The best steak night in town is every night at La Casa de Caballo. The Montrose "Tex-Mex" steakhouse features two giant steaks on its menu—one that's three pounds of USDA Prime top sirloin for four people, and one that's a gargantuan 4-pound ribeye cap meant to feed six people. I can now say I've had them both, and where the top sirloin is concerned, you'll struggle to find a finer steak for a better bargain in Houston.
La Casa de Caballo
Last week, I headed to La Casa de Caballo to split the smaller of the two steaks—the 3-pound sirloin—with three friends. At $70 for the whole steak, two giant bunches of grilled asparagus, two bowls of creamy refried beans, two plates of roasted potatoes, several batches of freshly-made tortillas, and a plate of grilled peppers and squash, you're getting a terrific deal. The entire affair works out to $17.50 a person. Split a couple of $35 bottles of wine between the table and you're walking out of La Casa de Caballo with a belly blissfully full of wine and meat for only $35 each. That's like Houston Restaurant Week prices every night, every week.
The trick with the top sirloin is ordering it immediately when you sit down, as the three pounds of meat take 40 minutes to cook. Owner Carlos Abedrop seasons his steaks very simply—with only salt and pepper—and allows the meat to slowly infuse with the flavors of the mesquite and pecan wood over which it's smoked. The perfectly rendered fat alone is worth the wait.
Although La Casa de Caballo will bring you a snack plate of cheese and olives while you wait, we decided to cheat a little and order some queso flameado to pass the time. The stretchy cheese was served in a scalding hot skillet and dotted with large chunks of onion and bell pepper, both bearing the same blister marks as the cheese. We scooped the messy cheese into our tortillas using forks and fingers, delighting in the treat.
When the steak finally came, it was a sight to behold: nearly 50 ounces of medium-rare beef under a crusty char. Our waiter skillfully cut it into eight pieces, at which point each of us dove toward our favorite cuts: one of us wanted the ruby-red middle, one of us the fatty end cap, one of us the charred crust. The steak offers a little something for everybody. One of my friends made fajitas with the bits of steak, tucking them into a hot flour tortilla with salty beans and some slices of grilled peppers. I simply attacked my pieces with a knife and fork, stopping for a few crispy roasted potatoes between bites. We took the entire thing apart in less than 30 minutes.
Although the 3-pound sirloin is on the menu every night, you can also get a great deal on beef Monday nights during football season. That's when La Casa de Caballo offers a Monday Night Football special: beef carpaccio appetizer, an 8-ounce eye of the ribeye entree (with vegetables, beans, and tortillas), a cigar (presumably to smoke outside), and three glasses of wine—all for $80 a person. The special begins at 5 p.m. every Monday night, and the NFL game of the week is shown on all the flat-screens at the bar.