The FINANCIAL — More and more restaurants in Tbilisi are adding American Steak to their menus. It has become one of the most demanded dishes, restaurants owners say.
“We offer a real American steak,” said Tamar Vasadze, Owner of Oval, the five star restaurant in Tbilisi. “Beef for steak is imported from America, as real steak needs the beef of specially grown cows.”
“The first year we had an American head chef he trained all our cooks. Before opening the restaurant I was in New York to see how steakhouses work,” she added.
Steak is the main dish of the restaurant. Oval offers 4 type of beef steak and some other types also. The most popular are steak minion which costs 65 GEL (39 USD) and steak New York; its price is 80 GEL (48 USD). Another American dish – Colorado sheep ribs, costs 95 GEL (57 USD).
The restaurant was opened at the beginning of 2009 on Rkinis Rigi Street. The restaurant was aimed equally at foreigners and local people. But at that time more foreigners went to restaurants than Georgians.
“Currently 50 percent of our clients are Georgians,” Vasadze said, “and the second half are foreigners, but not tourists. They are foreigners who live in Georgia. Tourists tend to order more Georgian food. And they don’t pay so much for food. Some days we have even more Georgians. They are people of the middle class.”
Vera Steak House is an American-Georgian Restaurant on Kostava Avenue. 60 percent of the restaurant is owned by an American.
“It is kind of a guarantee that we serve real American cuisine,” said Vaja Nakhutsrishvili, Georgian co-owner of the restaurant. Most of our clients are foreigners: Americans and British.
“Our main dish is American steak,” Nakhutsrishvili said, “but Georgian cuisine competes quite strongly with it. We offer different types of steak. Prices range from 20 GEL (12 USD) up to 60 GEL (39 USD). A steak assortment costs 75 GEL (45 USD).”
The restaurant has about 20-50 clients daily.
“The number of clients depends on the day of the week and the season,” Nakhutsrishvili said. “Currently what we lack is recognition. Our restaurant needs some advertising to increase its popularity.”
Steak is also the leading dish of American cuisine in the bar Hadson and Hooker. Besides American food they offer Mexican and Georgian cuisine. The bar is located on Beliashvili Street.
“Half of our clients are foreigners, mostly Americans and Germans. The second half are Georgians,” Maia Beridze, Manager at Hadson and Hooker told The FINANCIAL. “When the restaurant was opened in 2009 it was aimed at foreigners and Georgians as well, like it is now.”
“Having American cuisine doesn’t mean that we are oriented only at Americans. On the contrary, more Americans order Georgian food and lots of Georgians come here for steak,” she added.
Steak in the bar Hadson and Hooker is cooked with Georgian beef. Recently the price of beef has increased in Georgia and they also had to increase the price of steak. Despite that steaks at Hadson and Hooker taste like real American ones, Beridzes claims.
Besides steak, the most popular dishes in the restaurants Oval and Hadson and Hooker are the Greek salad Caesar and different types of pizza.