Red the Steakhouse: Surf vs. Turf

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On a recent Saturday night, we visited South Beach's Red the Steakhouse and were delighted when chef Peter Vauthy amicably provided some plates for us to taste. The entrées consisted of the du jour item -- halibut -- and an eight-ounce filet mignon.

The Surf

As our knowledgeable server informed us, the halibut is on the menu during its season (about three months). The pan-seared fish ($49) has a multitude of components, such as orzo, mushrooms, peas, and hearty chunks of lobster meat. The creamy sauce with a touch of truffle oil is not too rich and topped with microgreens. The only drawback is the price, which is about $10 to $15 more than this dish should cost.

The Turf

The eight-ounce. filet mignon ($39) is aged-certified USDA Beef Angus Prime, which, as every well-trained server at Red will tell you, "is the top 1.5 percent of graded beef in the United States." These meat is tender and juicy, with a buttery flavor.

Chef Vauthy seasons this steak with Kosher salt, Tellicherry pepper (a higher-grade black pepper), and "aglio brushing." The result is a fine steak, but nothing you haven't tasted before. So while the meat at Red is hyped up with well-rehearsed lines, the final product is nothing spectacular.

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