Butcher & Singer is the latest in a crop of high end steakhouses to open in Philadelphia. Stephen Starr took the old location of Striped Bass and reworked it as a modern day steak and chop temple. The concept and the meal work in this corner location, once the home of Butcher & Singer brokerage.
I was looking forward to this meal and I had a few minutes to kill at the bar before my dinner companion arrived. The bloody mary I got was disappointing without much flavor (but a healthy amount of horseradish bits which I appreciated for texture).
After we were seated I took in the dining room. Nothing too impressive here (though I did enjoy the oversized classic looking chandeliers. I actually thought the theming, meant to capture the art deco styles of the 20’s and 30’s was not done very well.
Enough about the surrounding. How about the food? The food was superb.
Dinner began with warm, firm sourdough rolls delivered by a waiter using tongs (always a nice touch). A shrimp cocktail was four very large shrimp with a well done cocktail sauce. One of the house specialties, a fried oyster appetizer, topped with a light cream and caviar eggs served in shell. They were superbly done, lightly fried and bursting with flavor.
A Crab and Shrimp Louis salad was topped with avocado slices and accompanied by a remoulade sauce (the Louis in Crab Louis). A tomato and onion salad had firm, ripe tomatoes and was topped by a bleu cheese dressing that was tasty, but a little runny.
I wanted to order the Steak Diane, which is one of my favorite steak preparations (and one I miss terribly since Morton’s took it off the menu). The server, who was attentive and outstanding all night long, suggested the filet instead of the cut normally used for the Diane and he’d get the Diane sauce on the side. The 8 oz. filet was delicious as was the well done Diane sauce.
A ribeye steak was marbled throughout and melted in your mouth. Perfectly seasoned as well and a bernaise sauce with it appeared tasty.
The “stuffed hash brown” was selected as our potato. Chopped potatoes, onions, sour cream and chives were fried crisp on the outside and warm and tender on the inside. My mother even enjoyed the leftovers I shared with her the following evening. String beans amandine were crisp with a slight tinge of vinegar in the sauce making for a very tasty vegetable.
The meal was capped by two superb desserts. Ice cream was freshly made and served with biscotti. I ordered one of the house’s signature desserts: The Baked Alaska.
I have been a fan of this rarely found dessert since first trying it a decade ago and was anticipating it since I spied it on the menu. I was not disappointed. The individual sized meringue topped cake came with a perfect blend of ice cream encased inside. Each bite was enhanced by a ribbon of raspberry sauce throughout. It was heaven.
Overall the meal ranked extremely high and I would venture back. If you go soup to nuts as we did expect to pay between $80 and $100 per person. The burger at lunch is famous but I’ve not tried it. If you’re looking to save some dough and experience Butcher and Singer they are open for lunch on weekdays as well.
1500 Walnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19102-3523