Del Frisco’s

I recently dined here for a fourth time, and I’ve confirmed that the wagyu long bone rib eye is by far the greatest steak I’ve ever eaten.

The quality of the flesh is just outstanding. Every bit of it is edible, juicy and savory. Del’s uses a lot of crushed pepper to get a good crust on their steaks, and that “rub,” so to speak, really permeates down to the center of the meat and imparts flavor from end to end.

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Fucking unbelievable. I was even gnawing on the bone.

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As you can see in the background of one of the other pics, there’s another chunk of steak on my plate. My buddy and I split both the wagyu long bone, and the boneless strip.

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As you can see, it was also cooked perfectly, and crusted with that great peppercorn rub – the strip is on the left, and the wagyu is on the right.  Although the strip can not hold a candle to that wagyu in terms of insane flavor, it was still one of the best strip steaks I’ve ever had. Del’s just really knows what’s up.

My wife ordered the special cowboy bone in rib eye that was on the menu. This, too was excellent.

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You really can’t go wrong with any cut of meat here. My buddy’s wife ordered the 12oz filet, and that was great as well. Buttery, savory, peppery and juicy.

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As you can see from the pics above, some of the plating wasn’t as pretty as in the past. It seems like Del’s got rid of their signature chopped parsley across the top and on the plate. They also failed to wipe up some of the juices from when they placed the steak on the plate and then adjusted the positioning. Not a big deal though, especially considering how delicious every cut of meat is at this joint.

The first app that we tried this time was burrata. I thought it was a little too light on the cheese and too heavy on the tomatoes, but the quality was excellent.

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The escargot was nicely executed. While I’ve had better at French joints, this was served on toasted bread like bruscetta, and in a really nice buttery sauce.

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The crab legs we ordered were super pricey, but super fresh. These are dangerous because you could really eat your entire paycheck in just a few minutes time.

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After the crab legs, our awesome waiter Luke brought out some hot towels and a lemon wedge to clean up from handling the shells.

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But in all honesty it wasn’t needed, because with the insane service you get at Del’s, the shells are already cracked, opened and easy for meat extracting.

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The chateau potatoes we ordered on the side were a bit dry. They were skin-on mashed potatoes with garlic and some spinach greens. Perhaps if they were served with a gravy they’d be killer.

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The pancetta is what made these brussels really great. I prefer a harder roast and some char on my brussels, in general, but they were nice and tiny so the surface area was coated nicely with all the seasonings and flavors. It didn’t get monotonous-tasting like brussels sometimes can.

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For dessert, we tried the lemon cake, as it is a crowd favorite and secret menu gem, as well as the sweet potato casserole (with ice cream on top). I have to say that the version at Ruth’s Chris is better. That lemon cake, though, is wonderful. The cake is moist without being too heavy or dense. And while there is a LOT of frosting on this baby, it is really tasty and I didn’t think it was overly sweet.

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The other cake on the plate there with the lemon cake is something that the staff sent out for us on the house, since it was my buddy’s birthday. It was a butter cake with caramel ice cream. That shit was the best desert of the night, and it’s right up there with my favorites of all time.

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The outside held a nice crunchy sweet crust, but the inside was buttery sweet with a slight bit of savory to boot. Drizzled with a little bit of sweet caramel and maple syrup type of shit, it really hit the spot.

Then the bad news showed up. DAMN! But worth every penny.

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The bar here is still amazing, as I remembered. It was packed out all night, really great buzz. And the bread served at the table comes with a really soft whipped butter that has just the right amount of salt content.

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So Del’s ended up remaining at a 97/100. I pulled one point for the apps/sides, since the burrata and the potatoes were both somewhat failures. I considered pulling a point for the plating since the plates weren’t as pretty as the past, but I reconsidered because that seems petty and retarded. I tacked on a point for price, though, since I really feel that despite the astronomical pricing of some of the shit here, it really is worth the money. If you’re going to splurge on a steak dinner, you may as well do it the right way. That means going to Del’s and being fully aware of the wallet rape that is to come.

Del Frisco’s Overall Score: 97/100 – price moved from 8/10 to 9/10, and apps/sides/desserts moved from 10/10 to 9/10. So we evened out and remained at 97.

OLDER REVIEWS REMAIN POSTED BELOW 

Del Frisco’s overall score: 97

Ever since I became obsessed with NYC steakhouses back in 2000, I have heard overwhelmingly great things about Del Frisco’s “Double Eagle” Steakhouse. I finally nailed down a time to go with a group of old friends and coworkers when one was back in town from California. A nice 25 second stroll from my office took me to one of the best steakhouses in the city. A second trip to this joint in December of 2012 solidified Del Frisco’s place in my top five. New info added on that trip is in italics. After a third trip, comments in BOLD, this place is tied for first.
Flavor: 10
I ordered the ribeye that they had on special; a 22oz bone-in cut of heaven. It had a nice seasoned crust, the kind of marbled fat that just melts away and gets really soft, and it was perfectly cooked. It could have rested another two minutes, but that didn’t alter juice or flavor qualities. My friend ordered the filet. I had a bite of that, and it was delicious and well seasoned too. Del Frisco’s certainly lived up to the hype for me in terms of flavor. On a second trip with a couple of buddies from Junior High, High School and beyond, I ordered the house special: the double eagle bone-in strip. It, too was cooked perfectly and tasted delicious. On the third trip I had the $94 wagyu ribeye, which was easily one of the best steaks I’ve ever had in my life (if not THE best). It was 32oz of pure heaven. Delicious flavor from end to end; juicy, tender, and cooked to a perfect medium rare. See the pic below:
rib eye, strip, filet
rib eye, strip, filet
32oz wagyu ribeye
32oz wagyu ribeye
Choice of Cuts & Quality Available: 10
Everything on the menu is prime quality. They only have the four basic cuts (filet, ribeye, porterhouse and strip), but they offer several varieties of each, like the 38oz longbone American “wagyu” ribeye and some specials (see below). This makes up for the initial point I was going to take for not having anything outside the basics. Del Frisco’s shows that when you do the basics the right way, nothing else is needed.
Portion Size & Plating: 9
The filet comes in two flavors: vaginal (8oz) and quasi-manly (12oz). They also have 16oz strips and ribeyes (boneless) – a bit on the small side but not horrific. They also offer a signature bone-in “double eagle” strip at 26oz, as well as a 24oz porterhouse, and a special bone-in filet at 16oz. The relatively smaller sizes make it easy for the eye to wander to the 38oz “wagyu” ribeye at 2x the price, or the specials at 1.5x the price. Well worth the up-charge, in my opinion. The plating is super-basic. But for real men with balls swinging between their legs, plating isn’t really something you go yammering to your friends about anyway.
Price: 8 (now 9/10)
In my opinion the price was a bit on the hefty side for the size of the cuts, but relatively on par with other NYC steakhouses of even footing. What they lack in size is made up for in taste, so you kinda even out on price value. The filets are $40 and $47, ribeye $46, and strip $48. The porterhouse comes in at $58, and the wagyu at $92. The specials ran in the mid $60 range. The signature crab cake comes in at a pricey, but worthy, $21 (crab cake went up $1 since last visit, but I guess that’s just standard inflation). My martini at the bar was $18.50 (an incredible $20 when you leave a tip). The total bill for two appetizers, three beers, a vodka tonic, two steaks, two sides and a dessert was about $300 (tax and tip included). On my second trip, I took a photo of the elusive Mr. William Price, that way you scumbags can see just exactly what everything cost:
William Price
William Price
I HAD to include the bill from the third visit, simply because it oozed manliness (with the exception of the trio of filets that was ordered… and the patron cafe’s were also mocked as well):
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Bar: 10
The main bar is really beautiful. Del Frisco’s has a wide open floor plan with a nice wrap-around bar internally positioned alongside the high windows in the corner of the restaurant. There is also a nice sized second bar on the second floor with a couple of flat panel TVs for sports. The martini could have used a little less vermouth, and was a bit pricey, but overall the bar experience was great. This is definitely an after work spot worth checking out after a hard day at the office, even if you don’t eat the meat. On my second trip, the martinis were made much nicer, our incredible waiter Tim introduced me to one of the most delicious, peaty scotches I have ever tasted (Ardbeg Corryvreckan), and we also ordered a wine from the extensive wine list. I also took note of an interesting passage featured above the bar: DO RIGHT AND FEAR NO MAN. The quote, as far as I can tell, dates back to a 15th century proverb out of England, and then later common in 18th century Scotland. On the third visit I had a chat with the manager about my score for the bar. I flat out told him that I just have a personal hold-out in giving this place a 10 because the martini is so fucking expensive. It really is an awesome bar though, and there are actually two bars (there’s one upstairs with a TV)… so… in the interest of making sure this place ties for first among NYC steakhouses, I am reluctantly giving full points here despite the cost of a martini.
bar ambiance
Specials and Other Meats: 10
Aside from the “wagyu” ribeye, the other carcasses were on the order of lamb chops, veal porterhouse, pork porterhouse and roasted chicken. That covers the whole basic range. Those are all standard menu items, so it is a good selection for people who don’t feel like being a man. On special there was the 22oz bone-in ribeye, which I had ($65). There was also the conundrum 16oz bone-in filet ($68) and trio of filets (also somewhere in the low to mid $60s range). They also had some seasonal shellfish special appetizers too.
two 8oz lamb chops - fantastic
two 8oz lamb chops – fantastic
Apps, Sides & Desserts: 10 (now 9/10)
I had been told – no ORDERED – by a friend to get the crab cake, so I did. It was a succulent 4oz ball with mostly lump crab meat and a bit of breadcrumb for texture. It sat upon a nice spicy lobster-based, peppery sauce. The creamed spinach, called “spinach supreme,” had bacon folded into it, perhaps cheese as well. Delicious. My friend recommended the skillet potato dish as well – which was like fresh homemade potato chips topped with sauteed caramelized  onions; not too greasy, not too salty. Really tasty. For dessert, we ordered a massive slice of lemon cake that was not on the menu (a secret item they don’t generally offer – you have to know about it). To quote one friend, it was WAY more moist than Starbucks’ lemon loaf, that is for damned sure. I’m generally not a cake person but it was yummy, even if rumors say it is made from four boxes of Duncan Hines cake mix. On a second trip, we had a dozen oysters, lobster mac & cheese, steak tartare, and the obligatory crab cakes and creamed spinach. I must say, the lobster mac & cheese was freaking delicious. It was nice and creamy, it had great crunch for texture, and the lobster bits were pretty good too. The oysters were perfect, but the steak tartare was one of the best and largest orders I’ve ever had. It had to be a solid 2-3 inches high, and 3-4 inches on each side. A nice brick of raw meat. What better way to prime the gullet before a nice steak dinner?
tartare & oysters
tartare & oysters
special burrata app
special burrata app
Seafood Selection: 10
An impressive selection of caviar graced the appetizer menu in addition to the delicious shellfish selections. On the entree menu was sea bass, scallops, salmon, tuna and a special catch of the day, as well as lobster. They also offered some special seafood items on the appetizer angle that weren’t on the menu. If you have a bleeding vagina, these might tempt you to not get steak.
Service: 10
Our waitress may have forgotten a water here and there but it was busy. She was very nice though, thorough, and wanted to personally thank us and email us deals and things. She certainly presented the specials in such a way that they were deemed much better than the regular menu items; perhaps looking for that up charge? Hey, if she did, then it worked on me… but it was worth it. I asked her about the differences between the standard 16oz and special 22oz ribeyes. She showed a well-versed meat lingo, but essentially said that one was bone-in and one was boneless. When our steaks arrived, the server asked us to cut into the center so he could make sure it was cooked properly. There was a warm sesame bread loaf and soft whipped butter as well. Our service was excellent on the second trip. Our waiter Tim went really above and beyond expectations. Before we could even remind him that we had ordered two plates of oysters, he came by with the second. He offered great insight into our scotch selections at dessert, and he helped us navigate the extensive wine list when picking a bottle to drink while eating our steak. He certainly knew his meat too, so I am giving the full 10 points here. While settling up the bill, I handed Tim one of my cards to let him know that I’d be giving the joint a great review and adding some points on his account. After that, Scott, the regional manager of the Del Frisco’s restaurant group, came over to greet us and thank us for our business. This is the kind of top notch service that really makes me smile, and want to go back for thirds. 
Ambiance: 10
Del Frisco’s is set up with a nice, classy open design. It is semi-corporate in feel, simply by virtue of the surrounding neighborhood, but it still feels like old, art-deco New York. Despite its vastness, it manages to be really warm and inviting. There are floor to ceiling windows 30ft high. Beautiful views. This place would be amazing around the holidays. There was a bathroom attendant, but otherwise it was a normal style bathroom, nothing fancy. Just clean.
UPDATE 7/23/17
Dry Aged Strip: 10/10
This baby is delicious. A bit pricey at $70 for the special “up-charge” steak, but the flavor was excellent.

DEL FRISCO’S
1221 6th Ave.
New York, NY 10020

5 thoughts on “Del Frisco’s”

    1. Last time I went I still loved it. Management has changed since but I still recommend the wagyu rib eye all the time. One of the best steaks in the city.

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