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Del Frisco's exists for one reason and one reason only: to bring huge whacks of 100 percent American corn-fed beef to diners with big appetites and bigger wallets. A swank joint tinged with candlelight and cigar smoke (amid an air of DTC deal-making), Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steakhouse is thick with fat-cat atmosphere. Abundant dark wood and killer martinis give off a definite men's-club vibe, as does a price tag that's not for the faint of wallet. Jazz musicians perform every night except Sunday. If you come, bring your gold card, wear your best suit, and be prepared to eat like a cannibal in a room full of sharks.
Steakhouses are the 8th wonder of the world. They should have been included in Sound of Music’s song “My Favorite Things”. A lifetime supply of steak dinners should replace the medals in the Olympics. Now, this view might not scream out to you and Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House is okay with that. Located in the middle of the Denver Tech Center, with its sterling reputation rooted in Dallas since 1970, Del Frisco’s attracts the elite and discerning steak connoisseurs.
If driving by Del’s, as the regulars call it, nothing especially catches your eye. Del’s is a nice wood building right off I-25, with green accents and a typically small but premium assortment of cars in the parking lot. Walking in, you immediately get the sense that you are about to enjoy yourself. Or, quite possibly, that this restaurant could not be more wrong for you. A collection of young professionals, silver haired executives and local celebrities are being seated and waited on by a very skilled and attractive group of hostesses and waiters in black cocktail dresses or white shirts and black ties. A polished oak bar the width of the restaurant stands behind the hostess stand, with the dining room on the right and the cigar lounge on the left.
Del Frisco’s has stayed with this essential setup in all 10 of its nationwide locations, starting with its flagship and founding location in Dallas, Texas. The apparent mission statement of the small chain is “Do Right and Fear No Man” and their menu’s and service seem to strive constantly for that. As listed on their website, their foundational and most important element of the experience is their USDA Prime Beef, that is hand cut daily and anchored by flavorful side dishes, irresistible deserts and hand shaken martini’s.
The impression is unmistakable here, if you’re still at the restaurant, you’re salivating now, for good reason. You’re wallet is also screaming out for help, for good reason as well. A three-course meal for two with glasses of wine or cocktails can easily run north of two hundred dollars. That is, unless, you gather a group of 10 friends to go and take advantage of 5280 restaurant week in early February. This gift from the gods, allows you to enjoy the same three course meal as John Elway next to you, but for a mere fraction of the cost. With two cocktails and three courses, my check came out under forty dollars. Not a casual tab at all, but also not a casual experience by any means as well.
The first course was a choice between a fresh seafood gumbo or “Del’s Salad”. As delicious as the seafood sounded, I knew I would have plenty of protein coming up soon, so I went with the sensible option of the salad. Now given that it was a special, promotional week, they could have mailed in the salad with some greens and croutons swimming in Caesar dressing. They did not, and if not for the excellence of the steak, this quite possibility could have been the highlight of the meal. Fresh, long starks of lettuce with thin, big slices of parmesan lightly sauced with house made Caesar dressing did not stay on the plate for long.
The second course, the reason we were all there, was the entrée. Excuse me, I mean the steak. There were options of fresh Atlantic salmon and oven roasted chicken, which were glanced over before ultimately deciding between the Prime Ribeye or the Delmonico cut of steak. With my knowledge of steak and the certain cuts desperately lacking, I went with the best sounding one with the Prime Ribeye. As I attempt to describe the steak, it is ironic because there is nothing that stands out especially. As anticlimactic as that sounds, it actually makes it even better. The first slice of the steak is cooked absolutely perfectly, and acts as a vessel of culinary ecstasy from the first bite to the last. At which point my body and mind were torn, I had just transported on a dream like journey for the last 20 minutes and now it’s over. I had also just eaten sixteen ounces of Prime beef and am sorely regretting not wearing loose sweatpants to dinner. These emotions didn’t last long as the waiter showed up a moment later presenting us with the figurative cherry on top.
The third course, and since age 7, my favorite, was desert. How could it possibly top the historical epicurean sonnet that the second course had become? This wasn’t a fair matchup to begin with, but with the choices of New York cheesecake with fresh strawberries or chocolate mousse looming, I went with the standby favorite. Thinking it could possibly be too giant to even consider finishing, the mousse came in a perfect four ounce serving, delicately shaped into a triangle by thin slices of white and dark chocolate. My inner child was screaming for more desert, but my current body could not be happier that its limit had been quietly reached by the smaller portion.
To be quite honest, this has been the best dining experience that I, in my short tenure, had ever had. This also could possibly be matched by another five star steakhouse, making Del Frisco’s just a face in the steakhouse crowd. The X factor here is the cigar lounge. Once again, this is not something that you are typically on the fence about. You either relish the idea or think it should be federally banned. I, and four of our dinner party, extensively enjoyed it. A twelve hundred square foot room full of a small oak bar, leather couches, crystal cigar trays and a grand piano in the corner was definitely a place I could die happy.
The cocktail portion of the restaurant is taken to a new level in here. This is where the beautiful ladies in black cocktail dresses hand shake your martinis and astound you with their scotch and wine knowledge. An exceptional Frank Sinatra impersonator sings his hits to the tune of the piano and walks around the room while you are transported to a time and place that could unique to each person. I am typically a simple guy when it comes to my cocktails; a whiskey coke or gin and tonic are great standbys. Given the occasion, I decided to try something different and ordered their featured item, the V.I.P. martini. This might have been partially just because I enjoyed the name, Very Important Pineapple. Not a fan of fruity, overly sweet drinks, this could have gone horribly wrong. Instead, a present but light pineapple taste mixed perfectly with the Stolichnaya Elit vodka it had been infused with in a blast freezer. The drink quickly made the rounds to the others in the group, and more were ordered.
Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse is definitely a place to celebrate at, and some would say, for. I have not been back since Restaurant Week but have already made mental plans to visit once it rolls around in a few (hopefully) short months. Once again, this is a steakhouse. A prime example of one, if that doesn’t peak your interest, than there is very little chance that you will enjoy it as much as my friends and I did. If that does sound interesting, then break your piggy bank, pick up a newspaper route or sell your baseball cards, and find an occasion that calls for such an adventure. Either that, or just contact me, and we’ll start a countdown until early February where we can visit that wood building with the green accents and indulge in our own form of escapism, for less than the price of your cell phone bill.
It’s really good, and they take good care of us no matter how busy they are. The steaks and food are excellent. I love the side dishes, especially the creamed corn. I go with sautéed spinach for my vegetable.
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