A raw steak can reduce the swelling of a black eye just as easily as the charcoal markings of a well-cooked steak can draw it back on. Make artful use of cuisine with today’s Groupon to The Vintage Steakhouse in San Juan Capistrano. Choose between the following options:
- For $58, you get a four-course dinner for two, valid Sunday–Thursday (up to a $117.65 total value).
- For $63, you get a four-course dinner for two, valid on Friday or Saturday (up to a $117.65 total value).<p>
Dinner includes: * One shared appetizer (up to a $12.95 value) * Two soups or salads (up to a $10.95 value each) * Two entrees served with chef-selected vegetables and a choice of potato (up to a $28.95 value each) * Two desserts (up to a $7.50 value each) * Two coffees, teas, cappuccinos, or espressos (up to a $4.95 value each)<p>
At The Vintage Steakhouse, chefs craft a sumptuous menu of American fare paired with selections from a comprehensive wine list served in jewel-toned dining rooms. Prawns sautéed in Pernod or a pairing of charbroiled tomatoes and warm goat cheese offer tantalizing starters. For the next course, patrons choose between hearty soups and salads such as spinach tossed in warm bacon dressing and drizzled, like winning cage fighters, in cognac, or fresh baby greens and roma tomatoes dressed in an office-appropriate outfit of cabernet vinaigrette.
The mesquite-grilled new york steak with a mushroom cabernet demi-glace, cooked to order, sates even the most cavernous appetites, and Cajun beurre blanc tags along with the seared six-spice ahi tuna. Diners can finish with the peanut-butter crème brûlée, an offbeat confection with a caramelized crust, paired with a cozy cup of coffee, tea, espresso, or cappuccino.
The Vintage Steakhouse
From inside The Vintage Steakhouse, it would be easy to pretend that a passenger on the trains passing just outside the window is engrossed in a pristine early edition of The Sun Also Rises, smoke swirling off the Chesterfield perched absentmindedly between his fingers. Without much effort, you might conjure a woman in the bar car, gratefully sipping a Southside and sending up a wordless celebration of the reversal of Prohibition.
That’s because the restaurant resides inside the historic Capistrano Depot, which, despite its 1894 build date, bears an unmistakably art-deco vibe evocative of the 1920s or ‘30s. A trio of arched windows is the focal point of the main dining room; when trains aren’t sliding past their decoratively gridded glass, diners can peek through bougainvillea and willow trees to the 200-year-old adobes planted behind them. Inside, knotted wood planks run across the 18-foot ceilings, a near match to the hardwood floors glistening beneath.
A smaller dining room sits in the adjoining Dining Car, a fully restored 1927 Pullman train car upholstered in warm reds and golds. Candlelit tables for two line each side of the car, under which couples’ intertwined feet rest softly upon the regally patterned carpet. The ambience is a bit more social in the Chef’s Alley room, an 1887 freight house with its own cocktail bar and more contemporary décor.
No matter where parties choose to dine, they’re presented with a thoughtful menu of hand-cut steaks and seafood accented with local, organic produce. The chef prepares all dishes over an open-flame mesquite grill, giving everything a juicy, so-that’s-what-fire-tastes-like flavor. A chef’s selection of veggies and the patron’s choice of potato accompany the entrees, which range from filet mignon in a cabernet demi-glace to prawns sautéed in a sauvignon-blanc sauce.
These rich sauces pair perfectly with the more than 150 varietals that populate the restaurant’s wine list. Though heavy on French and Californian selections, the temperature-controlled wine cellar also has a few Spanish, Australian, and Italian bottles tucked away. Plus, the cellar stores a few cases of bubbly for the prix-fixe Sunday brunch’s bottomless champagne special, ensuring a festive follow-up to the smooth live jazz that plays every Friday and Saturday night.
26701 Verdugo St.
San Juan Capistrano, California 92675