Do you guys remember when Sizzler and Black Angus used to be the kings of steak and potato’s? If you wanted steak and shrimp with a baked potato those were the places you would go. Sizzler had that great cheese toast. I used to think there was crack in that cheese crust and I could never get enough of it. Sizzler has fallen a long way down. It was once a proud steak house where the people got together for a killer salad bar, great steaks and even great fried shrimp. Fresh baked potato’s covered in butter and sour cream made it the best all-you-can-eat joint around. Who doesn’t remember all you can eat night at the Sizzler?
The salad bar is a ghost of what it once was. Just iceberg lettuce, shredded carrots, and croutons, it now resembles the salad bar you’d find in a cheap pizza joint like Chuck E Cheese. Their steaks are equal to a Denny’s or Carrows, their once powerful cheese toast is under-cooked and under-seasoned. The fried shrimp and chicken is stringy and has all the life cooked out of it. Once a place of vibrant activity, (everyone from kids to adults used to be getting down on some great New York strip or top sirloin) now it’s the land of the blue hairs. The place is crawling with them, I should say rascling with them. (Rascals are those little automated carts they drive around.) It’s as if they took Sizzler and fast forwarded it a hundred years. The quality and service is gone, the old fogies have arrived, and a once powerful steak king has been killed. It is now where food goes to die.
So where is everyone getting their steaks? If any of you said Outback then you need to drive to my place so I can poke you in the eye with a spork. Outback is trendy and draws a great crowd, but it’s only a few years away from being Black Angus.
Us Venturians used to have the Hungry Hunter. It was one of the few places that you knew they truly cooked your steak to order. The service was great and the food was delicious.
Most steak houses give you the pre-cook treatment. Hungry Hunter cooked everything after you ordered it. But alas they closed their doors last September.
So what are we left with? Ruth’s Chris? Where you have to go to Bank of America first to get a second on your house so you can put a down payment on dinner. I’d have to put dinner on layaway and come in and eat every month or so while I made payments. No, my friends, that will not work. Best steaks or not, nobody should have to pay that much for dinner.
So raise your glass and bid farewell to the once proud steakhouse kings. Goodbye sweet Sizzler, alas your cheese toast has no hold on us. Farewell my friend Black Angus, your evil mental cowboy is no longer around to charm me and your coupons only deter me. Finally, Outback, you are the baseball player everyone knows is in the last year of his contract, one more year as an overpaid Yankee then you retire and become a staple of the blue hair menu.
The search will continue for a good, affordable, tasty cow house. Not fast food steak Outback! Good cooked to order, savory, juicy red meat. Caveman style with baked potatoes and fresh baked bread.