The Early Word: Prime Meats in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn


A homemade pretzel, served with butter and tangy mustard, is one of the glories of Prime Meats.

With a name like Prime Meats, you think the place–spawned by Frankie’s Spuntino, just down the block–would be a steak house, but it isn’t…

Sure, there are a couple of steaks on the menu. One is a 36-day aged ribeye you pay $1.80 per ounce for, with steaks averaging 36 to 56 ounces, which is off somewhere in Looneyville, or maybe I should say Lugerville, for the purposes of general eating. And if you wanted a steak that big and expensive, wouldn’t you go to a steakhouse?

The other steak is a very handsome steak frites ($23), which, the menu brags, is a “12 ounce dry aged Creekstone Farm New York strip steak.” This steak is really a masterpiece, charred on the outside, warm and bloody in the middle, served with a fistful of good fries. Really, it’s enough for two to share, and my pal and I did so. What with apps and desserts, they’ll be enough left over for a sandwich tomorrow.

The excellent strip steak in Prime Meats’ steak frites is not to be trifled with


From the steak centerpiece (there’s a burger, too), the menu goes off in inscrutable directions. For one thing, Prime Meats seems to want to be a German restaurant. There’s a pretzel on the menu, and plenty of German sausages, too, paired with too-sweet sauerkraut flavored with apple juice on a charcuterie platter that also includes tongue and pork belly. There’s also a sauerbraten and a Hungarian goulash. It’s as if the owners had looked around, tried to think of another cuisine besides Italian, and came up with German.

The definition of “prime meats” also includes one fish, one chicken, and one pork entree, and it won’t surprise you to hear that pork belly stands in for pork on the current menu. No one has told them that pork belly is so last decade. The dishes tend to arrive under-adorned, and there are a whole slew of sides including, again predictably, German potato salad. The best part of Prime Meats is its quirkiness, and the general high quality of the food. I’m looking forward to going back.

Prime Meats proves a good date spot: chill and atmospheric.

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