Indy’s Great Steakhouses: Harry & Izzy’s

The Hangout

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Loosen your collar; cast off your jacket. The gorgeously marbled bone-in ribeye at Harry & Izzy’s doesn’t mind. Since 2007, when Craig Huse opened this casual alternative to St. Elmo in homage to the legendary steakhouse’s longtime owners, Harry Roth and Izzy Rosen, the newer kid on the Illinois Street block has lured its own loyal following—one that trades wingtips for Top-Siders but expects its beef to be just as succulent.

Bowtie-wearing Roth and cigar-chomping Rosen were known as a culinary “odd couple.” These two next-door neighbors’ differences aren’t quite so stark; Harry & Izzy’s embraces St. Elmo’s men’s-club panache, all dark woods and black-and-whites of boxing matches and racecars. The Midwest-sourced steaks are just as high-quality (and high-priced): top Choice cuts perfectly seared with St. Elmo’s proprietary seasoning. You can even start your meal with that famous shrimp cocktail (though the red-pepper meatballs with housemade tomato sauce prove just as sinus-clearing). But if St. Elmo is a subdued hum, Harry & Izzy’s is a jovial roar, especially when the flatscreens above the circular bar are playing the Colts game.

This good-time atmosphere alone would probably satisfy the conventioneers and expense-account types crowding the leather booths, either here or at the northside location. Fortunately, Harry & Izzy’s takes its steaks seriously. You may even be tempted to gnaw your ribeye bone for those last little nubs of flavor—but wait until you get home. Harry & Izzy’s may be laid back, but this is still a classy joint. 153 S. Illinois St., 317-635-9594; 4050 E. 82nd St., 317-915-8045;  harryandizzys.com

Price per ounce of the small filet: $5

Largest steak on the menu: 20-ounce bone-in ribeye

Grade of meat: Most steaks upper-third USDA Choice, hand-selected and hand-trimmed

Aging process: One steak is dry-aged up to 55 days; majority of steaks are wet-aged, around 28 days

Wines by the bottle/glass: 270/18

The deal: $40 three-course filet dinner on Sundays

Recommended side: The crispy and tangy fried green tomatoes

Dessert of Choice: The towering, housemade Woodford Reserve bourbon bread pudding

Valet: $10 downtown ($20 for event parking)

Most-famous customer: Robert Downey Jr.

 

We love steak, any way you slice it. In Indianapolis, there’s a steakhouse to cater to every occasion and level of sophistication, and after months of dining like wealthy cavemen, we present them to you here, in juicy detail. A la cartes include a primer on the king cuts (for those who don’t know a porterhouse from a portobello), tips on the best cheap chops in town, a cattle call of beefy terms, and a stab at defining that common condition among steak-lovers—the meat sweats. You want a piece of this? Dig in.

 

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