79-11 Myrtle Ave., Glendale, 418-4355
HOURS: Monday to Thursday, 12 to
10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 12 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Sunday, 12 to 9 p.m.
HANDICAPPED ACCESSIBLE: Yes
CREDIT CARDS: All major
While the Belmont part of Belmont Steaks is all about horses, the
Steaks part is all about great food.
The restaurant is a shrine to horse racing. Photographs of famous jockeys and trainers
smile down at racing connoisseurs. Original riding crops, trophies, stirrups and racing
colors deck the display cases. And paintings of real horses line the walls.
My guest and I dined in "Woodys Corner," a virtual paddock segregated
by a "stall door" on one side and a barnyard fence on another. Meant only for
two and dedicated to renowned horse trainer Woody Stephens, the corner is made special by
huge leather lounge chairs that work wonders on your back.
The lounge chairs are part of another motif: the American steakhouse.
Patrons can begin their meal with an aperitif at a full bar dimly lit by art nouveau
lamps, and end it with a digestif at the cigar bar on the other side.
And in between
you can eat! "At the Starting Gate," my guest and I
ordered mozzarella sticks ($4.95) and shrimp cocktail ($6.95). "Post Position,"
we ordered pasta primavera ($10.50) and grilled chicken. And for a "Fantastic
Finish," we shared a slice of chocolate cream pie ($3.50).
Id say the entrees came in first, with the grilled chicken sliced into thin,
tender pieces instead of a fatty slab. And how can you beat shoestring fries? My guest
loved her pasta primavera, which was elegantly presented (one veggie was shaved into a
rose shape) and perfectly sautéed in garlic and oil.
The appetizers and dessert tied for second, with the mozzarella sticks melt-in-your
mouth fresh, and the jumbo shrimp juicy and flavorful. We also enjoyed the chocolate cream
pie, served in a graham crust with extra whipped cream.
Our waiter, Mike, remarked that the night before our visit, Belmont had been the set of
an independent film their second in a period of years. Im sure it wont
be long before Coppola discovers the place. As far as good food and good-time atmosphere
go, Belmont Steaks takes its place in the Winners Circle.