Saturday, 3 December 2011

Right, thats it!

There's no point in doing anything else now.

After sampling steaks from all around the world I can now announce that the best steaks in the world are served in Rowsley, just down the road from my birthplace!

This beauty on the right was one of a brace I acquired last week, and polished off with Mr H last Sunday at East Lodge. Along with a bottle of 2007 Catena Alta malbec, and, I think, another of first growth claret.

The "Don Pedro". Sixteen ounces of pure, grass fed, Argentinian rib eye steak.

The depth and length of flavor was incredible. Tender as any other prime cut I've tasted. Cooked on a red hot plancha, and then popped in the oven for a few minutes, rested, seasoned heavily with salt and pepper, I thought it was amazing, and something I think we should repeat at least every month.

And, yes, I know Argentina is not that local, but I figure if we can import all of their lovely wine, a couple of steaks won't make too much difference.

And, anyway, I use loads of beautiful Derbyshire beef on the menu at East Lodge.

But I really have tried steaks all over the world, most of them very good, all of them large, some massive!

A few years ago I found myself in New York, wondering just how much food its possible to consume, and also, how to make every waiters job as hard as possible. I was in Dean and Deluca, that famous food store, mesmerized by all the produce on display, I thought I'd grab a coffee. All I wanted was a normal coffee. Actually I'm not sure thats possible now, after being shouted at by the barista, for not making my mind up quickly enough, a New Yorker, pushed past and asked for a "half regular, half de-caff, frappe, latte, to go"!

She was either mental or really cool, I still can't work it out!

Luckily, my next choice was much more straight forward. Arriving at Grand Central Station, bypassing the oyster bar and heading straight to the Michael Jordon steak house, we were offered the days specials. Either a three and a half pound lobster, cooked how you like it, or a thirty two ounce "T bone"!

Job done then, I'll have one of those, rare, house fries on the side and a starter of roasted marrow bones.

Quite full after that!

One summer mum and dad took an old farm house in Tuscany for a couple of weeks, and I joined them for a few days.

Up on the hill was an old castle, converted into a restaurant, it was very dramatic, and a bit off the beaten track.
So there I was, tucking into my starter of linguini with scampi, when this massive, moustached, Italian walked in.

Followed, I presume, by his wife and daughter, and they were pretty big as well!

Half an hour later, two waiters came into the restaurant, and put down this huge steak florentine, carved a slice off each for his wife and daughter, and then just lifted the remaining hunk of beef onto his plate! Brilliant!

The next night we went there again, and dad and myself shared one, and it was, of course, delicious.

So, there you are.

My search around the world for the best steak has ended.

And all the time it was just down the road from where I was born in Darley Dale, how lucky is that!

Right that's it!

Next time I'm going to tell you how I performed a Christmas miracle and have turned Sophie into a sprout lover!

And, how, up at East Lodge, we have had our first snow of the season!

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