We start this post with a photo, and the fun fact that I used to be a vegetarian.
Obviously I'm not a vegetarian anymore. The reason why I became a vegetarian is pretty straightforward*, and the reason why I'm now not is pretty straightforward also**. Despite being only a four-year period of my life, however, my vegetarianism has had a lasting impact on the way I eat - namely, that I'm pretty cautious about meat, and I still don't really eat a lot of it. So all the great steakhouses of New York - Peter Luger's, Smith and Wollensky, Wolfgangs, etc, etc - register very low on my interest levels. I wouldn't say no if invited to one of them*** but I wouldn't choose them if asked to pick a restaurant, either.
All of this just makes it funnier that H1 and I ended up dining in a steakhouse while we were in Auckland.
A couple of different options were suggested by the friends we were with, and Angus Steak House won on nothing more than sheer novelty factor. I don't think any of us had eaten at a steakhouse before. Certainly none of us had eaten at this one, meaning that the jokes were flying as we each carefully selected our hunks of meat, handed them to the chef, and awaited their arrival back at our table. Because these steaks were phenomenally big. Ridiculously so, even though we all went for the smallest cut (eye fillet, if you're interested). I expected it to be good, but I did not expect to finish my meal, and I really didn't expect to consider it good value for money. The place looked like a solid tourist trap, and how good are those, usually?
I love the fact that I was wrong on both points. I ate all my steak - very slowly towards the end, but I finished it - and it was worth every cent. It was most definitely the most expensive meal I ate while in Auckland, but compared to Smith and Wollensky, I'm willing to bet it was a bargain. Especially considering that it changed my whole attitude towards hunks of meat. I may even choose to go to another steakhouse some day. In a year or two. When I've recovered from this visit.
*My first visit to the US taught me that meat can be produced very cheaply here, and that cheap meat will very quickly make me very unhappy.
**I was ready to try red meat again, and a friend cooked lamb, and I was pleased with my decision to eat it.
***I'm not a ball-breaking, high-flying corporate type, so this is actually pretty unlikely to happen.