Unpretentious southern sophistication is the essence of Fort Worth, TX. And both Wicked Butcher and the art deco hotel that houses the visit-worthy steakhouse nail Fort Worth charm on the bullseye.
Home to Wicked Butcher, the historic Sinclair Hotel, sits on the edge of the vibrant downtown residential and entertainment district of Sundance Square. Expect to be greeted by a hostess on the main level of the hotel, who will lead you down a staircase to the elevated but approachable steakhouse.
Where To Start
On the way to your table, you fire up your up your taste buds as you walk past a glass display of various steaks on offer. Lickety-split, your waiter arrives and asks what he may serve you to drink as you eeny, meeny, miny, moe the drink menu.
Among the extensive list of wine selections are many rare gems that you will not find at your local liquor store. For a classic Napa cab with spice on the nose of cigar and cinnamon, dark cherry fruit and a faint hidden oak taste, and a smooth finish, Trefethen cabernet will have you jumping out of your seat. If you’re eating a steak, a good red like this is a must. But Wicked Butcher offers a mixed drink that is worth the visit alone: the Smoking Barrel.
The Smoking Barrel is High West Double Rye whiskey poured over ice in a mixing glass. Peach, orange, angostura and Peychaud’s bitters are added along with a housemade simple syrup. This concoction is then gently stirred for 30 seconds and poured into a decanter before mesquite smoke is equally gently added. The tableside pouring, over a Texas-size ice cube, is more than memorable. Smoking Barrel by name, Smoking Barrel by nature.
Appetizers & Soups
After a delicious amuse bouche, our dinner started with Steak Tartare. Beautifully presented with a delicate egg shell-encased egg yolk emulsion, the hand-cut filet mignon was mixed with chili oil, parmesan, green onions and capers. The finishing touch: mustard seed caviar and housemade Yukon gold potato chips.
First, a confession. I’m a little partial; I love cream of cauliflower soup. And Wicked Butcher produced a dinner winner.
Pre-pandemic, when Central Market had sample cups sitting aside their troughs of soup selections, I’d sample the creamy cauliflower soup with a smile on my face like I was enjoying my last meal. Wicked Butcher’s Cream of Cauliflower Soup so far surpassed my previous fave that it tasted like I was eating the creamy goodness for the very first time.
As a nutritionist, I loved the heart-healthy antioxidants and fiber boost I was getting from the cauliflower. I was also keenly aware that this soup was way too decadent to be in the same zip code as “healthy.” Nonetheless, I scooped every last spoonful and let the flavor dance in my mouth before swallowing it down with gluttonous joy.
Tangy, sharp and savory it was served with roasted cauliflower florets, garnished with toasted pine nuts and finished with a drizzle of drawn brown butter. The aged parmesan tuile atop was a nice final touch.
From the soup we moved to a tasty Porterhouse Steak, a combination of New York strip and filet mignon. Wicked Butcher dry-age the meat for over 28-days in a temperature and humidity-controlled meat locker. Then, each porterhouse is hand-carved by the Executive Chef before being presented on a hot skillet.
Did we save room for dessert? Yes, we did. Two, in fact.
We started with the Wicked Sundae. Living up to its name, the sundae was a mashup of caramel corn, brownie chunk, pecans and caramel sauce — all smashed into chocolate ice cream. Whipped cream and cherries topped it off. Such sweet, creamy, crunchy, salty perfection!
On a roll, next we dipped our cool spoons into the warm top and through the hot middle of a Molten Chocolate Souffle. With snow sugar dusting and creme Anglaise, this dessert was a chocolate-lovers dream! Paired with a port wine, c’est delicieux. (That’s right: It’s delicious.)
We finished with cappuccino: Italian espresso with steamed whole milk. A lovely ending to a transcendent meal, it was served in a ceramic mug with the daintiest little silver spoon.
Mention Texas Lifestyle Magazine when making your reservation for a free appetizer through April 30, 2021.
Cover photo courtesy The Sinclair Hotel
Brook Benten Jimenez, M.Ed. is a contributing writer to Texas Lifestyle Magazine. She’s a fitness and wellness enthusiast with 20-years of experience. Her book, Sweat Like a Mother, will be released later this year and is full of personal stories as a mother of two, humor, and twenty at-home workouts. Follow her at @BrookBenten on Instagram or www.BrookBenten.com.