that I may be a few years behind the “Mojito Craze” but that was the best Mojito I have ever tasted. I will be going back to get another one of these very soon. It was so fresh and just the right mix, the wife was jealous of my drink selection.
Next, for the appetizer, we ordered the Mushrooms Stuffed with Crabmeat (Menu description: Boiled mushroom caps with jumbo lump crab stuffing, sprinkled with romano cheese) for $12. I’m a big fan of stuffed mushrooms and these were awesome. There are 4 mushroom caps in this appetizer but they were pretty big and they didn’t skimp on the crab either. You can see from the pictures that they were amply stuffed. Both of us are fans of this appetizer, the mushrooms weren’t cooked to the point where they were mushy. They were still firm, yet they melted in your mouth. They also had a slight acidic taste to them which was a nice surprise.
We skipped salad, I’m not a huge fan of salad and I had been looking forward to their famous steaks, so we went right on to the entrée. The wife went with the Filet (Menu Description: The most tender cut of corn-fed Midwestern beef) for $38 and I went with the Ribeye (Menu Description: An outstanding example of USDA Prime at its best. Well marbled for peak flavor, deliciously juicy) for $40 but I added the Bleu Cheese Crust for another $4. If I’m going to do this, let’s do this thing right! Oh, before I forget, everything is À la carte, so that means that you have to order everything that you want, one item at a time. It all gets served at once though lol. You just get to specifically tailor your dinner to exactly what you want. We decided to share a potato dish and a vegetable dish after seeing the portion sizes and after speaking with Karen, our server. We ordered the Potatoes Au Gratin (Menu Description: Idaho sliced potatoes with a three cheese sauce) for $8.50 and the Broccoli Au Gratin (Menu Description: Steamed and served au Gratin in cheese sauce topped with melted sharp cheddar) for $8.50. We were in an “Au Gratin” mood! I don’t know how to NOT SOUND like I’m repeating everything, but everything was VERY VERY GOOD. The steaks came out sizzling in butter (yeah, my future cardiologist probably won’t like me). They were cooked and seasoned to perfection. The bleu cheese crust was all kinds of awesome. I’m hooked on that now and I’m going to try it at home (which I know I will fail at miserably). The Ribeye was huge! I ended up only eating half of it and if you know me, or have seen me, that says a lot! See this movie clip for the best steak appearance in a movie:
The Broccoli Au Gratin was perfectly seasoned, the broccoli was cooked just right and the cheese was great, nice and creamy. The Potatoes Au Gratin were good too but I thought they were just a slight bit undercooked. Some slices were just right, and then an occasional one would taste just a tad hard/undercooked. That would be my one and only critique of the entire night, and that was probably just a personal preference. The perfect way to end the night was to end with the Crème brûlée (Menu Description: The classic Creole egg custard, topped with fresh berries and mint) for $9. The hard caramel top was just the right thickness. Some of the more recent ones I have had at other places were hard to breakthrough and tasted chemically. Not this one, the custard was nice and chilled and the berries were a nice touch too.
Extras: I was impressed with everything. From the great service and advice from Karen, to the attention to detail of wiping the crumbs off the table on every visit. The view, mixed with great food made it worth every penny. If you ever had any reservations about coming due to the price/value, you can put those aside and go enjoy it. I was very pleased with the whole night and honestly, I was a little worried that I wouldn’t. Of course this won’t be an every week thing for me due to the price range, but you can count on it that it will be a serious contender come any special event or celebration. Now, I think I have a birthday coming up…. that sounds like a reason to go back and “verify” my originally findings, don’t you think?
– Awesome steak
– Great service
– Awesome view
– Lots of options