In Town To Promote Angies New Film The Couple Opts For A Three
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie may be among the wealthiest couples in Hollywood, but that doesnt mean they dont know a good dining deal when they see one. In Washington last night to promote Angies new film, In the Land of Blood and Honey, the couple and their coterie had dinner at Charlie Palmer Steak DC, where, according to a restaurant rep, both stars opted for chef Matt Hills Restaurant Week menu. They started with a chopped salad. Brad had the sirloin, and Angelina had the chicken. He had a chocolate pavé, and she had no dessert.
Check out Carol Ross Joynts write-up on partying with Brad and Ang over on the Capital Comment blog. It seems Brad gave her a high five. Lucky lady.
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THE ESSENTIAL NAPA VALLEY COOKBOOK
Boutique At Home Dining
For years weve been asked to bring the experience of Aureole to our guests’ private homes. Aureole at Home offers boutique-style take-out, an extensive wine list and craft cocktails. And for those looking to entertain, let us host your next cocktail or dinner party, including everything needed for the perfect Aureole experience: a private chef, customized menu, china, glassware, cutlery and service staff.
I started Aureole with the belief that American fine dining and hospitality should constantly be evolving and progressing.
Moving through these uncertain times and a changing industry landscape, we remain dedicated to offering our loyal patrons the very best in American cuisine and service and for now that’s Aureole at Home.
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You Can Cook The Restaurant’s Renowned Steaks At Home
For those lucky enough to live in the vicinity of one of the steakhouse’s locations in New York, Reno, Napa, or Washington, D.C., you can taste the brand’s wide-ranging, flavorful menu for yourself. But if you live elsewhere, you might be wondering how you can experience Charlie Palmer Steak, too. If you have some talent in the kitchen, you could take a stab at making steak in the comfort of your own home, following a few tips the James Beard Award-winning chef gave to Esquire.
It doesn’t sound like you need to be a Michelin-starred chef to whip up a juicy hunk of steak, either Palmer’s instructions are clear and easy-to-follow. So why not give it a try? If you’re interested in the chef’s recipes beyond steak, you’re also in luck. Palmer is the author of several cookbooks that focus on a wide variety of topics, from the chef’s signature “progressive American” cuisine and comfort foods to recipes specifically from his Aureole restaurant and outdoor, campfire recipes.
The Restaurant Concept Deviates From Traditional Steakhouses
The American steakhouse tends to bring to mind an image that recalls the hit TV show “Mad Men,” with high-powered businessmen in suits hashing out deals over humongous slabs of meat. Historically, steakhouses have been male-dominated venues that didn’t start to open up to women until around the 1920s when women got the right to vote . But even if women were technically allowed in chophouses that didn’t mean women necessarily felt welcomed.
That’s why Charlie Palmer sought to build a new kind of steakhouse where women could feel comfortable, too. “I didn’t want the restaurant to be this men’s club, he-man, bang on the table kind of place,” Palmer told Eater. This ambition is reflected in the steakhouse design, which favors a neutral color palette and bright lighting over traditional fixtures of men’s club, such as dark wood and dim lighting. Palmer also set out to empower diners with choices beyond steak, especially since modern Americans have started to consume less and less red meat. Plus, the menu at Charlie Palmer Steak makes it easier for diners to mix and match dishes, according to the company website, which ensures everyone is satisfied by the time the check arrives.
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Bold American Style In Capitol Hill
Charlie Palmer Steak Washington, DC, located in the United Brotherhood of Carpenters building, is dedicated to another fine master craft: bold American food. Under the direction of Executive Chef Ricardo Delacruz, the menu not only stars the best American artisan beef cuts like a Prime Dry-Aged Porterhouse for Two, but updated locally sourced seafood dishes, like Chesapeake Bay Oysters and Crab Cakes.
Much more than a steakhouse, the timelessly stylish restaurant moves the political power meetings out of the back room and into private dining spaces, sleek enclaves of dark wood. Located off the wide, open expanse of the National Mall, Charlie Palmers Steaks rooftop terrace can accommodate 400 guests for private events, offering the citys most impressive view of the Capitol.
Charlie Palmer Steak Washington DC houses a stylish presentation of more than 6,000 bottles in a floating glass wine cube, a centerpiece of the restaurant, perched just outside of the US Capital.
With more than 500 selections of predominantly American wines, as well as carefully curated international offerings, our extensive wine list has been honored with the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence. Much of our list is composed of quality boutique winemakers from all over the world, many with very limited production.
Charlie Palmer Steak Napa
The first Charlie Palmer Steakhouse in California has landed in Napa, and since a three-course dinner for $46 is less than the cost of a steak off their usual menu, this is a great chance to beef up on a budget. For restaurant week, the highbrow steakhouse is also offering the $20 lunch deal , plus bottomless wine pairings for an extra $17. Choose from three options for each course, like American Wagyu beef meatballs for a starter, grilled tri-tip steak for the main and Earl Grey panna cotta for dessert. You might as well also book a room upstairs at the brand new Archer Hotel theyve got introductory rates as low as $199 so that you can sleep off the ensuing food coma in style, with views of downtown Napa.
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The Seafood Is Actually Better Than The Steak
The notion that the steak at a steakhouse is actually inferior to other entrée options might leave you scratching your head, but it’s the truth. However, this isn’t some kind of culinary mishap. In fact, this was the chef’s intention behind Charlie Palmer Steak from the very beginning. According to Open Table, the chef-slash-business owner wanted to create a steakhouse where seafood dishes, salads, and starters weren’t merely afterthoughts but instead just as carefully crafted and tasty as its slabs of beef. Palmer’s philosophy has apparently paid off. Even as other big-name steakhouses have struggled to stay relevant, Charlie Palmer Steak has had no issue attracting customers and has even managed to expand, with four locations in major cities .
Mashed recommends their spate of seafood offerings, such as the steakhouse’s Yellowfin Tuna Tartare, Citrus Marinated Wild Baja Prawns, Stuffed Maine Lobster, and Halibut. But if you can’t resist the idea of cutting into a hunk of beef, be sure to garnish it with one of the restaurant’s sauces since the steak may be underwhelming in terms of flavor without it.
Charlie Palmer’s Childhood Influenced His Culinary Style
Once upon a time, in a small dairy farming town in upstate New York called Smyrna, Charlie Palmer realized his love for farm-fresh food early on in life while working in his family’s vegetable garden. Having an appreciation for agriculture instilled in him as a child strongly influenced him as a chef, Palmer told Grape Collective in a 2019 interview: “Understanding where something comes from, whether you’re raising it or growing it. I think that’s an advantage, at least I’ve always thought that way.” Palmer knew he wanted to be a chef as young as 15 years old, so he started working in restaurants in high school as a dishwasher and eventually a prep cook. Palmer also enrolled in his high school’s home economics class on a dare, which motivated him to pursue a career in the culinary arts, too.
Given his upbringing, it’s no surprise that Palmer was one of the first advocates for farm-to-table dining. In 1988, Palmer decided to craft menus that spotlighted regionally sourced ingredients, a pioneering decision at the time since this was long before such practices were adopted by the broader restaurant industry. Palmer’s ingenuity apparently paid off. His critically acclaimed New York restaurant Aureole earned 13 Michelin stars and two James Beard awards in its 30-year history. Palmer also oversees his own empire of hotels and restaurants called Charlie Palmer Group, including the brand’s acclaimed steakhouse, all of which are dedicated to fresh ingredients.
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Open a mere eight months, ALBA remains one of Napas best-kept secrets. At the River Terrace Inn along the Napa River, dine by cozy fire pits on whats arguably the best outdoor patio in all of Napa, featuring live music from top local bands on the weekends. For $36, ALBAs three-course dinner will start with a choice of porcini mushroom bisque or a beet salad. Decide between a grilled pork chop with kabocha squash or a grilled veggie caponata for the main, and round it all out with something delightfully unexpected: homemade Key Lime Pie with a graham cracker and macadamia nut crust. For an extra $14, youll get two wine pairings, but their original craft cocktails are tough to pass by, like the Valley Heat .
Known for training some of the worlds top chefs, its a safe bet that the Culinary Institute of America can whip up a killer meal. Located at the institutes new downtown Napa campus, The Restaurant at CIA Copia is adding on a bonus course to both its lunch and dinner Restaurant Week menus. The $20 three-course lunch will feature a simple salad, a housemade pappardelle with mushrooms and sherry cream and then tiramisu for dessert. The $46 four-course dinner gives you a choice for each course. Will you order spicy mussels or Italian staple cacio e pepe? Fishermans Stew or vinegar-braised chicken? Tip: Bring a friend, and you can try it all.
The Charlie Palmer Steak Philosophy
We are rooted in the pursuit of the best ingredients and a simplistic approach in the kitchen, striving to find and support as many small, artisan and local producers as possible. With flavor and quality of paramount importance, great produce, poultry, fish, and of course, steaks, are delivered every day from those sources to your table.
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Large Cuts for Two
Each week, Tuesday-Thursday we feature a special Large Cuts for Two selection that are perfect for sharing.
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Charlie Palmer Is Constantly Reinventing His Business Model
You don’t get as far as Charlie Palmer has in his roughly 40-year-old culinary career without possessing a flair for innovation. Starting with his signature progressive American cuisine, Palmer has been a trailblazer in the restaurant industry since he was made River Cafe’s executive chef in 1983 . In fact, in a 2013 interview with Crain’s New York Business, Palmer said the key to his entrepreneurial success was his ability to be “always looking forward on how to improve on what we’ve done before and to never do something the same way twice.” That talent has certainly come in handy during the pandemic.
After shutting down the brick-and-mortar operations of his Aureole restaurant location, Palmer rebranded it to Aureole at Home, a customized home-dining service that boasts high-end take-out and a specialty wine list and cocktails. While Palmer admitted to Zagat it wasn’t a money-making machine, it was the right thing to do to keep staff members employed. Palmer also said his restaurant business has capitalized on outdoor dining mandates and to-go alcohol during Covid-19.
Acacia House By Chris Cosentino
Also new to Napa Valley in the last year is Acacia House by chef Chris Cosentino , housed in a beautifully-refurbished, Georgian-style mansion built in 1907. Acacia House has designed seafood-inspired Restaurant Week menus with warm winter vibes, like a lobster bisque and oxtail toast topped with house-made ricotta for lunch. For dinner , start with a salt cod brandade, followed by Hokkaido scallop with mushroom risotto and then a tre leches cake with cinnamon ice cream for dessert. If you have some extra cash to spend, order their heavenly margarita topped with a salty pillow of seafoam.
Last summer, chef Christopher Kostow opened The Charter Oak in St. Helena, a significantly more approachable and elemental dining experience than his posh post at The Restaurant at Meadowood. Free of pretension, its a great spot for a semi-casual lunch with friends and during Restaurant Week, The Charter Oak is offering their Family Luncha rotating pre-set menu thats meant to be shared with the entire tablefor $20 per person , with optional wine pairings. The uber seasonal-driven menu wont be finalized until that week, but some past family meal favorites include pork shank with squash and chorizo-stuffed peppers and a slow-cooked, then fried chicken confit with a brown butter potato puree.
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The Steakhouse Has A Secret Menu
As if there wasn’t enough already to like about Charlie Palmer Steak, the chain of luxury chophouses also has another feature to entice diners: a secret menu. And not only is it delicious, at $58 per person, it’s also a bargain considering all that’s included. So, how do you take advantage of the secret menu?
Apparently, all you have to do is ask your server for the “cut of the week.” Don’t be fooled by the name the secret menu isn’t just a single item but a whole three-course dinner, including a salad, entrée, side dishes, and dessert. The menu is seasonal and rotates on a weekly basis, and it’s also only available to people who dine in-person at one of the steakhouse’s restaurant locations. In the past, the secret menu has spotlighted a Thai salad to start, a petit ribeye, sides of cauliflower fried rice and sweet corn, and sorbet for dessert. The secret menu also includes unlimited wine pairings. You definitely can’t go wrong here.
Palmer’s Son Is Getting Into The Family Business
Young chefs aren’t the only ones Charlie Palmer has influenced throughout his career. The award-winning chef and restaurateur has passed the chef’s hat to his youngest son Reed, who recently graduated from Cornell . As Palmer worked to reopen the D.C. location of Charlie Palmer Steak and his New York rooftop bar called St. Cloud after shutting down during the height of the pandemic, Reed has pitched in to help with both reopenings. Palmer’s love for sharing cooking with his family had a strong influence on Reed as a child. “Some of my best memories are in the kitchen next to my dad,” Reed told The Press Democrat in 2015. “I like just learning from him and spending as much time with him as I can.”
Family and food have always been inextricably linked for Palmer, whose cookbook “Charlie Palmer’s American Fare: Everyday Recipes from My Kitchens to Yours” includes a chapter dedicated to family-favorite recipes. Included is a recipe called Reed’s Bruschetta, an appetizer inspired by his son’s dislike of raw tomatoes.
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At Charlie Palmer Power Lunch Without The Price
Its lunchtime at Charlie Palmer Steak, and a sea of dark suits fills the Capitol Hill restaurants elegantly modern dining room. Necks crane to see who might be seated at the next table, and Members of Congress hold important meetings in back rooms.
It is a stereotypical Washington scene, and most diners probably arent concerned with the menu prices. But that doesnt mean you need an expense account to lunch among the movers and shakers.
Inspired by the Restaurant Week deals offered in New York City and Washington several times a year, Charlie Palmer Steak offers a three-course lunch on weekdays for $20.05 all year round. Considering most lunch entrées on the regular menu exceed $20 alone , its quite a bargain.
Executive Chef Bryan Voltaggio said he got the idea from New York Citys Aureole, Charlie Palmers first restaurant, after it opted to extend Restaurant Week prices a few years ago. It gives people the opportunity to come in and try out the restaurant for a softer price point, he said.
It also gives the kitchen a chance to add more creativity and variety to the menu, he added.
Voltaggio expects to continue running the deal indefinitely, though he joked that because the price reflects the year, by 2030 I may need to make some adjustments.
The prix-fixe lunch menu offers a choice of two appetizers, two entrées and two desserts, and the options change nearly every month.