East Bank Club has had a restaurant for 30 years. But only for the last 2 have they given a gosh-darn. They have a web site, they buy advertising, they hire professional wait staff. They actually seem like they care which is strange for a group that banks 70M/yr no matter how bad they are.
When one is as old and rich as Dan Levin and partners, one cares very little indeed about petty things like incline benches or food-service. Why should they when they have morons like the author paying them 2Gs/yr for no reason other than the 5 or 6 days/yr he can use the sun-deck? That’s roughly $400/visit. And with drinks, it’s more like $1000. Not a bad price tag. Hell, if I charged idiots those sums, I wouldn’t give a flying rodent bottom about sillines like exercise equipment or friendly service. I wouldn’t fear the XSport Fitness clubs that manage, for $40/mo to have the best equipment, the largest spaces, the hugest dudes, the best smoothies and free parking. Nah – I’d be old and rich and white and would tell all the haters like me to go elsewhere. And get bent. So one can imagine my surprise when, after a 4 year hiatus, I went to the re-designed restaurant on prime-rib night, ordered one rare, and actually got it that way.
In ages and ages past, the restaurant (which never had a proper name) would routinely run out of its special dinner entrée around 7 PM. This must have been economical because dinner started at 5:30 PM, the geriatric crowd was fed by 6, changing into their yellow pants to go cruising for Russian hookers at Tavern or Jilly’s. The only problem was, for those of us that actually work out, the fact that we’d be roped in for a special and be obligated to swill the regular. This was unacceptable. But with the passing of Hubbard Street Grill there were few options.
As any diner worth his/her sea salt knows: the difference between a 2-star meal and 4 is service. Everyone in Chicago gets their meat from Randolph Street and everything else from Sysco. The difference is made by what is thrown away before being put in front of the hungry, by how a plate is presented, and by how friendly and attentive is the person presenting it. Thus, last night was a home run. Or, by the aforementioned count a triple. But that doesn’t sound as good. Which is why it helps the author of sport metaphor to know what the sam-hill he/she is talking about.
Anyway, we came for prime-rib special and prime-rib special we got. Rare. Like our pre-fire ancestors used to eat. That’s more nostalgic than accurate since fire came before the cow but you get my drift. It was excellent! It was as good as I remember the few times I actually managed to score some before the male-enhancement crowd. It was so good that I didn’t actually have room for desert. For me, this is remarkable.
So – East Bank Club – congratulations. You can add my $120/month to your 70M annual profit margin. Now all you need is a leg sled and we’ll be friends again.