4917 Center Street
Cost: $60 for two drinks, appetizer, two meals and shared dessert
Reservations: Not needed for our Tuesday visit. but call ahead on busy days.
Greetings Eaters and Readers!
This month marks our 3rd-year anniversary of New Food Friday. And what better way to celebrate than dine where Omaha’s beloved Billionaire does once a week? If it’s good enough for Warren Buffett, it’s good enough for us too, right?
Following my craving for tomato juice and the desire to get something I never order, I sprung for a Bloody Mary. Given how different one can create this veggie cocktail, I was a little nervous for Gorat’s rendition. My first sip was loaded with black pepper and cilantro. Not. A. Fan. I couldn’t finish the rest, but to no fault of the maker. I simply discovered I’d rather stick to the basics.
Martha ordered a Strawmosa and rather enjoyed it. Sweet and balanced, she almost felt bad enjoying her drink as much as she did given my displeasure. So we swapped a few sips and she tried to help me with the Bloody Mary.
Our mouths watered at the sight of the marinated Thai chicken skewers we ordered and promptly inhaled them. The chicken was hot, tender, juicy and perfectly glazed — pairing well with the sweet chili sauce on the side.
Having read positive reviews, I knew well before I arrived that I’d be getting the Chicken Fried Steak. And I’m glad I did. It’s hard not to love steak coated in crispy breading topped with gravy. And as I expected, Gorat’s did it well. I also had no trouble finishing my creamy mashed potatoes. As for the seasoned vegetables … I was too busy enjoying the rest to really touch those. As we usually swap bites, Martha chimes in that the breading seemed absolutely perfect and she’ll definitely order this on her next visit.
Martha’s pre-meal option was soup or salad. And although the server mentioned something about creamy potato (yummm), she chose the soup that was described as having “bison and sausage.” Wanting to try something new, she quite enjoyed the hearty, hint-of-spiciness soup.
For her main course, Martha wavered between wanting the aforementioned chicken fried steak or enjoying something different so we could cover the menu as best as we could. She landed on the Kurtoba Double Cut Pork Chop. Grilled, with a robust herb rub of sorts, and topped with fire-roasted apple compote and pan jus, Martha thought the chops were delicious – tender and hot and cooked just right.
She enjoyed her mashed potatoes as much as I did and also had an order of the Corn Bread Casserole. She expected a little more flavor from the casserole (a light honey glaze perhaps?), but she used a little of the sauce from the pork chops and devoured it none-the-less. With a chop to spare when the evening ended, Martha was perfectly pleased with her choice.
I’m not going to lie, knowing there was bread pudding on the menu was a definite factor in my choosing of Gorat’s. Aside from the scorched pieces on the top, this bread pudding was pleasing to the palate. The bread had sweet berries throughout and the vanilla bean ice cream was a nice compliment (although, isn’t that true of all ice cream?) While we wouldn’t launch this pudding to the top of our best-ever list (looking at you, Louie’s Wine Dive), we’d still recommend it to other bread pudding lovers.
Martha’s enjoyment came from the over-all package and experience. To her, it felt like the old steakhouse she used to go to as a kid with her grandparents: nothing mind-blowing, but comfortable and familiar — like family. Gorat’s dedication to sticking with good, Americana staples are clearly what has won over generations of Omahans and international visitors alike. (See below: the map at the entrance calling out visitor’s origins all over the world!)
We both noticed how thoroughly diverse the dining room was that night: a young man dined alone and ended his evening with a Warren-cardboard-cutout-selfie; a family held their Christmas gathering in one corner; birthday’s were being celebrated in another and on our way out, a duo of young businessmen were just being seated.
Clearly, all ages and nationalities seemed to have wanted to find out for themselves why — with a wallet that could take him anywhere in the world — Omaha’s favorite Billionaire keeps coming back to Gorat’s. We gather it has a lot to do with their comfortable consistency and for that, we give Gorat’s two forks up.
If Warren ever wants to tell us what Gorat’s means to him over steak and strawmosas, we’ll keep our schedules open and our forks handy.
Martha and Jaclyn
Feature image via TVamp