Sunday, January 3, 2016

Alexander’s Steakhouse - Cupertino

5/5 stars


Dear Owner of Alexander's Steakhouse,

You hired the right man for the job.

Your General Manager, Kevin Clark, went out of his way to make my mom's birthday yesterday the best birthday she's ever had.

My mom is the bravest woman I know. She left her entire family when she was basically just a teenager. Just a girl. She came to this country by boat. A boat that was attacked by pirates and who stole what little she could bring with her. So she literally came to the U.S. with absolutely nothing.

I have to be honest that it took me years to convince her to come to dinner at Alexander's. I also have to be honest that even though Alexander's had time and again met my expectations, my sister and I were apprehensive that our mom would not enjoy herself.

When Mr. Clark dropped by our table, he didn't know any of what I've just told you. He did not know that the time he spent to make us laugh, the time he took to make my mom feel so incredibly special - that he was doing something so great for this woman's life. It was pure joy to watch our mom be so happy.

I've been lucky enough, because of the education that my parents gave me, to be able to experience some of the best restaurant service in the world. I've been pampered because it was their job and they all did it well. Mr. Clark's hospitality was on par to other experiences but his was slightly different... different because his effort seemed to come from himself. Not because it was his job (which I'm sure he excels at), but because he's a great guy.

So thank you for making him your General Manager. And thank you, Mr. Clark, for giving my mom such a beautiful birthday.


Beau took me here for NO REASON AT ALL!! Just a random Saturday. We went to go see the ducklings and goslings at the park and then he surprised me with Alexander's. I squee-d very much. Beau is a keeper.

Honestly, I don't want to wait for a special occasion before I come back. Alexander's is actually quite reasonable for what you get. Honestly, you can just order a cocktail and a steak and that's more than enough. At least, that's my reasoning so I can come here more often ...

+ Ruby Slipper cocktail was lychee+grapefruit win

+ Hamachi shots ... I have never, ever eaten raw fish in my life, but I finally gave in and did it at Alexander's. Long story short, I will probably not do it again. Heh. Unless there was truffle oil on it. I might be persuaded with truffle oil.

+ Corn panna cotta with a red pepper relish and a sriracha-spiked sauce ... not really a fan because I don't like cold soups. It was the amuse bouche.

+ I said I wasn't going to eat any bread, but their whipped butter and chives is the best whipped butter and chives in the universe. I just used the bread to carry the butter to my mouth.

+ Blood orange snow cone was refreshing and delicious. It was the palette cleanser.

+ My 20 oz. prime rib was ... well, 20 oz. is really, really big. Cooked to my liking (a perfectly pink medium), it came drenched in incredible au jus, and served with a not-too-strong creamed horseradish ... a steal at $39 (IMO) ... the beau ordered the Tomahawk, which was the biggest steak on the menu (it came still attached to its Flintstone-sized bone). Seared so that there was a nice, crunchy crust, it was served with a yummy reduced balsamic sauce. Enough to feed three people. Or two 6'4" guys.

Even though the Tomahawk was tasty and IMPRESSIVE, I liked the other rib eye better. It's a lot juicier.

+ Barbed Wire cocktail was made with strawberries and rhubarb ... it was really, really potent. I liked the Ruby Slipper better.

+ cherry cotton candy ... a perfect ending!

Tanya was our server this time and she surprised the beau and I with awesome chocolate chip cookies to take home. They were bite-sized, chewy, and adorable. Tanya was as good as it gets.

*contented sigh* (Thanks, bubba!)


Completely worth the $240 price tag.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS are extremely important. Since we had Michael Buble tix (hello, lover), we had 5:30PM dinner reservations, but were 10 minutes early. I was wondering if the doors were unlocked since they don't even open till 5:30. Well, it wasn't a problem. Not only did they let us in, but I felt like the entire restaurant was at our service. We made ourselves cozy on the plush leather chairs by the fireplace and busied ourselves by looking at the cocktails menu, admiring the different cuts of raw, dry aged beef, and people watching. Since we were their first and only customers at that time, it was people-who-worked-at-Alexander's watching. My first impression of Alexander's was quite pleasant. Everybody smiled at us, politely, but very importantly, not haughtily. Their steps and actions were muted, but with purpose and everywhere we walked, we were acknowledged and not ignored. There was a lot of nodding and slight bows - reminded me of Japan. Kudos to the half-Japanese chef on training his staff well. We didn't even have to lift a finger, the bartender came to us and then later, our drinks were delivered directly to our table. Which, I might add, was not too dimly lit (I'm not a fan of eating in the dark).

I had the BEST MOJITO I've ever had here, the day before yesterday. It was made with sake, a type of Japanese citrus, fresh huckleberries, and mint. Topped with shredded lime, lemon, and orange peels, it was very pretty. And tasted even better. Very light, refreshing, it was sweetened and colored from the huckleberries.

ANGIE was our waitress and I highly recommend her. She was super polite, professional, and friendly, without being overbearing or fake. I felt like I could quiz her on anything and she would be able to answer. We let her know about our time constraints and dinner was whisked to us at the perfect 1 hour and 45 minute pace. I wish we had more time though, because Angie was going to let me make my own cotton candy! Because I couldn't, she came bearing the mother of all cotton candies... it looked like one of Marie Antoniette's wigs! Twice the size of my head and all light orange and fluffy. It was DELICIOUS and non-artificial tastin'.

So now, I'm skipping my appetizer and amuse-bouche reviews to get to the main star of the show. The STEAKS:

I ordered the 2LB RIB EYE because I listen to Yelpers. It was KILLER. My most prized steak I've ever had ever. 4 people delivered our entrees to us. It was quite the procession. One person carried my Fred Flintstone size steak, the second person carried the bf's equally impressive porterhouse, the third carried a huge, heaping bowl of truffle mousse (omg, gold in a bowl), and the fourth person carried our decadent mac n' cheese laced with truffle oil.

Steakhouses should learn how to cook their steaks from Alexander's. Slow and steady is the process. Their medium was the definition of medium. Glazed with a smokey BBQ sauce that didn't hide the meat and roasted baby tomatoes... and when I stole a dollop (what a fun word) of the bf's truffle butter mousse concoction, it was sinful. Complete with bone and perfectly marbled it glistened.

AMUSE-BOUCHE #1 was me being a daredevil. I don't like raw meats and fish. It's a mental thing. But I sucked it up and thought "it's just like prosciutto" over and over again. It was a very thin slice of who knows how high quality beef. Sprinkled with basil-infused salt, and served with a side of fresh huckleberry jam and a pure coco vinaigrette - it was very delicate and the everything melded together remarkably. The salt added a crunch, and the coco and sweet huckleberry hid the scariness of the raw meat for me.

AMUSE-BOUCHE #2 was utterly delightful. It was honey jello served with a tangerine slice and topped with what tasted like a mustard sprout. It was such a happy, YUMMY dance in the mouth. I could've had a whole bowlful and been content.

We also ordered the raved about hamachi shots, the gazpacho (even though it tasted like really fresh salsa, I wouldn't order this again), and a $20 shot of PEAR-INFUSED APPLE BRANDY. It was smoooooth and I didn't make any "that tastes like gasoline" face. At Morton's, they roll out a cart of meat, vegetables, and a live n' kicking lobster for you. At Alexander's, it's a cart of after-dinner drinks - an array of fun bottles to look at. Alexander's wins.

At the end of the day, it was the perfect steakhouse.


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