Thursday, January 9, 2014

Holiday Ugly Sweater Party 2013: Outback Steakhouse

Starting a couple of years ago, my friends and I have a holiday ugly sweater dinner together. We usually pick a chain restaurant and subject ourselves to terrible food. This year, we picked Outback Steakhouse. Let the gut bombing commence.
First, what's a meal at Outback without a Bloomin' Onion. At almost 2000 calories (1500 from fat) and 4000 mg of sodium, this appetizer is a brick in the stomach. A large onion that is sliced into wedges then battered and fried until crispy and browned. You can taste the salt, spices, and oil. The accompanying sauce is just another bucket of fat. The Bloomin' Onion was invented to please and be addictive. It certainly did that.

The other appetizer that we ordered was the special short rib nachos. This was a huge disappointment. First, it wasn't nachos using tortilla chips. Instead, it was potato chips. The sloppily topped them with cheese sauce and shredded short rib. The chips got incredibly soft, the cheese sauce tasted like a cheese product, and the short rib was dry. Altogether, a terrible dish.
For dinner, I customized my steak experience. At least that's what they call it. I choose my cut of steak, a salad, and a side. For my salad, I had the house salad with mustard vinaigrette. This salad actually wasn't that bad. The vegetables were fresh and lightly dressed. I could have gone without the cheese and croutons though. You would think those were the best parts but in fact they added nothing but calories.
For my steak, I chose the 9 ounce Outback Special which is a sirloin. I ordered it medium rare. It was cooked to my specification but it was still very chewy. I attributed this sinewy, chewy piece of meat to the quality of the actual protein. The side of grilled asparagus was passable though they could have trimmed the ends more. Some pieces were inedible.
Overall, I received just what I expected from Outback Steakhouse. The quality of the food was subpar start to finish. Service was friendly but off. We sat around without cutlery for awhile and it was difficult to get a hold of our waitress for anything. I really don't have to say that this is a pass, do it?

Outback Steakhouse
60 W 23rd St
New York, NY 10010
(212) 989-3122
outback.com

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