Steak at Al's Steakhouse
Foods from Al's Steakhouse
Comments

2013 Mar 18
I stopped in for lunch for the first time in a few years and it was much as I remembered it; pricey but good. The steaks were well received as were the baked potatoes. The chopped sirloin burger with cheddar cheese and fried onions was really good. The onion rings needed to be salted but were made in house and very tasty. The fries too needed salting but were very good.I started with a French onion soup it was an absolute classic. Sweet and salty with a rich broth topped with some great bread and excellent melted cheese. The classic Al's salad dressing was creamy garlic goodness. It was delicious and I was told it was from the wild garlic they used. I really want to get some to take home and use in coleslaw...

2011 Dec 10
Al's is a traditional family-owned Steakhouse. Their steak is the best bet in town, the quality and taste of the meat unbeatable, always cooked to perfection and has been constant over the years. Today, the steak at Al's has the same excellent taste as it did in the mid-90's when I first visited. I wouldn't be surprised if they had kept the same supplier.

I usually indulge in their staple Charbroiled Filet Mignon and substitute the veggies for extra salad, as an excuse to eat more of their house garlic dressing which is heavenly creamy and the perfect taste to start a steak meal with. The house garlic dressing is so popular they sell it by the bottle.

My favourite non-meat dish at Al's is their Lightly Breaded North Atlantic Sole Filet. Just the fact that they have sole meunière on the menu makes of this restaurant an institution -- one which never lets you down. The personal touch of the owner takes the form of a courteous visit to your table, to wish you bon appetit and ensure everything's to your liking -- and do expect this each time you visit.

Lovely place, great atmosphere, fabulous food, all in harmony with the slow pace of the service. As a regular patron, I highly recommend, even if it is not inexpensive.

2010 Nov 17
I have to agree with nearly every comment posted on this site about Al's Steakhouse. It was disappointing and over priced. It certainly rings true that you leave the meal feeling you paid too much rather than imagining what you might order next time. I definitely will not be returning to Al's. I honestly left my mealing knowing full well I could have prepared a far better steak dinner at home on my Webber. The entire menu needs a massive overhaul, it's archaic, over cooked, flavourless (especially the meat). Al would do well by dining at a real steakhouse himself to experience how good food can really taste. The finest steakhouse I have ever had the pleasure of dining at was "529" in Winnipeg, MB. The meal cost twice what we paid at Al's but worth every penny if not more. The meat is specially aged and full of flavour. There is a large selection of cuts and preparations to choose from. The meal is "a la carte" so sides are purchased separately however the selection ranges from creamed garlic spinach, sauted wild mushrooms to fresh asparagus spears. The sides are also quite large and served in the middle of the table, they are meant to be shared. Looking around at Al's I noticed most of the customers dining were pensioners, which indicates that at some point Al's will have to focus on revamping their menu rather than their decor. Al's should work on building a reputation with a new generation, while still maintaining the current clientel or eventually find yourself go the way of the dinosaur or perhaps "Le Cirque". Although the meal was disappointing our service wasn't. The service wasn't outstanding but our waitperson was friendly and relatively attentive. We didn't notice the 15% tip included so we also left a tip so in the end we paid nearly a third of our total bill in tips. We are presently looking for the best steakhouse in Ottawa, we have been to Baton Rouge and now Al's, I guess our search continues.

2010 Jul 20
All the food was really good, I was quite pleased with my meal and my father was too.

The bread was fresh.
The house salad was good.
I had the lobster with garlic butter which was quite delicious.
My mashed potatoes were fluffy and delicious.
I had a delicious lemon cheesecake type dessert which was free because my father told them it was a birthday dinner.

I would go back.

2006 Dec 21
we were about 10 people, seperate bills. I understand that they might not be the only place that does it, but i hate the practice of including the tip on the bill. Heck, the waiter can then do anything, he knows he's still getting his tip.

As for the food, i didn't get a dessert.. i was stuffed at that point and didn't bother looking at the dessert menu, so i don't know how much they charge, but i agree with you about the prices.

Hey, as i said earlier, food wasn't BAD, it just was OK and not really worth the price i paid, but then thinking about it a little more, i realize it's often the case at steakhouses. That's one of the reasons it's a type of restaurant i don't go to often.

2006 Dec 20
SteffQc,

It's standard for most restaurants to add a 15% gratuity on the bill for large groups...how many people were in your party?

Anyway, it's a completely separate issue from the quality of the food. I used to supply Al's with their desserts 3 or 4 years ago. They are one of those restaurants that make money hand over fist which is why they can get away with such mediocre food. They used to haggle with me about the price of the cakes I supplied them with because for some insane reason they wanted to charge $3.50 for a dessert when they would charge $30 for a steak dinner. Just for comparison purposes, Social was charging $8 at the time for their desserts and most everyone else was charging about $6.

2006 Dec 20
when you mentioned the escargot and the cheese, i agreed totally with you. I haven't eaten escargots THAT often in my life, but i know i really like them. I even had them at the steakhouse near my house in Hull (Sirolas) and they were average, but i just love the taste. But you are right about the cheese being melted into a blanket over them. I did have to cut through with the knife.

As for the tip, it was 15% i think.. the whole meal cost me like friggin' 75$, for 2 glasses of wine, escargot and the filet mignon.

That's why i said it was so damn expensive for what it was.. just average food IMO. Nothing like Domus or any of the other restaurants i really like can dish out for that price.

2006 Dec 19
I also had the escargot, and i think it sat too long, because the cheese was like a rubber blanket on the top of the dish...Should you have to cut 'melted' cheese with a knife?

The bill was my work's responsibility so I didn't get to see it. I can't beleive they included the tip in your bill! Isn't that supposed to be up to the customer? How much did they add?

2006 Dec 19
i went there today (office Xmas party) for lunch/dinner and it was just ok. The food was fine (i had "escargots" as the entree and filet mignon as the main course) and was cooked as requested, but the price was extremely high for the "just average" quality of the food.

I made the mistake of getting 2 glasses of beaujolais (total of 18$), so it raised the total price to a ridiculous amount for that meal. Usually i don't mind paying a lot for good food, but this was just average. When you get out of a restaurant and feel you spent too much, it's never a good sign.

Add to that the fact that they put the tip ON the bill.. which is a definite no-no in my books. I truely HATE when restaurants do this. I see it as an insult. I usually tip very well, but when they put the tip already on the bill, i never add a cent more.

Anyways.. average experience, i'm planning on checking other places out in the future.. no need or real desire to go back.


2006 Dec 10
Went with office for our Xmas dinner.

For being one of the most popular and oldest restaurants in the city, they really need to step it up to maintain (rebuild?) their reputation.

I was conservatively expecting better.

The steaks weren't cooked as ordered. Medium rare was almost raw, medium well was like leather. The meat was flavourless.

Shrimp was rubbery.

Service was indifferent and borderline rude. My request, "Can I please have a side of mayonnaise?" ..the answer "Yah sure, remind me later." .. wtf is that?

Al visited our table and shared a couple of amusing anecdotes, but his charm didn't make up for the disappointment overall.

Not going back.


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Oct 5
This is the best filet mignon I have had in a long time. It was done as requested (medium rare) and a bit toasty at the tips. Simply nice piece of beef. It came with a started salad with their lovely house dressing. My kids were fighting for my salad! Can you believe? The steak came with a choice of side. I went with the garlic rice which was a flavourful pilaf. Warms buns are served right after drinks arrived. Honestly, I think this is the best value for money for a steakhouse compared to many others, not counting the very fancy spots, but it is comparing the same thing. Service was pretty good. Our waitress had many big tables!

2006 Dec 21
It's interesting. Just for fun, I brought up menus from both Hy's and Al's. The prices are really not that much different, but from what I remember of the last time I had lunch or dinner at Hy's, the quality of the food and service was outstanding.

Perhaps it's worth a revisit to Hy's :)