Embers Steakhouse overall score: 81
I recently grabbed this Groupon deal for Embers because my buddy recently moved to the area, and I figured we would give this place a shot on my next visit to see his new place. I was pleasantly surprised with some aspects of the meal, and a little disappointed with others. Read on, my friends:
We had a group of four with us, so we went with the porterhouse for two and the tomahawk rib eye for two, that way we were able to try all the major cuts in one shot.
The tomahawk was a solid 9/10, and with a slight amount of tweaking I think this could be a 10. The sear was great, and the cook temperature was perfect. Also this is one of the larger bones I have seen come to the table in a while. The steak had to be about 50oz, if I had to guess.
I was impressed with the quality of the fat cap and how it was still pink through the center. Lots of times the cap can get overcooked since the fat in there gets hot very fast while cooking, and since it is on the outer edge of the steak, it can get overcooked. Check it out though – still nice and pink:
Keep in mind, this massive tomahawk chop was only $75, too. Amazing value here.
The porterhouse was unfortunately a bit overcooked. It lacked flavor and seasoning as well, despite a few parts of each side being salvageable. I’d say this comes in at about a 6/10.
Choice of Cuts & Quality Available: 9
There are a lot of different cuts to choose from here, and several variations of each cut in terms of size and quality. They have a skirt steak to boot, in addition to the four main cuts of beef. Actually, one of the four rib eyes they offer is even advertised as grass fed and hormone free. As you can see, a couple are labeled as Angus, too. I have to say, I was impressed with this selection. And even though I wasn’t a fan of the porterhouse and didn’t award top points for the tomahawk, I can confidently say that this is some near perfect beef in terms of quality. Maybe some additional aging time and another filet, along with more delineated sizes/ounces would take it to 10.
The selections up top are all dry-aged right next door at Vinnie’s Butcher Shop, where they source their meats, so they could easily push the aging time from 20 days to something like 35.
I went in there to take a look before we ate, and I can assure you that the quality is good, and the prices are very affordable, even for dry aged Angus beef.
Portion Size & Plating: 8
Portions are good here, especially for the price point. Sides weren’t too big or too small either. If you don’t notice the portion size too much either way, then that usually means they are correct.
Amazing prices here. They rival the suburbs, but with city quality food. I think I paid $92 for the Groupon, which got me $200 worth of food. With tax and tip, each couple threw in another $65. So all in I spent $111 for two people’s meals (we split the Groupon as well). Also, if you come on the weekend, they offer a $16 brunch special. Pretty good deal.
Embers is located on a major avenue in Bay Ridge where people congregate to go to bars and restaurants. There’s a nice bar that can seat maybe 10 people near the window, and they make some nice drinks as well.
Specials and Other Meats: 8
There were a bunch of specials offered on a separate paper menu, and the joint does offer veal, lamb and chicken in terms of alternative meats. They also have an Italian sausage platter for a very fair price ($18).
Apps, Sides & Desserts: 7
We had some stand-outs here, but also some that fell short. We started with one of the stars of the meal, the “bacon steak.” These two slabs cost just $10 for both.
They were amazing. Perfectly crisp and seasoned, nice and meaty, good quality fat, and served with a tangy and robust steak sauce.
Next was the octopus and calamari app that was on special. They were braised and grilled, nice and tender.
Our two steaks came with two sides and a vegetable each, so another notch on the price/value belt. We tried roasted corn, baked potato, french fries, grilled zucchini and potato pie. What is potato pie? It’s mashed potato with mozzarella cheese and prosciutto. AWESOME! Not really photogenic, though. I totally got lazy and phoned it in on these pics, folks. Sorry.
To sum up: get the fries (awesomely crisp) and the potato cake. Pass on the baked potato, for sure. It came with no accompaniments.
Dessert was similar: hit and miss. The creme brulee was good. It was creamy and made correctly.
The cookie cake was good. Like a thick, soft cookie in cake format with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
The peach melba was flat. The peaches tasted like they were maybe canned rather than fresh. Otherwise nice whipped cream.
Seafood Selection: 7
There’s shrimp, salmon and a catch of the day in terms of seafood, aside from the standard shellfish type items on the app menu. From what we tried, I would probably consider ordering a fish entree from here on another visit, or maybe sharing one with my wife as a snack while devouring another tomahawk.
The service here was good, and the waiters were friendly and attentive. They missed one minor item with my buddy’s martini, but this was nothing to make a stink about. Bathrooms could use a remodel or a freshen-up, but table bread in the afternoon on the weekend was interesting, as it consisted of brunch mini-muffins.
This is a nicely appointed mom & pop joint. The dining room isn’t trying too hard to be fancy or elegant. It doesn’t feel like it needs anything. It’s perfect for what it is, yet you still know you’re eating in a steakhouse. They even have a small side room for larger parties.
I would definitely go here again. I think I would go with the Tomahawk again, the slab bacon, the french fries and I’d maybe try one of the spinach items. With the Groupon deal in hand, this joint is a no-brainer. You should definitely go. Just listen to my recommendations and you are all good.
9519 3rd Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11209