Osso Steakhouse

Time: Saturday. April 5. 7:30 PM. Reservation.
Location: SF; Nob Hill
Address: 1177 California St
Website: ossosteakhouse.com
Cuisine: Steak
Party Size: 6 (M&V; K&S; L&Y)
Order: 5 cocktails, 3 glasses of wine, 2 caesar salads, 6 sides, 6 steaks, 3 desserts, 1 scotch, 2 espresso
Pre-tip Cost: $560 [$515 food & drink; $45 tax]
Verdict: We found the beef!

Like the moon, I go through different phases of what cuisine is my “flavor of the moment.”   The first time I tried fettuccini Alfredo I was introduced to a world of pasta beyond the scope of my young imagination.  After that first time, I would eat it any chance I got – many in the frozen dinner form.   Years later I would be introduced to Indian food (thanks mainly to a 50% off meals from 11pm-1am special promotion) that made me really start to question the preconceived notions inherited from my parents of what constitutes good food.  From then on, barriers fell more frequently – Thai, sushi, Ethiopian, Korean and many more.  Even now there are frontiers of ethnic foods I have yet to experience.  But at least now, I have the open mind to try them.

Back to the point.   While the moon goes through it’s phases it always remains tidally locked to the earth.  I guess you could say that I am tidally locked to steak.  No matter what my current tasting obsession is; I can always find time for the red wonder of the world.

At a recent afternoon spent grilling in Dolores Park, we met a couple who it turns out shares my love of the cow.   After a quick introduction, we quickly moved on to discuss meat and specifically our favorite steak joints.   They said their number one was Osso, to which I wittily replied “Oh, is that So.”   After the bad joke receded into the nothingness it belonged, I mentioned I had never been to (or admittedly heard of) Osso and the rest is history.

Osso is located atop Nob Hill on California Street across from Grace Cathedral and is accessible via the California cable car or the 1 bus line.   Upon entering, the establishment oozes with an art deco style that is coupled with a classic Chicago steakhouse creating a somewhat classier feel than most of the San Francisco eateries.

Our waiter completed an in depth review of the menu, including going over the details of the larger cuts of meat.    When all was said and done, the table ordered some cocktails, two salads and a side and steak for everyone.


The Menu
The Steaks
The table ordered two cocktails which arrive in the strainer.
Side Car


Basil Martini


The caesar salad was disappointing.   The dressing was very thin and it looked flimsy.
Sad Caesar

The asparagus and goat cheese was an interesting combination I’d never tried before.

Goat Cheese Asparagus


I was thrilled to see a twice baked potato on the menu.   These were winners.   I didn’t try the spinach.
Two Twice Baked & a Spinach


Now that is enough fluff – time to get to the meat of the matter.   Osso means “bone” in Italian and bone-in steaks are their speciality.  Naturally, that is what I (and most of the table) ordered.   I went with “the gladiator” and double cut filet mignon; medium rare.   This sucker was probably 2 inches thick.
The Gladiator


More Gladiator

The steak was cooked perfectly (the poor photo does it no justice).   The flavor was immense.   The steak is cooked in a its own juices, lightly seasoned with garlic and rosemary.   The iron skillet creates a fantastic texture on the top/bottom.

A Blurry Medium Rare

As a reward for eating the entire gladiator, a dessert reward was presented (since the steak wasn’t enough food).

The additional deserts we ordered were the mango panna cotta and the green tea bread pudding.   Both were good but by this point in the night I was 6 sheets into the meat dimension and didn’t have much interest in the sweeter side of things.
Mango Panna Cotta
Green Tea Bread Pudding

Going out for steaks like this is not a common occurrence however I do look forward to the next time the gladiator and I do battle.    This is one training regimen I can look forward to.

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