I have to admit, I forgot all about that when I got my Kobe "A5" New York strip, the most finely marbled beef I've ever tasted outside of Japan. (This is one of the few places in town that get real wagyu from Japan.) Actually, to call it marbled doesn't really explain how thoroughly the fat is incorporated into the beef. It's not juicy, but sublimely buttery, accented by a caramelized, deliciously seasoned crust. It was served with homemade ponzu sauce, half of a tiny fresh lime, and a dab of fresh grated wasabi. All were fine accompaniments, but for the most part, I was content to savor it plain, imagining that each piece would dissolve if I kept it on my tongue for more than a moment (an impossible thing to do, of course).

Some of my dining companions chose a whole fried organic chicken to share. A staffer presented the golden bird to the table before whisking it off to the kitchen to be carved up and plated, along with baby carrots, truffled mac and cheese, and a few thin onion rings. The mac and cheese didn't impress — it had an overbearing taste, and the texture just wasn't luscious — but the chicken was notably moist and flavorful. I appreciated the playful take on soul food, although I can't say I'd go out of my way for it.

Tapioca-crusted snapper was much more dazzling, with a light, crunchy crust and tender, very fresh fish. It was served on a bed of tropical fruit basmati rice, with chile-lime vinaigrette and a garnish of microgreens. A grilled foie gras starter, teamed with crispy shallot rings and rhubarb-ginger preserve, was also nicely prepared.

Decadent dining: Tapioca-crusted snapper and grilled rib eye are just a couple of options at posh new Bourbon Steak.
Jackie Mercandetti
Decadent dining: Tapioca-crusted snapper and grilled rib eye are just a couple of options at posh new Bourbon Steak.

Location Info


Bourbon Steak

7575 E. Princess Drive
Scottsdale, AZ 85255

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: North Scottsdale


Beets and burrata salad: $17
Snapper: $36
Molten chocolate cake: $12
Whole fried chicken: $58
480-513-6002, »web link
Hours: Sunday through Thursday, 6 to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 6 to 10:30 p.m.
Bourbon Steak, The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, 7575 East Princess Drive, Scottsdale

Along with perfectly cooked meats, another Michael Mina signature is trios, which was apparent on the appetizer menu. Everything had three options, from three different salads (I'm glad I chose the one with roasted baby beets, arugula, aged balsamic, and two milky domes of fresh burrata cheese), to three lobster dishes (I wasn't nearly as thrilled with petite lobster corndogs, whose lobster flavor was lost amid the corn batter). As a complimentary appetizer, we got a trio of French fries — paprika with barbecue sauce, truffle with truffled aioli, and herbed with spicy ketchup.

The house bread was a warm pan of truffle-potato focaccia, served with softened butter — scrumptious. I'd also ordered side dishes of roasted asparagus and a trio of potato purées, but when it came down to eating them, I realized I'd already filled up on that focaccia.

Desserts were some of the biggest surprises (and highlights) of the evening. A cylindrical chocolate cake, filled with molten chocolate, was arranged with tiny cubes of chocolate, a fudgy square of chocolate smeared artfully across the plate, and a scoop of malted milk ice cream — as decadent as you'd expect. Velvety mascarpone cheesecake, with a crumbly streusel crust and whipped cream on top, was teamed with bite-sized apple fritters, dusted with powdered sugar. And tropical fruit panna cotta, topped with pineapple chunks, lemongrass consommé, and coconut ice cream, was a dynamic mix of flavors, like a psychedelic trip for the taste buds.

The morning after I ate that $175 Kobe New York strip steak, I was wide-awake at the crack of dawn. I'm not sure if my heart was racing from my stratospheric cholesterol levels, from panic about ransacking my budget, or from the notion of feasting on meat that traveled almost 6,500 miles to reach my dinner plate.

No matter how I looked at it, it was absurd — and I felt a little guilty for enjoying it so much.

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That article was worthless. It hardly mentioned any of the main dishes. It failed to describe how the meat is cooked. No mention of what poaching a steak in butter is, which is the signature of Bourbon Steak. Just a bunch of babble, congrats