October 20, 2006: To satisfy my weekly steakhouse craving, I returned yesterday to Nebraska Steakhouse, mainly because I knew I could eat at the bar and watch the Mets game. Since my original report, I’ve been there a couple of times. All the steaks are competently prepared, but still nothing beats “The Steak,” 32 ounces of ribeye heaven.
The tables, which never seem to be full, are served by a waitstaff right out of central casting. But nowadays I usually dine at the bar, which is staffed exclusively by buxom barmaids in low-cut blouses, all of whom are from Romania. The most striking of the bunch is dressed like an advertisement for breast implants, and it turns out she owns the place. She started as a bartender, and bought the restaurant a year and a half ago. Her husband is a specialist at the stock exchange, so I have a pretty good guess where the money came from.
Last night’s crowd was in a festive mood. I stayed long past dinner and drank with a couple from Australia. They ordered the chili, which is prepared with chunks of filet mignon and comes with sour cream, cheese, and chives on the side — an impressive production that looks to be well worth ordering on a future visit.
The restaurant is still open only on weekdays, although the owner told me she plans to start a Saturday service in November. With Lower Manhattan enjoying a mini-renaissance, her exuberance is understandable. But Nebraska Beef is well off the beaten path, and unless it starts advertising (it doesn’t even have a website), it’s hard to see how the weekend traffic will find it.
Maybe I’ll drop by in a couple of months for an order of the chili, and see how it’s going.
April 18, 2007: Rather than post a new review, I’m just updating my last report. I did indeed return a month or two later for the chilli (described above), which was as good as it sounds. And last night, I paid a return visit for another helping of The Steak. The marbling this time was more uneven than I remembered it, although it is still one of the largest ribeyes in town. They seem to have hired yet another barmaid with large breast implants.
I’m changing my rating from 1½ stars to one star, not because I am any less enthusiastic, but simply because the earlier rating was out of whack. I will remind readers that one star means “good,” and is by no means a knock against the restaurant.
Nebraska Steakhouse (15 Stone Street between Broad and Whitehall Streets, Financial District)