Prime Steaks Are Still HOT!
By Alain Piraux Director of Food & Beverage, The Peabody Little Rock | November 13, 2011
Co-authored by Andre Poirot, Executive Chef, The Peabody Little Rock
In response to sophisticated guest tastes and their corresponding high expectations, USDA Prime steaks have been served in all Capriccio Grill Restaurants in all Peabody Hotels for many years. In each hotel, not only do hotel guests tell us how important quality meats are but the local community agrees as evidenced by a great mix of in-house capture rates and frequent patronage from locals. Guest feedback scores and commentary confirm the importance of this trend as guests continue to patronize restaurants where Prime steaks are served over those that do not focus as much on their meat quality.
After an extensive market research and customers focus group meetings years ago, the decision was made to change the concept of the restaurant. We all agreed that a Steakhouse would be the best fit for downtown Little Rock. But not just a Steakhouse, but the best of the best you can find in Arkansas.
First thing we had to do was to find the finest beef available in the market. You could be the best Chef in the world and you will not be able to make an average product taste great. So Chef Andre Poirot went on the road to benchmark all well-known and successful steakhouses in the country after which he contacted the top 10 US meat vendors and after several tastings of choice, Angus, prime and dry-aged meat cuts and quality tasting, the Chef and his team narrowed to two vendors for the final cut.
Prime beef and dry-aged beef were selected from one vendor for the highest quality meat with just enough but not too much fat, in order to provide the best taste and flavors during the cooking process. Even though the vendor had been selected, the executive chef still tries every piece of meat that he receives weekly to approve taste and quality before he gives it to the restaurant chef to prepare for the guests.
The Steakhouse concept turned out to be the right one as evidenced by increasing business volumes year over year and by the numerous accolades from the hotel guests, locals and the media. Even in a down economy, guests are still looking for a great quality steak usually accompanied by a great bottle of wine. We should probably make sure to define what we mean when we say "a great bottle of wine." A great bottle of wine is the wine that you like, so it does not really matter if you are told that you should have a full bodied red wine with intense red berry flavors with your Porterhouse. Yes, it does pair better with red meat, but if you like an oaky, buttery chardonnay, just go for it and enjoy!