Steakhouses in Penrith are exceptionally popular- and for good reason, they are delicious! It is so common to walk past a trendy beef joint that it is almost impossible to imagine the world without them, however, they didn’t always exist.
The modern beef restaurant is said to have originated in New York city in the mid 19th Century. Interestingly, it is New York that is the initial home of beef restaurants simply because their diners were wealthy enough to afford the best cuts of meat.
Although there are now many varieties of beef restaurant, they are all directly descended from two types 19th Century of beef restaurant: the beef banquet and the chophouse.
Whilst anyone can visit a beef restaurant, this wasn’t always the case. In reality, 19th Century beef banquets were quite exclusive; these affairs were restricted and only men were allowed to attend. Oftentimes, these feasts were held as political gatherings such as victory dinners or candidate fundraisers.
As the name suggests, beef was served. Unlike eateries in our society, beef was the only thing on offer at these events. The most common dish provided at a beef banquet was a sliced beef tenderloin on a slice of white bread. It was essentially an open sandwich!
Although the fact that these gatherings were often political indicates a civilised dining experience, this could not be further from the truth. In fact, the bread was rarely eaten and was instead used as an informal way of deciphering who in attendance had eaten the most meat!
The second ancestor to the beef restaurant we all know and love is the chophouse. Chophouses can be considered as more civilised than the beef banquets, but only marginally. Instead of being used for formal political events, chophouses were designed to offer merchants and clerks a hot meal.
Whilst the décor of these pubs was dark and dingy, they did offer a more varied menu than the beef banquets. Instead of just tenderloin, there were also options for chops, bacon and even potato! Whilst this is still a far stretch from the trendy beef restaurants, you can clearly see where some of their ideas and menu options came from.
Whilst we have both beef banquets and chophouses to thank for the origin of the best steakhouses in Penrith, it is a relief that they have developed and adapted over time. Unlike the male dominated dark and untidy eateries seen in the 19th Century, today’s restaurants are clean, inviting and trendy.
Although these restaurants are still focused on beef dishes, their menus are now extensive and offer something for any diner to enjoy. Diners can relish in the rich flavours of the different cuts of beef alongside both beer, wine and soft drink options. This is a far cry from the tenderloin and ale feasts offered in 19th Century New York.
Visit our Penrith restaurant today to enjoy all the delicious beef dishes we have to offer!