A Birthday Celebration at Kaiser’s Chophouse

It’s the cute one’s birthday and she wants to go somewhere that’s close, new and trendy. Skimming our local newspaper, I came upon a blurb about Kaiser’s Chophouse. (Really, local Atlanta paper–black and white food pictures? Is this 1958?). Kaiser’s is new, it’s close to us, and it’s trendy. Minutes later, a reservation for two was obtained.

“Is this your first visit with us?”. This question gets asked a lot tonight. We are in Sandy Springs at the former location of Lettuce Souprise You, followed by Jason’s Deli. They have completely redone the place, and you would never know that there used to be a big salad bar here, or a deli chain for that matter. As of this writing, Kaiser’s has been open for about six weeks.

The dining room is large and loud. It’s busy and really hard to hear. Kaiser’s is the brainchild of Chef Peter Kaiser, who started in Atlanta with the Pano and Paul’s folks and worked his way up to the executive chef position at the ill-fated Here to Serve group.  Once Here to Serve went belly up, Kaiser set out on his own, with a little seed money from Kevin Rathbun. Hey, we don’t care who is cooking as long as the food is good.

A good thing to have here is a reservation. Otherwise, you will sit in the bar like these people.

Many looked like they were in for a long wait.

Speaking of waiting, we had to wait about ten minutes just to get a beer list from our waiter. Being busy is good, if you can handle the crowds. We think they need a beer list for every table. If you can actually get a list, the choices are pretty good. Another ten minutes pass before the beers are delivered.

We get a canned Wicked Weed Lunatic Blonde Belgian Ale (on the left) and a Southbound Scattered Sun Wit on draft. It’s hard to believe, but both beers taste almost the same. Maybe they share the recipe.

While we wait 20 minutes for our beer, some goodness is delivered.

Fortunately,

Anybody recognize this appetizer from Pano and Paul’s?

Yes, that’s the fried lobster tail, made famous a long time ago. It’s a perfect copy of the recipe. It brings back a lot of memories of special dinners from the 1990’s.

We are here for meat, and Kaiser’s can satisfy your inner carnivore. The meats are divided into two sections on the menu, the “uptown meats” and the “downtown meats”. We order from the downtown section, because only rap stars and NBA players can afford the uptown stuff. Eve orders the flank steak.

Flank steak is a bit chewy, so we won’t complain about that. It’s very tasty, but if you don’t like to masticate in public, you may want to order something more tender, like the drop cut ribeye.

My meal is usually not as good as Eve’s, but tonight mine is better. They nailed the steak. It was tender and flavorful, just what you would expect from a chophouse.

We also get a couple of sides. The “little potatoes, hard to peel” are nicely seasoned.

There are enough to share for two. We also share some asparagus.

These are very large. Our only complaint is that the sides are a bit pricey at $9 a pop. Kaiser’s is making a lot of money on those sides.

The grand finale is dessert. Because it’s a birthday, we can pick anything on the dessert menu. What’s the birthday girl going to choose?

Pistachio cake! It comes with olive oil ice cream and a citrus glaze. Good stuff.

By the way, anyone know who this guy is?

Reminds me of Matthew McConaughey . He looked at me all night while we had our dinner.


The bottom line on Kaiser’s Chophouse: The food is great, but we would have expected better service from a chef that used to work at the Buckhead Life Group, which has some of the best service in the city. Chef Kaiser has the back of the house taken care of. Now it’s time to handle the front of the house. There were very long waits between everything and we were there for over two hours. We were not in a hurry, but people will notice, and those “first visits” may turn into last visits.

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