Steakcraft: Hurricane Steak and Sushi's Porterhouse and American Wagyu Skirt


Behind the scenes of New York's premium dry-aged steaks. An in-depth look at the aging, cooking, and presentation of New York's premium dry-aged steaks from beef expert Nick Solares.

[Photographs: Nick Solares]

Steak Fact Sheet

Cuts: Porterhouse for two; American Wagyu skirt steak
Grade: Porterhouse USDA Prime; Skirt not graded
Breed: Porterhouse: Black Angus; Skirt: Cross breed of Japanese Wagyu and Black Angus cattle
Dry Aged? Porterhouse: Yes, 28 Days; Skirt: No
Pre-Cooked Weight: Porterhouse 40 oz.; Skirt: 8 oz.
Price: Porterhouse: $88; Skirt: $35
Price per Ounce: Porterhouse: $2.20; Skirt: $4.38/p>

"People thought it was actually a night club! They would get up on the bar and dance!" explained chef Patrick Lahens when asked why the Hurricane Club changed its name to Hurricane Steak and Sushi last month. When the Hurricane Club opened back in 2010, I reviewed it positively, but apparently not everyone understood that it was a restaurant and not a discotheque.

The name was changed to clarify things; the menu has been tweaked as well. "We cut down on the big dishes," which were intended for large groups to share, says Lahens. But the porterhouse for two remains on the menu—"It is one of our signature dishes." They sell as many as a dozen a night of the 40 oz. hunk of dry aged prime beef that is seasoned with kosher salt, pepper, and cane sugar before being seared. The sugar, an admittedly unorthodox ingredient, caramelizes nicely and doesn't add much in the way of sweetness to the steak. The meat is seared and sliced before being drizzled in a melted compound butter spiked with garlic, scallions, and Worcestershire sauce. It is then served with some watercress and, like most everything at Hurricane Steak and Sushi, a red orchid.

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Chef Patrick Lahens.

Lahens also wanted to feature the American Wagyu skirt steak. He was quick to point out that he uses the outside skirt, a preferable cut to the inside skirt. The outside skirt is the beef diaphragm proper, the inside skirt is actually fabricated from the flank. The outside tends to have a more even shape and more robust flavor. It is quite hard to find at retail markets because restaurants tend to purchase it in bulk.

Hurricane Steak and Sushi use Snake River Farms' "American Wagu" (a cross between Japanese Wagyu and Black Angus) skirt. The same salt, pepper, and sugar seasoning used on the porterhouse is applied and the steak, which is simply broiled and sliced against the grain. "I wanted to make sure people got the best experience." He recommends the chili garlic sauce as the perfect accompaniment to the steak.

See the steaks from start to finish in the slideshow »