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EPICURE: Mini-Review

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Standard steakhouse fare is on the menu at Fleming’s, but what sets it apart is its refined atmosphere—elegant yet soothing and very unchain-like. Warm woods, subdued lighting emanating from tasteful alabaster chandeliers and comfy leather upholstery lend a distinct sense of sophistication. Wall-to-wall carpeting in the main dining room punches up the acoustics, and the open kitchen evokes a hustle-bustle, it’s-all-happening-here sensation.

The menu has all the usual suspects: crab cakes, shrimp cocktail, Ahi tuna and calamari appetizers; Caesar, chopped, spinach and wedge salads; pork, chicken and seafood; and, of course, a hefty selection of wet-aged USDA Prime beef served á la carte with an equally hefty price tag.

Surprisingly full-bodied filets keep pace with robust strips and ribeyes. But the mixed grill version—charred on the outside, with a warm, juicy, red interior—satisfies more than the standard version, which is broiled in a 1,600-degree oven.

The iceberg wedge is excellent, crisp and refreshing, served on an Arctic-cold plate with an equally chilly fork. The Cajun barbecue shrimp, French onion soup, lobster tempura, Fleming’s potatoes (cheesy, gooey and delicious) and sublime tenderloin carpaccio, are must-tries, as is the steak sandwich, a pleasing contrast of tender beef on a crusty roll.

One of the restaurant’s strong suits is its 100-plus wine-by-the-glass menu and wine list, which is comprised of 60 percent big-name selections and the rest boutique labels, all arranged by intensity from lighter to fuller.

The initial over-attentiveness of the waitstaff has mellowed, and Fleming’s is finding an unexpected niche as a cozy neighborhood bar and restaurant complete with bartenders getting chummy with regulars, which makes for a casual dining experience as relaxing as eating in your own home.

555 E. Lancaster Ave., Radnor; (610) 688-9463, flemingssteakhouse.com.

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