Saturday, November 04, 2006

Morton's of Chicago, The Oriental

Morton's of Chicago, Mandarin Oriental
A very last minute impromptu dinner decision ended us up at Morton's. At Morton's, everything looked bigger and is bigger. This was actually our first visit to the famed steakhouse and the experience was decidedly pretty good.

Morton's of Chicago is located at the 4th storey of The Oriental hotel. The exterior of the hotel looked somewhat old, fading away through time. That was however a facade that belied the rather stoic and dark but simplistically stylish interior. Which was much like how Morton's facade from the entrance contrasted with the interior of the restaurant. The front of the restaurant looked serious and cold. The heart of it was however bustling with the clinks of knives, glassware and overflowing conversations of people; from hushed toned barely whispers of couples to semi-boisterous merry makers and even bawling kids. The air in the restaurant appear to be filled with the energy.

Being a newbie to Morton's meant we got a run through introduction of their steaks and the various cuts they come in. Our server for tonight was a lovely and amicable Tina which the lousy photo did not do any justice to. We were presented with a tray of steaks along with the bulk of the menu recited off the head by Tina like a litany. Was quite impressed because the menu was anything but small. The highlights of the introduction was of course, the steaks. You can guess from the photo on the right that they were anything but small with the 48oz double porterhouse cut being the king of the hill in the platter. We went with a porterhouse and a double cut filet mignon to share with a bunch of other items on the side.

The dinner started shortly with the much heard about onion loaf. The loaf was pretty huge, and warm. Really, look at how tiny the steak fork looks compared to the bread. The onion flavour in the loaf was light, just enough to be detected. I was actually expecting something that was blooming with fragrance once you pop it into your mouth. But that's not how it turned out. Not overpowering. What we liked about the loaf was that it arrived crisp and it's warm. So it went very well with butter. A small caveat lector for you readers. Don't finish it. The steaks are big, especially if you're doing a one on one.

Tailing the onion loaf was our order of a bottle of Pellegrino Liter (it's just sparkling water) and shortly after that, the sides we picked to accompany the steaks. Orders of steak just gets you steak on your plate. There are no accompanying sides. So if you want something else along with the meat, you have to order them separately.

The sides which we had were the sautéed wild mushrooms, hash brown potatoes and steamed broccoli with Hollandaise.

sautéed wild mushrooms

Hash,brown potatoes topped with bacon bits and sour cream 

Steamed broccoli

I'm just going through briefly with the sides. The sautéed wild mushrooms were quite good. It wasn't too mushroomy for me. The bed of mushrooms were actually piled over a toasted thick slice of garlic bread which isn't visible the photo above. The hash brown potatoes were like a thick rosti. The sides of were crispy with the inner parts greasy. It was actually better than what I had expected for hash browns. Broccoli was big and very fresh.

And the highlights of dinner, the steaks....

a very good double cut filet mignon

 not so good porterhouse steak

The juicy filet mignon bites the dust.

Porterhouse takes 2d4 damage

Halfway through my first helping

" the second without end..."

"The third arrives..."

The filet mignon I felt was the better of the two steaks. Succulent, juicy, aromatic. The exterior of the steak's surface was flavourful from the grill while the insides of the meat were a pink medium rare. The porterhouse steak wasn't impressive. At least it wasn't in my opinion. The toploin portion had a hard exterior and certain parts of the meats were more rare than medium, visibly with sinews. 

Off to the desserts, we had the signature chocolate cake from Morton's and the Upside Down apple pie.

Chocolate cake. Came with a slightly crusty exterior that encapsulated warmer soft insides and molten chocolate which erupts from the centre when you cut it. Enjoyed this rich hot chocolate treat. For some, it might be even described as orgasmic. Heh! Try it for yourself. Words cannot describe everything about taste. For those who aren't big on chocolate or sweets, refrain from ordering one because this large but single portion sets you back at $23.50.

This quaint looking lump was the upside down apple pie and it's probably one of the best apple pies I've had. The apple pieces were tart which offset the sweetness of the dessert. There was also crunch in the cooked apples. The generous amount of raisins in the pie was apparent in each bite with "succulent" dried grapes that burst in between your teeth. Morton's doesn't have a large variety of desserts but it seemed from what we've had so far, they're pretty good.


Anonymous said...

the brocoli looks really pretty

LiquidShaDow said...

Lol....okays, the total bill with the ++ comes up to $315.85. That's for 3 and no appetizers nor wine. ;)