Hey, hotshot, here's a question: in this blue-collar meat-and-potatoes town that is Detroit, who's got the best steaks on the menu? As we've watched our old-school steakhouses slowly die off one by one (Carl's Chophouse, Laffrey's Steaks on the Hearth, etc.), there is one breed of steakhouse still serving top-grade USDA choice beef at prices that might make you blush.
Well, that wouldn't be the ONLY thing making you blush. If meat is what you want, take thee to the booby bar. Known for having better steak specials than a Las Vegas buffet and being home to some of the best chefs in the area serving up gourmet cuisine to VIP clientele, if it's top-quality eats you're after, the topless joints are the way to go.
Meet the new guy: Larry Flynt's Hustler Club in Lincoln Park. As the newest "gentlemen's club" to open in the area, the Hustler Club attempts a certain level of prestige. Topless? Yes; but seedy it's not. This is the kind of club that looks less like a skin parlor and more like an ultra lounge, and they cater specifically to a business professional crowd (check out the business casual dress code — for customers, of course). This upscale attitude is reflected in the food. A whopping 60-item menu surveys the luxury landscape, from herb-roasted Australian rack of lamb to center-cut filet mignon, twin lobster tails and surf & turf. Worth a try is Executive Chef Tyler Mackle's signature stuffed tenderloin (with morel and Shiitake mushrooms, scallions and mozzarella).
Mackle is no stranger to the VIP crowd. He graduated at the head of the class from Schoolcraft Culinary College, served as Geoffrey Fieger's personal chef during his run for governor, catered weddings for the likes of Mary Conway, Fred McCloud and Ruth Spencer, and participated in a number of charity dinners held at places like Cranbrook and the St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center. Mackle is a very sincere chef, a staunch perfectionist who takes a tremendous amount of pride in his work and is attentive to even the tiniest details. It may be a strip club, but this is some serious cooking. The rack of lamb is whole-roasted and rubbed in a complimentary seasoning of rosemary, herbs and Mackle's own secret recipe seasoned salt. You have your choice of sauce, but the raspberry lamb reduction was made to be served with this dish, and you would be remiss to order anything else with it. The thick sauce has a gorgeous, deep purple hue, and the flavor is rich raspberry — akin to raspberry liqueurs like Chambord, but not overly sweet. This is an unexpected complement to the pungent lamb.
If lamb isn't your thing ... well, it should be, but if it isn't ... try the filet. Served with a Cabernet demi-glace, this choice meat is grilled (NOT charred) to perfection, and is succulently tender and juicy. Best of all, it's 10 bucks everyday (except Tuesdays, which is $2 well drinks and beer day). If believing that the cuisine of a gentlemen's club is the most bang for your buck (so to speak) is wrong, then we don't want to be right. | RDW