Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse

Normally, I reserve meals at expensive steakhouses for a special occasion. However, we were able to score a great deal for Ruth’s Chris Steak House during their Gift Card promo which made a visit for regular date night, more reasonable. With over 140 Ruth’s Chris Steak Houses worldwide, mainly in the US, and 5 in Canada, their sizzling plates are well known. While service was lovely and the steaks were good, I wasn’t convinced they were as good as the price tags were high.

Atmosphere: The Toronto location of Ruth’s Chris was in the basement of the Hilton hotel. There was no natural light but plenty of overhead lamps provided a warm, cozy glow to the dining room. Each table was rotated offset from those around it, creating a private space even in the middle of the room. Perhaps a touch outdated, the decor still felt elegant and timeless, reminiscent of an old boy’s club or university alumni room. Plenty of masculinity. Many tables around us were from out of town or celebrating special events.

Service: All of the waitstaff who took care of us that night were professional and efficient. As soon as a drink was empty, someone was there asking if we needed another. Our steaks arrived sizzling (as promised) and sides were all served together. When we ordered only one salad, our server asked if we were splitting the dish and made sure it would be served as such. With each course we were offered fresh ground pepper and all together had a lovely experience.

Food: When ordering at Ruth’s Chris, potato ($12 each) and vegetable ($12 – $15 each) dishes are separate items. No sides were included with any entrees. Each side is a very generous portion and more than enough to share with two people.

As is our tradition, The Hubby and I ordered too much food. We started with one order of the Caesar salad, the dish was split into two portions and served individually. I found the leaves evenly dressed and my plate was covered with shaved parmesan. For sides, we ignored the vegetable selection and ordered both Shoestring Fries and Onion Rings. We managed to eat half of each, but wasn’t even close to finishing. The shoestring fries were fantastic, thin, crispy and well seasoned. I was eating these by the mouthful. The onion rings (not pictured) were massive, wider than my fist, crunchy and not oily.

For our mains, The Hubby ordered The Cowboy Ribeye steak and I had the regular Ribeye steak, both cooked to medium. My ribeye was a beautiful pink throughout. With the bone-in Cowboy, the steak was rarer closer to the bone as expected. Both had a delicious rendered fat cap and a charred exterior sealing in all the juices. The steaks were mildly seasoned and relied heavily on butter. This was a good quality steak, soft, tender with lots of meaty flavour. However, we’ve gotten pretty good at cooking steaks at home, which sets the bar higher when we’re eating out. I wasn’t blown away by Ruth’s Chris.

We ended the night with a slice of Cheesecake and Blueberry sauce, a sweet final note for an already indulgent meal.

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