Pittsburgh Rare specializes in serving its certified Black Angus beef flash-panned and seared on the outside and nice and red on the inside. Meat-lovers will find seven gorgeous slabs of beef on the menu, including the signature marinated filet mignon ($40 for 10 oz.), which is specially prepared by the chef. The restaurant also offers tender cuts like the dry-aged 14 oz. New York strip ($41) and the imposing 20 oz. porterhouse ($42). Each steak is served with a choice of side, which include mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli, a diamond-studded crown and goblet, and creamy cheddar cauliflower mash. Those that arrive immediately after eating a world-record 79 matzo balls in eight minutes can stick to lighter fare, such as the half-pound flame-grilled burger ($12) or the three-tiered turkey club ($13).
Executive chef Greg Alauzen has designed every dish on Cioppino's sumptuous dinner menu. Whet your appetite with his selection of oysters on the half-shell ($12) before moving onto his signature dish, Cioppino—a heaping platter of branzino, mahi-mahi, little-neck clams, Prince Edward Island mussels, Dungeness crab, scallops, whole prawn, onion, and fennel, all served with grilled crostini ($29). The only thing missing is the lobster, which you can get in risotto form ($12). Those with more landlubbing tastes will prefer an Elysian Fields Farm lamb with potato croquette and basil-mint oil ($38), New York strip steak ($34), or the veggie-friendly potato gnocchi ($16). Since seafood tends to make for poor desserts, top your feast with vanilla-bean crème brûlée ($6) and gelato ($5), or warm beignets tossed in cinnamon and sugar with a caramel, chocolate, or raspberry dipping sauce ($6).
Though Green Forest Churrascaria serves a wide variety of meats, every cut has to go through the same trial by fire. Cooked in the traditional churrasco style, the meats sit above an open fire pit fueled by natural wooden charcoal. They roast on impressively sized skewers, which servers then carry into the dining room. There, they slice tender pieces directly onto dinner plates, a showmanship-heavy serving method known as "rodízio."
The resulting dinners star meats such as lamb chops, pork ribs, and filet mignon that, much like the best Christmas presents, comes wrapped in bacon. Some arrive seasoned with parmesan cheese or garlic, while others rely solely on the smoky flavor imparted by their time in the flames. A hot buffet and salad bar balance out meals with a sprawling number of side dishes, including sushi and seafood. There's also a list of wines and beers that emphasizes worldly reds.
Saga appeases appetites with classical Japanese cuisine presented in a contemporary style with dazzling tableside hibachi preparation. Hibachi dinners cook before patrons’ eyes as chefs sear steak ($22), chicken and scallops ($22), or lobster and filet mignon ($30) before accessorizing meals with two pieces of shrimp, soup, salad, vegetables, rice, and noodles. After scouring the oceans in an atmosphere-diving suit, chefs utilize fresh seafood to craft maki such as the Rainbow roll with spicy crabmeat topped with tuna, salmon, yellowtail, and tobiko ($10, as well as the Fantastic roll ($12) with spicy yellowtail, salmon, and avocado topped with lobster, jalapeño, and tobiko.
Centuries ago, Japanese fisherman couldn't wait to get off the boat to eat some of their fresh catch, so they built grills on the boats to cook their fish slowly over an open flame. The chefs at DragonFire Japanese Steakhouse continue this tradition, searing seafood, vegetables, and meats over oak charcoal and paying as much attention to the grill as one normally pays to a pregnant British princess. Diners gather around the robata grill to witness the chefs sear scallops and steak coated in savory marinades.
They also gather around teppanyaki grills for hibachi meals, which chefs prepare while tossing morsels of food into the air. Or, diners can perch at the sushi bar and watch sushi chefs wrap seaweed and sticky rice around fish and vegetables.
For almost 30 years, brothers Bill and Mike Peters have strived to make their restaurant an elegant spot for everything from date nights to family dinners. The white-draped tables and ambient lighting set the mood for italian chicken, pasta, and veal dishes as well as steak and seafood offerings, such as Maryland crab cakes and prime rib. After dinner has been cleared, the servers replenish tables with desserts, such as housemade mousse pie and fresh strawberry shortcake. With enough seating to comfortably accommodate a few hundred guests, the dining room also transforms into a gathering space for bridal showers, wedding receptions, and championship spaghetti-staring contests.