The DCK was better than the STK.
There is nothing wrong with that in and of itself. We’re huge duck fans, and Jenny’s order of duck breast with caramelized fennel, shallots and ginger confit was outstanding. But when the restaurant builds its name around the word, it needs to deliver a killer cut of steak. STK fell short in this regard. Our 20-ounce bone-in rib wasn’t terrible. It just wasn’t special. Again not to put too fine of a point on this, but if the name of your establishment is STK, you simply cannot allow other entrees to overshadow the quality of the red meat.
Perhaps the tipoff should have been the various steak sauces on the menu at $2 each. Hey, if you’re going to charge high-end steakhouse prices — the bone-in New York is $75 — the beef had better be perfectly seasoned when you put it on the plate in front of me. Extra for sauce? The nerve. It’s not the two bucks that bothers us. It is the idea behind it: We can slack on proper seasoning because we know these suckers will actually cover our lack of detail by coughing up extra for sauce. It’s like a car dealer charging extra for the keys.
In addition to the duck, the other highlight was an appetizer called Shrimp Rice Krispies, a tasty concoction of tiger prawns drenched in shrimp bisque with cilantro. This was a winner. But the dessert was a letdown. The server touted the bread pudding. We rarely turn down a chance to inhale every morsel of bread pudding, but this time we left half of it on our plate. Too much whipped cream. Most of all, though, the bread was hardly soaked with the stuff you need to soak it with. We would have panned this pudding anyway, but the intensity of our reaction was perhaps colored by an absolutely scrumptious version we enjoyed recently at Murano from just-departed Chef Kristi Richey. (Let’s hope they keep the same recipe on the menu there.)
Clearly STK is more sizzle than steak. We saw David Spade greeted by paparazzi on his way in. We caught a glimpse of Lions Gate CEO Jon Feltheimer inside with his wife. We heard Lauren Conrad was there as well with Chace Crawford. Perhaps they were attending one of the three birthday parties featuring gaggles of women dressed like they were auditioning for “Sex and the City, the Next Generation.” The parking attendant confirmed there were other celebrities in the house. He was unsure about names but repeatedly said, “Lots of blondes, lots of blondes.” We saw plenty of them in the bar. If you’re a single guy, this should be prime pickings. The steak here was not a 10, but some of the implant work was. — Victor.
STK, 755 N. LaCienega, Los Angeles, 90069. 310-659-3535.