STK is a Mood
STK is part of a steakhouse chain that boasts enticing happy hours to keep you coming back for more. My first experience with STK was during their Office Hours happy hour, in which I tried the shrimp steam buns + wagyu meatballs for nibbles. The steam buns had the perfect seafood to spinach to bun ratio, with just enough aoili to not be overwhelming. The American-style Kobe beef reminding me of meatballs that should top spaghetti. The meat melted in my mouth, with it's rich flavor being perfectly balanced by the acidity of the tomato sauce.
I was adventurous with the cocktails by trying those with the addition of egg whites, like the Boiler Room + Best Practices. While they weren't my first choice (I'm a purist), my companion enjoyed them both. I also had the Old Boys Club, which has a strong walnut flavor, but my fave had to be the Big Enchilada. If you know me well, then you know that I LOVE me some tequila even more than I love sipping on Oban 14.
My second encounter with STK was for their new Thursday night treat of Oyster Happy Hour. If you've read this far, then I know you're pausing like wait. Aren't you vegan? Aren't you allergic to oysters?!! Yes and yes. My first time at STK was prior to the change in my diet. It's not easy being vegan in the South y'all. I rarely eat beef or chicken, and only to taste. I do occasionally eat seafood, and I'm not stopping anytime soon. The mercury can have the 20% if it means I don't have to give up that sweet, succulent delicacy. I love to eat oysters, and my oyster allergy became apparent around the time I turned 24. I tried to eat my way through it with the help of benadryl, but it's gotten progressively worse. I've stopped trying after my last encounter adversely affected my face, but then again I have yet to take any benadryl before I eat said oysters. I should probably get an epi pen to keep handy in case of anaphylactic shock. No but seriously. I know, I'm so ridiculous for putting my life in danger over food. The universe likes to play cruel jokes I see.
I knew I was coming for Oyster Happy Hour, and I knew that it wouldn't be a great idea to take a benedryl, hope that the oysters don't make my immune system react immediately, and drink wine on top of all of that. So I brought a representative to taste them for me, as I looked at their shiny, bulbous flesh in nostalgic resentment. The oysters offered were James River from Virginia and Dabob Bay from Hood Canal, WA, so we had a little East Coast v. West Coast battle going. The Debob Bay oysters were slightly briny, with a hint of sweetness, and the James River oysters had less salinity and were meatier than the Debob Bay oysters.
The shrimp were large and had a very clean taste. Their ceviche was fresh, colorful, and full of flavor with calamari, red + yellow peppers, red onion, avocado, cilantro, and lime + lemon juice. I don't normally eat ceviche because cilantro tastes like bubbles to me, avocado makes me nauseated, and I'm not a fan of raw onions, but I'll try almost anything to challenge my perspective. The crab claws were a standout, as they were sweet and buttery straight out of the shell. I wish I had ordered more of them, but that gives me a reason to come back again.
If you haven't tried STK, what are you waiting for? The sexy ambience is decorated with dark wood and white leather that would be perfect for a special occasion, first date, or Happy Fri-YAY. They have a DJ keeping the great vibes amplified, so pull out your . If you want to partake in Happy Hour, just make sure that you sit in the bar + cocktail area where the steer horns are decorated. I highly recommend STK for their ambience, service, and quality of food. You never know who you may meet when you chat it up at the bar.
Have you been to STK? Comment below with your favorite indulgent nibble and fancy cocktail.