New York is a carne-loving town—just look at the city’s best BBQ, best butcher shops and best cheap burgers for proof. But one area we truly excel in is steakhouses and steak restaurants, those temples of dry age and mineral funk, those celebratory confabs that demand to be marked with a napkin tucked beneath your chin, a steak knife clutched in your fist and a juicy slab of beef in a pool of its own juices on your plate. From old classics that peddle in porterhouse to new-wave meateries where you can get your sirloin with a side of gnocchi, these are the best steakhouses in NYC.
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Best steakhouse in NYC
What is it? This 130-year-old slice of history serves sirloin and porterhouse (for two and three) that hold their own against any steak in the city.
Why go? Dine like one of Keens' famous regulars from decades past, such as Babe Ruth, J.P. Morgan and Teddy Roosevelt, whose smoking pipes adorn the ceiling and walls.
What is it? Although a slew of Luger copycats have prospered in NYC, none have captured the elusive charm of this stucco-walled, beer-hall-style eatery, with its well-worn wooden floors and tables, and waiters in waistcoats and bowties.
Why go? The famous porterhouse for two—36 ounces of sliced prime beef—is a singular New York experience that’s worth having.
What is it? A sleek, marble-washed Korean beef house from Michelin-starred restaurateur Simon Kim (Piora) in Flatiron, just 10 blocks south of K-Town proper.
Why go?Chef David Shim (M. Wells Steakhouse, Kristalbelli) tricks out steakhouse standards like shrimp cocktail with gochujang-spiked tartar sauce, and studs the steak tartare with cubes of Asian pear. Bring your besties for the Butcher’s Feast, a flashy spread of seasonal banchan, two stews (sour kimchi, fermented soy-tofu) and a daily-changing rotation of four steaks fired on gold-rimmed table grills.
What is it? A former mob hangout, this classic chophouse slings lean 16-ounce prime sirloins, savory beef scaloppine and steak fromage (filet mignon topped with Roquefort).
Why go? When your fork slides through a velvety wedge of chocolate mousse cake, you’ll feel sorry for Gambino crime boss Paul Castellano, who was famously whacked as he approached the entrance in 1985. He died before enjoying his last good meal.
What is it? This mustily masculine beef house opened in 1927 and boasts a glass-enclosed street-side meat locker loaded with dry-aged steaks later flamed the old-fashioned way — over a hicory-log grill.
Why go? The 52nd Street locker is a glorified landmark in Midtown, with locals and tourists flocking outside the century-old establishment for commemorative selfies after conquering their rib-eyes and marbled sirloins.
What is it? Michael Stillman, the son of Smith & Wollensky founder Alan Stillman, runs this highly stylized industrial theme park complete with meat-hook light fixtures, wooden butcher blocks, white tiles and exposed brick.
Why go? Lespinasse-trained chef Craig Koketsu nails the steaks but he also breathes new life into traditional side dishes: pudding-like corn crème brûlée and airy “gnocchi & cheese,” a clever take on mac and cheese, are worth the trip alone.
What is it? Strip House cultivates a retro-sexy vibe with its suggestive name, red furnishings and vintage pinups. But it’s still a modern meat shrine flaunting French influences.
Why go? The kitchen makes sure the New York strips arrive at your table still sizzling, seasoned with sea salt and peppercorns, and showing no sign of extraneous fat. Everyone will enjoy the black-truffle creamed spinach, one of several gourmet takes on classic steak sides, but it's the towering signature 24-layer chocolate cake that really steals the show here.
What is it? A gamble fom Wolfgang Zwiener, a former Peter Luger waiter who opened his own steakhouse in midtown in 2004 and later created an offshoot of his original offshoot. And yet it remains one of the best (albeit priciest) restaurants of its ilk.
Why go? The steaks kick ass — thick, juicy and perfectly charred. Big groups can order porterhouses for two, and solo diners can dig into a filet mignon, rib eye or sirloin without feeling like they’re getting second-best.
What is it? Opened in 1868 as a dockworkers’ chophouse, this clubby establishment draws a laid-back New York crowd (MePa’s glamazons need not apply).
Why go? Tender-as-sashimi seared yellowfin tuna and ever-fresh raw-bar selections shine on the menu, but the real star is the beef. Spring for the flavorful strip steak or a well-seasoned prime rib. Any way you carve it, this place stands the test of time.
What is it? At this old-school chophouse equipped with a 50-foot marble bar, dark yellow leather chairs and beige wallpapper, Peter Luger alums dole out seafood alongside meaty specialties.
Why go? The multi-unit chain is famous for its dry-aged steaks (filet mignon, prime rib) and Wagyu offerings, as well as decadent sides like truffled mac and cheese and a fried mozzarella and tomato salad.
Venue says USDA Prime Dry–Aged Porterhouse steak, exceptional seafood, and 400 plus wine list, in a beautiful surrounding with exceptional service
What is it? Situated in a low-ceiling basement reminiscent of a 1970s rec room, this Eastern European restaurant schills a very traditional menu of chopped chicken liver, garlicky karnatzlach sausage, broiled sweetbreads, and Roumanian tenderloin.
Why go? On a crowded night (as they often are), the LES rathskeller resembles a raucous and joyful bar mitzvah: Yiddish sing-alongs and folk dancing are ignited by the live synthesizer and further fueled by icy shots of vodka. Sammy's is always a damn good time.
What is it? This restaurant from chef Michael Lomonaco (Windows on the World) is part of the all-star lineup at the Time Warner Center with a mature-yet-sexy brown-and-tan interior and generous portions at fair prices.
Why go? The menu riffs on the restaurant's namesake bone-in cut: you can get a veal, pork, lamb or monkfish porterhouse if you like. Pair one of the gloriously charred steaks with one of the 500 wine labels on offer.
What is it? This veggie-leaning eatery explores grilling's greaseless, flame-licked potential with a well-rounded menu that combines Mediterranean, Asian and all-American flavors — from smoky slabs of halloumi to miniature fire-roasted eggplants with fried goat cheese and honey.
Why go? Main-event proteins include a charred hanger packed with an earthy flavor, as fine a slab of beef as is available at any hoary steakhouse in town.
What is it? A spin-off of the Atlantic City original, this playpen for high-rolling carnivores is suffused with wafting scents of singed fat and smoke-laced bourbon. Burnished rosewood tables big enough for a poker game await hedge-funders eager to go all in on beef and booze.
Why go? The menu caters to lily gilding, inviting you to top any of its wet- or dry-aged steaks with bacon, foie gras or an entire Singapore-style lobster. If you’re keen on embellishments, you’ll want the bone-in rib eye that’s Katz-ified into a smoky, spice-crusted pastrami steak topped with caraway butter.
What is it? A former auto-body garage, the 3,000-square-foot chophouse is divided into a catamaran-building factory and a carne-centric eatery equipped with a wood-fired grill. Meaty offerings include veal-chop marsala and steak topped with sashimi-thin slices of kobe beef, but the seafood (fresh trout swim in a concrete tank in the dining room) and salad plates are just as dazzling.
Why go? More intimate and warm than most meat temples, it’s a place where both bearded Brooklynites and Queens musclemen happily wield steak knives. And the seafood shines
This new LES hot spot from Northern Tiger’s Erika Chou offers home-style Thai dishes prepared by Chef Tom Naumsuwan like nam prik and sautéed morning glory, inspired by his growing up in Bangkok but one of their New York strip steak with tamarind sauce makes it one of the best in the city.
What is it? Making an effort to distance itself from the he-man confines of machismo steakhouse lineage, Bowery Meat Company touts itself as a "meatcentric restaurant" and raw bar. Servers hoist wooden boards of raw meat around the mildly mid-century room to tantalize diners with three-figure côte de boeuf.
Why go? The house specialty steak and Amish veal chop are much more mildly priced (about $50) than their hulking counterparts, so you'll get more meat for your buck. Be wary of the overpriced sides (like a $25 single deviled egg), though.