Despite seeing more commercials for them than any other chain restaurant this side of Subway, I had never been to an Outback Steakhouse prior to last night.
Well realizing we had a gift card after dog-sitting for a friend, it was time to get a taste of Australia!
Upon entering it looked…like pretty much any other chain steakhouse I had ever been to, and honestly, I was expecting to feel like I was in Australia more than I did. Maybe the bar area is a real down-under feeling, but we didn’t sit there, we came for a formal dinner. But the decoration was not why we came, it was for food.
And when you go to Outback for the first time, you have to order a Bloomin’ Onion of course.
Honestly, my first thought when they set it on the table was, “This thing smells like an order of Rally’s fries.” Not that that’s a bad thing! And folks, let me tell you, the Bloomin’ Onion was good! The dipping sauces (some sort of red-ish horseradish dip and then a kind of ranch) went well with the deep-fried onion. To the point where while we waited for our actual order to arrive, I kept going back for more and ended up eating about half of the damn thing, totally spoiling my dinner. Worth it.
Of course, you can’t get an authentic Australian appetizer without drinks, so we ordered up the Aussie Rum Punch (just fruity rum) and The Wallaby Darned (a kind of thick peach flavored drink), and both were also good! So if the appetizers and drinks are good, the main course has to be as well!
And it was!
I went with their special, the ribs and steak, where you get a half-dozen ribs and a center-cut sirloin (your choice of 6, 8, or 10 oz, I went with the 8), and a side of your choice.
My fiance went with their prime rib.
And folks, the master chefs who spent years honing their craft in Australia did a damn-good of cooking each piece of meat we ordered. I usually order a steak medium in restaurants, knowing that they will under-cook it and it will be medium rare. Well they cooked it perfectly medium, and the fiance’s medium-rare prime rib came out perfectly pink and tasting good. And the Aussie Mashed Potatos were also on-point.
And then it came time for the bill. I was curious to see how high it would get with drinks, an appetizer, and one of the pricier menu items all selected. On similar trips to other chain steakhouses this usually runs us in the neighborhood of $80-85. Total bill before tip at Outback: $65 before we applied our gift card! Not bad at all!
So if you’re wanting an above-average dinner at a relaxed atmosphere steakhouse, then buddy, Outback is the place for you. I’ll go back.
OVERALL SCORE: 4 out of 5.