The Crumb Sweeper is Back
Have you noticed the absence of designated crumb sweepers at high end steak houses? At one time in Harrah’s Steak House there was a designated crumb sweeper. This was usually a teenager whose sole job was to take a small whisk broom or fine toothed comb and brush any bread crumbs that had fallen to the tablecloth. He would usually fill water glasses too. Last night at Fleming’s Steak House, we witnessed the return of the crumb sweeper. Our bus person cleared our table. He skillfully stacked two entrée plates, 5 smaller plates and then with one hand reached into his pocket to remove a small fine toothed comb to gracefully sweep the table in a circular pattern removing stray breadcrumbs. I was overjoyed at this small lost artful task. The busboy promised to return to re-fill our water glasses. I rascally scattered a few more crumbs near the water glass to see if our busboy was a true blue crumb sweeper. He returned and demonstrated true professionalism by pouring and sweeping at the same times. This was just one aspect of our fantastic dinner at Fleming’s Steak House. The Crumb Sweeper is Back.
Fleming’s Steak House is a high end chain restaurant. This one is located in downtown Walnut Creek in a tony shopping district. The entrance is on the second floor of a garage complex. They do offer valet parking which struck me as a little odd. We opted to self-park because we were in a garage. We strolled through the doors to the front desk. The lighting was very low as a true steakhouse should be. The place had that vibration of good things to come. We were seated and immediately staff brought out bread with two varieties of compound butter. The first butter had truffle oil and the other had a wine, garlic combination. They were both good and set a butter theme for the night. We chose our cuts of beef; Ms. Goofy the filet and I Wagyu New York. These steaks were ala-carte so we filled out the ticket with several traditional side dishes. The staff was very professional and prompt.
Ms. Goofy declared her clam chowder to be fresh like the ocean. My signature ‘Flemings Salad’ was overdressed but still tasty. Our entrees were almost immediately served after our first course. The Wagyu was served on a plate of its own. It was slathered with melted butter that I smelled immediately. It looked lonely on that barren plate so I dug in. One bite and I was in love. This was cooked to perfection at a medium rare. The steak had been trimmed of all excess fat or gristle. I actually cut this into small bites to savor each bite. How can I describe the flavor? It was deeply rich with a beefy flavor but the most important flavor component was the lusciousness that lingered after the bite. This was a steak moment that I will cherish. Ms. Goofy loved her butter topped filet. Filets can be bland at times but her medallion had beef flavor that she loved.
The sides of creamed spinach and sautéed mushrooms reinforced that butter was king at this restaurant. Now, I am not complaining about butter because I ate every last bite. The mushrooms had little cloves of roasted garlic that added a yummy sweetness. The creamed spinach had sheets of melted cheese on top to make it even more decadent. The sides dishes were fantastic.
Fleming’s Steak House is a wonderful place to experience steakhouse splendor. Our dinner last night with the Wagyu New York will go down as one of the best steaks ever category. Ms. Goofy gave it two paws up. I was elated to see the return of the crumb sweeper. Parking is not a problem here. This was one fantastic dining experience
Flemings Steak House.