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When you've reached a point in your life where you don't give a shit about money--say you've only got months to live or someone rich died and made you their heir--Mastro's is the place to go for steak. Only the sissies or those who realize they're in way over their heads order the chicken, and even that isn't cheap. Forget the salmon, forget the pork chop, forget everything else that doesn't go moo. Hunks of beef, bloody rare inside, crusted with black sooty char outside, is why you go to Mastro's. Sure, it'll cost an arm, a leg, and possibly, a spare kidney. Why worry now? Go for broke for the Australian wagyu ribeye that's served still attached to a bone as ridiculously large as the price is steep. It eats like a hundred dollar piece of steak should: effortless, sinew-free, every sanguine, tender piece you slice an affirmation that you're still alive and carnivorous. The sides? A la carte, of course. A few, like the lobster mashed potatoes will cost as much as a steak. But even a pauper should at least sacrifice a few hours' wage for the sugar snap peas. Expect a dimly lit room, excellent free bread, white tablecloths, hot towels, crumb scrapers, and a uniformed guy in the bathroom who expects to be tipped after he hands you a towel. Spring for the 1977 bottle of port for a cool $450. They'll need a ladder to retrieve it from the highest level of their floor-to-ceiling tower of bottles. And, what the heck, some caviar that costs more per ounce than cocaine. What have you got to lose but cash?
I think the Mastro's chain does a great job. They have Mastro's Ocean Club in different places – this one in Newport Beach and one in Scottsdale, AZ. The Mastro's in Beverly Hills is the first one I went to and now I’ve gone to different ones around the country. Mastro's just does a great job because of the aged beef and they have great sides. Also, it's a great atmosphere every time you go to any of them. I love to go to places and people watch because I’m used to so many people watching me because of what I did. Those are great places to watch people. I just get my back corner table and then I can check out all the scenes going on in the restaurant.
So we tapped Mastro's for this category last year, but that was Mastro's Steakhouse in Costa Mesa. Mastro's Ocean Club is in Crystal Cove, but it serves the same steaks (about $40) as its sister restaurant, identical down to its cell structure. Both are gold-brick-sized hunks of tender cattle served on plates as hot as the surface of the sun. What's different about the two is the crowd. At the Steakhouse, you'll see executives straight out of the board room—the lions of industry, if you will. At the Ocean Club, it's their wives, the cougars.
So we tapped Mastro's for this category last year, but that was Mastro's Steakhouse in Costa Mesa. Mastro's Ocean Club is in Crystal Cove, but it serves the same steaks (about $40) as its sister restaurant, identical down to its cell structure. Both are gold-brick-sized hunks of tender cattle served on plates as hot as the surface of the sun. What's different about the two is the crowd. At the Steakhouse, you'll see executives straight out of the board room--the... More »
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