I have visited the W Hotel on Fort Lauderdale beach many times in the past few months, but I have never had the opportunity to dine at Steak 954, the hotel’s signature restaurant. The modern steakhouse is reminiscent of the New York restaurants I frequented when I lived there. Steak 954 is minimalist in design, yet the accents make a bold statement, most notably, the large fish tank filled with jellyfish, which is the focal point of the venue.
My guest Mikey and I began our meal with two signature martinis. I ordered the Sunrise, a smooth blend of rum, passionfruit puree, sage, pineapple and lime. My guest opted for the Sebastian, which consisted of tequila reposado, jalapeno and sauvignon blanc. An odd mix perhaps, but it seemed to work nicely.
For our starters, we ordered a Wedge Salad, Big EyeTuna and Foie Gras Tacos and the Lobster & Crab Coconut Ceviche. The salad, although traditional was prepared with a delicious light blue cheese dressing on top of a fresh lettuce wedge, diced tomatoes and crispy bacon. Next we sampled the Foie Gras Tacos, definitely one of the most unique items featured on the menu. The overall taste of the dish was superb, despite none of the ingredients standing out. We were unable to tell exactly what was in the taco, especially after adding guacamole to the mix.
Our favorite selection of the three was the Lobster & Coconut Ceviche. The ceviche was prepared using fresh lobster and crabmeat served with thinly sliced coconut. The coconut added a bit of texture and flavor to the dish but did not overpower it.
For our entrees, I decided on the Dry-Aged rib eye steak. The steak was prepared with a salt and pepper rub and then braised with butter. The selection was cooked to a perfect medium-rare temperature and had the texture of a filet mignon, which was much to my liking. Mikey decided on the Pan Roasted Bronzino, a fish not too common on South Florida menus. The fish was well seasoned and served over a roasted vegetable medley. Although the rib eye was good, we both favored the fish as our entrée of choice.
To accompany our selections, we received a tip from our good friend Michael Murphy to try the Truffle Potato Gratin. The dish was delicious, although a touch too rich for our entrees. Our other side, Roasted Cauliflower with Bacon, didn’t compliment either dish, but may have played well with the roasted chicken also offer by the restaurant.
After dinner, the chef brought us a selection of the restaurant’s most popular and delectable desserts. Most notable of the three was the Baked Alaska. This dish is usually only prepared at weddings, bar mitzvahs and on cruises, so seeing this offered was quite surprising. The dessert, served with apricot sorbet and Tahitian vanilla ice cream was delightful and probably the best item we tasted during the entire evening besides the Bronzino.
In addition, we were served the Peanut Butter Soufflé and Meyer Lemon Crème Brulée. Both of these were good, but definitely overshadowed by the Baked Alaska.
Steak 954 is a wonderful choice if you are looking to experience something different than traditional South Florida fare, while maintaining an upscale-chic environment.