Though chef Daniel Nemec specialized in classic French cuisine at the Texas Culinary Academy, his heart lies in the smokehouse. As the leader of Woodfire Kirby’s kitchen, he draws from his experiences growing up in Corpus Christi, where steaks and barbecue pepper the culinary landscape and are considered legal tender.
Nemec imbues hickory flavor in ribs, chops, and sirloin burgers, but demonstrates the wood’s versatility with a menu that also includes wood-fired soups and thin-crust pizzas. New york strip steaks and blue-ribbon fillets are cooked to a choice of six temperatures, including classic medium rare and charred-yet-red pittsburgh. Available raw, grilled, or poached, seafood showcases spices that range from asian to argentine to creole.
A private room welcomes up to 48 visitors with a high-definition TV and four banquet menus, and the dining room attracts nighttime guests with handcrafted cocktails and a buzz as vibrant as a birthday party inside a hornet nest.
For a no-holds-barred meat fest, carnivores with a serious appetite should look no further than Texas de Brazil. Overlooking the scenic Katy Trail, this Brazilian steakhouse is grandly outfitted with intricate iron chandeliers, huge gilded mirrors and white tablecloths, plus a stately wine room offering plenty of big reds to pair with all that protein. Flip your coaster to the green side and a procession of friendly servers parading around various cuts of meat like leg of lamb, Brazilian sausage, filet mignon and the ever-popular garlic-marinated top sirloin known as picanha will slice their wares directly onto your plate, until you cry uncle by turning your coaster to red. Surprisingly, vegetarians will find plenty to like here too, thanks to a high-end salad bar offering items like hearts of palm, thick steamed asparagus, grilled Portobellos, imported cheeses and even sushi.
For a classic steakhouse dinner that’s guaranteed to impress your boss, your family or a first date, look no further than Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille in Dallas. Art Deco chandeliers, a wall of wine bottles – more than 5,000 in all – and plush carpeting scream Uptown swank, while the effortlessly amiable staff provide tips and tricks for navigating the menu. Start off with ahi tuna tartare served with wonton crisps, or the signature fried asparagus: crispy spears crowned with jumbo lump crab. While freshly-cut prime steaks – including an impressive-looking bone-in cowboy ribeye – are obviously the centerpiece at this upscale eatery, many folks opt for the massive pork chop, carved tableside and flanked with housemade applesauce. Whichever way you go, lobster mac ‘n’ cheese and au gratin potatoes with a crispy browned top make worthy accompaniments.