The Capital Grille is an upscale fine-dining establishment with various locations throughout the U.S. The restaurant specializes in dry-aged steaks and fresh seafood. In addition, it offers a variety of entrees with options for everyone, including soups, salad, and poultry. The restaurant also boasts of an award-winning wine list with a selection of over 350 world-class wines.
The establishment prides itself on its steaks, which are custom-aged in house for 18 to 24 days. The steaks are then hand cut by the in-house butcher. The fresh seafood is also a popular selection. The restaurant offers both lunch and dinner menus, as well as separate dessert and bar menus. The chain aims to provide its customers with an exceptional experience of elegance and fine-dining.
Appetizers and Soups
|Clam Chowder (cup)||$9.00|
|Clam Chowder (bowl)||$11.00|
|French Onion Soup (cup)||$8.00|
|French Onion Soup (bowl)||$10.00|
|Shrimp Cocktail (5)||$15.00|
|Pan-Fried Calamari with Hot Cherry Peppers||$14.00|
|Wedge with Bleu Cheese and Applewood Smoked Bacon||$12.00|
|Maine Lobster Salad||$19.00|
|Fresh Mozzarella, Tomato, Basil with 15-Year Ages Balsamic||$13.00|
|Mediterranean Salad with Marinated Chicken||$16.00|
|Caesar Salad with Roasted Chicken Breast and a Parmesan Tuile||$17.00|
|Chopped Salad with Chilled Shrimp||$18.00|
|Seared Salmon with Avocado, Mango and Tomato Salad||$17.00|
|The Capital Grille "Cobb" Salad with Sliced Tenderloin||$19.00|
|The Grille's Signature Cheeseburger||$17.00|
|Lobster and Crab Burger with House Tartar Sauce||$19.00|
|Ribeye Steak Sandwich with Caramelized Onions and Havarti||$19.00|
|Arugula, Watermelon Salad with Feta|
|Field Greens Salad|
|Bone-In Dry Ages Sirloin Steak (14oz)||$26.00|
|Filet Mignon (8oz)||$28.00|
|Seared Citrus Glazed Salmon||$19.00|
|Sushi-Grade Sesame Seared Tuna with Gingered Rice||$29.00|
|Chilean Sea Bass with Heirloom Tomatoes and Saffron Tomato Broth||$27.00|
|Seared Halibut with Roasted Artichoke, Potatoes, Corn and Mustard Vinaigrette||$26.00|
|Sliced Filed Mignon with Cipollini Onions and Wild Mushrooms||$31.00|
|Housemade Grapefruit Soda||$3.50|
|Fresh Squeezed Mint Lemonade||$3.50|
|Fresh Brewed Iced Tea, Carafe of Simple Syrup||$3.50|
Glass of White
|Hess Collection, Napa, Chardonnay, 2011||$13.00|
|Greg Norman, Eden, Australia, Chardonnay, 2012||$11.00|
|Indaba, South Africa, Chardonnay, 2012||$8.00|
|La Cana, Rias Baixas, Albarino, 2012||$12.00|
|SeaGlass, Santa Barbara, Sauvignon Blanc, 2011||$10.00|
|Kim Crawford, Marlborough, NZ, Sauvignon Blanc, 2012||$9.00|
|Terrazze Della Luna, Trentino, Pinot Grigio, 2012||$10.00|
|Santa Julia, Mendoza, Argentina, Pinot Grigio, 2012||$8.00|
|Ponzi Oregon, Pinot Gris, 2012||$10.00|
|Selbach, Mosel, Riesling, Qba, 2011||$9.00|
|Montevina, Amador, County, White Zinfandel, 2012||$6.00|
Glass of Red
|Arrowood, Sonoma, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011||$21.00|
|Justin, Paso Robles, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011||$13.00|
|H3, Horse Heaven Hills, WA, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010||$13.00|
|Louis Martini, Sonoma, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2011||$9.00|
|Belle Glos, Meiomi, Sonoma/Monterey/Santa Barbara, Pinot Noir, 2012||$15.00|
|Mark West, California, Pinot Noir, 2012||$8.00|
|Cryptic, California, Zin/Cab/Petite Sirah, 2011||$11.00|
|Chateau Ste. Michelle Columbia Valley, Merlot, 2011||$11.00|
|Catena, Vista Flores, Mendoza, Malbec, 2010||$10.00|
|Edmeades, Mendocino, Zinfandel, 2010||$10.00|
|Ferarri-Carano, Siena, Sonoma, Sangiovese/Malbec, 2010||$9.00|
|Colby, California, Cab/Zin/Shiraz/Merlot/Pettite Sirah, 2011||$8.00|
The Capital Grille was established in 1990 by Edward P. “Ned” Grace III, who opened the original restaurant in Providence, Rhode Island. The location was quite a surprise due to the contrast of the posh, upscale restaurant with the run-down surroundings of downtown Providence. The economy was also experiencing a slight recession during that time. Nevertheless, Mr. Grace’s vision proved to be a worthwhile endeavor.
The chain expanded to locations in Washington D.C. and Boston by 1996 and then to four more locations in 1997. Today, there are various locations throughout the nation in the following states: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Georgia, Connecticut, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, Texas, California, Massachusetts, District of Columbia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Virginia, Wisconsin and Washington.
Mr. Grace eventually sold the chain to Longhorn Steaks, Inc., which was a part of RARE Hospitality International Inc. The Capital Grille was then acquired by Darden Restaurants in 2007 as part of the acquisition of RARE Hospitality International. The Capital Grille currently operates under the Specialty Restaurant Group division of Darden Restaurants.
The establishment has had its share of setbacks, which include racial discrimination and wage violation lawsuits filed by employees in 2012, as well as employee protests to the Pittsburgh location opening on Thanksgiving without holiday pay in 2013. On the other hand, the chain has also had its share of awards and accolades, such as “The 2012 Traveler’s Choice Award, TripAdvisor”; “Best Steakhouse, 2012, Orange County”; “Best Plate, 2012, Uncorked!”; “America’s Most Popular High-end Restaurant, 2011 and 2012, Urbanspoon”; “Best of Award Excellence, 2010 and 2012, Wine Spectator”; “Certification of Recognition, 2012 Washington Wine”; “Reader’s Choice Best Splurge Restaurant, 2012 South Jersey Magazine”; and the Best American Cuisine Top 50 List, 2010, Open Table”.
The Capital Grille chain is quite popular. The ambiance is generally pleasant with dim lighting and warm greetings. The decor may be considered by some as outdated and there is a slightly elevated noise level due to the high number of patrons enjoying the fine-dining experience. As with all upscale restaurants, reservations are highly recommended especially on a Friday or Saturday evening. With reservations, customers will more than likely not experience any wait time. While the hours vary by location, dinner is generally served every evening at 5:00p.m. and lunch is served Mondays to Fridays until 4:00p.m. Some locations may serve lunch on weekends. The establishment also provides private dining rooms and customized menus for meetings and events. The restaurant displays excellent hygiene and customer service. The staff is welcoming and servers are very pleasant, attentive and helpful with answering questions and providing suggestions for choices from the menu.
As a high-end, upscale restaurant, it is no surprise that the menu prices are more on the expensive side. The prices seem to vary slightly according to location. The dinner menu includes appetizers ranging from $16 to $99, soups at $9 to $11, and salads at approximately $13 to $18. The seafood entrees range from $35 to $43 and the steaks are around $44 to $51. The menu offers some variety, so if someone does not eat beef or seafood they can always select another option such as the herb roasted chicken or the lamb rib chops. There is also the option of the “gluten sensitive dining” menu to meet the needs of those with gluten-restricted diets. Chefs are also able to prepare vegetarian dishes if requested to do so.
There are a variety of side dishes such as lobster mac ‘n’ cheese, parmesan truffle fries, au gratin potatoes, roasted cauliflower with curry oil, mashed potatoes, and Brussels sprouts, which range from $9 to $16. All side dishes come in portions that are large enough to share. In addition to soups and salads, the lunch menu includes burgers priced at $17 to $19 as well as steak and seafood from $19 to $32. Desserts such as cheesecake, chocolate cake, apple cobbler, coconut cream pie, and handcrafted ice-cream have a price range of $9 to $11. The Bar menu includes additional appetizers priced between $10 to $19 and cocktails between $12 and $14.
While the prices may be considered high, the portions are hefty and the food quite delicious. The steak of course is a favorite, particularly the rib-eye, which seems to have gained acclaim due to its dry-aged preparation. One of the Chef’s suggestions is the seared tenderloin with butter poached lobster tails. Another Chef’s suggestion is the signature porcini rubbed bone-in rib eye with 15-year aged balsamic. Recommended seafood items include the Chilean sea bass and the seared citrus-glazed salmon. The lobster dishes are also popular. The calamari, lobster and crab cakes, and the clam chowder are recommended for starters. Favorite side-dishes include the lobster mac ‘n’ cheese, mashed potatoes, and roasted Brussels sprouts. The cheesecake is always a popular dessert choice. Overall, the service is great and the food is quite tasty.