A couple days ago, our friends took us to Bern’s Steakhouse in St. Petersburg, FL. Apparently, if you want a good steak, you go here.
When you drive up, you wouldn’t necessarily suspect a gourmet steak restaurant was just inside the doors. One clue is the valet parking out front ($5). They do have a dress code: no t-shirts, jeans, or flip flops. Formal wear is encouraged but not necessary.
Bern’s is unique in several ways. First, they grow all their own organic vegetables and beef at their farm. Second, they have the large restaurant wine cellar in the world (more about that in a second). Third, they offer a tour of their kitchen and their wine cellar. Last, they have their own dessert room upstairs.
At Bern’s, you dine, not simply eat. Glancing through the menu, I noticed the prices for a steak were anywhere from $20 to $200, depending on the weight, thickness, and cut of the meat. The steak just melts in your mouth–very good. Plus, the service is incredible.
After dinner, we took a free tour of their kitchen. If you want to eventually become a waiter at Bern’s, you must work in the kitchen for so many hours, so by the time you’re a waiter, you know all the ins and outs of the place. Next, they took us downstairs to their HUGE wine cellar which actually reminded me of a libarary of wines. We passed row upon row of wine bottles.
It was huge. They told us that what we were seeing was only 1/10 of the wine they have–totaling around 100,000 bottles. Many of the wines were bottled 50+ years ago, and we even saw one bottle from 1839!
The wine collection actually dates back to the 1950s when Bern started collecting wine. At that time, he could pick up a bottle for $2 or $3 what would sell for $1,000 now. Many bottles are the only bottles left in the world of that certain vintage, making their prices shoot through the roof. One, albeit, large bottle was going for $60,000.
Last, we headed up to their dessert room upstairs, which is actually a bunch of large wine barrels that create a cozy little nook for you to sit, chat, listen to music, and eat yummy desserts.
The telephone on the back wall you can use to call the pianist and request songs. You can also push the buttons on the left if you would prefer to listen to different styles of music including jazz, contemporary, and pop.
They also have an extensive list of (expensive) wine/sherry/scotch.
I had the creme brulee which was amazing. Seth had Banana’s Foster–also, amazing.
Overall, we were very impressed with Bern’s Steakhouse. We felt it is a true experience in fine dining. Would we go here often: definitely not. We couldn’t afford to, but for the occasional special occasion: definitely.