Review: Texas Flame Steakhouse

Pueblo Park Mall
4535 S Padre Island Dr #33
Corpus Christi, TX 78411
Sun – Thur: 11am – 10:00pm
Fri – Sat: 11am – 11pm
Texas Flame Steakhouse is something of an institution in Corpus Christi, and as such has been through a couple of iterations that I’m aware of, including some menu changes, at least one of which I’m still not happy about.  It used to be called the Longhorn Steakhouse, one of two restaurants that shared that name (the other being the rechristened Ol’ Steakhouse Co.), and changed its name when the chain Longhorn Steakhouse came to town.  Somewhere along the way they dropped my favorite menu item, a 20+ oz sirloin steak.  Not something that was popular with me at all, as you might imagine.  That notwithstanding, the wife and I still enjoy going there from time to time.

On this afternoon, the wife was craving turkey and dressing, and since they have a Sunday turkey and dressing special, we were off.  Sadly, at least for the wife, by the time we got there and were ready to order, our waitress informed us that they were out of turkey and dressing.  This was just another of the strangely large amount of things they were out of.  We have a beverage preference for Diet Dr. Pepper, and they carry it, but today, they were out, so we had to settle for Diet Coke.  Not a good way to start the meal.  Then, of course, the aforementioned issue with the turkey and dressing.  Really, if you are going to take the time to print out a sheet with all your specials on it for the menu, you should probably make enough of them to last through dinner time.  Just an observation.  So we ordered an appetizer of fried mushrooms to snack on while the wife took a look at the menu and tried to decide on something else.  She settled on another of their specials which they had not yet run out of, the roasted brisket with au ju, and I chose the 16 oz. Ribeye with a baked potato and a side of french fries (yes, I love potatoes and no, one should probably not have that much starch in one sitting), followed by the New York style cheesecake.
To start, the fried mushrooms were ok.  Not great, not terrible, just ok.  They tasted fine, but they were fried in a gritty, almost corn bread style coating that came out like sandpaper and ripped up my mouth like Capt’n Crunch did when I was a kid (Always preferred the Crunchberries).  I’m sure that some people probably enjoy this style of coating, but I am not one of them.  They were properly cooked and tasted ok though, despite my coating preference.  By the time we were halfway through the mushrooms, the waitress had brought us croutons and the house sauce they serve them with.  This is the Texas Flame Steakhouse’s version of bread, chips or whatever free meal starter that various places give away before a meal.  The croutons are very enjoyable and we were happy that they had some.  They sometimes run out and our waitress had been unsure if they had any available when we were seated.  So it was pretty much one out of two on the appetizers.
Then our entrees were brought out.  So anyone that knows me or has read the blog for a while knows that I have issues with the current state of foodie culture in which if you are eating raw steak, you aren’t eating it “correctly”, whatever ridiculous thing that means.  Revisionist foodie garbage doesn’t change the truth and I”m tired of restaurants buying into the stupid.  The following is how steaks should be judged cooked:  Blue – slightly warm, mostly raw, Rare – warm all the way through, still mostly raw in the middle, medium-rare – cooked on the outside, pink though out, medium – thin line of pink, medium-well – cooked all the way though, no pink, Well Done – grey though out, some char on the outside.  That’s how it should be done.   I order my steak medium well because I want it cooked all the way through, but not burnt on the outside.  I never get it properly cooked.  Well, almost never.  Today was no exception.  My ribeye was medium at best.  Having said that, it was properly seasoned and tender.  I enjoyed it.  Unfortunately, my baked potato was old, unseasoned, and just not very good, even after adding butter, sour cream and salt.  The french fries were good though.  Golden and tasty after adding a little salt.  The wife ended up with oven roasted brisket and au ju, with a side of mashed potatoes and the soup.  I didn’t actually try any of her food, so I can’t comment as to its taste or quality.
I followed up with the meal with a slice of their New York style cheesecake, which they say is made in house.  I do have this cheesecake every time I go there because it is usually fantastic and I have recommended it to anyone that will listen in the past.  Today it was disappointing.  I don’t know if they changed the recipe, stopped making it in house, or I was just unlucky, but not only was the texture not up to their usual par, but it was also still a bit frozen in the middle.  Overall, I was not overly happy with it.  Hopefully, they have regained their form the next time I go by.
So, should you go to the Texas Flame Steakhouse?  Here is the run down on the whole thing.  The service was fast and friendly as always.  Our waitress did a great job and we were happy from that perspective.  Based just on this visit, I wouldn’t be able to recommend that you go, but as you probably have figured out, I’ve gone here off and on for more years than I care to admit to.  I will recommend them from the perspective that there will be visits that aren’t as good as others.  The service has always been good, but the food and availability can be hit or miss.  They do, however, more often that not offer up a solid steak that I enjoy having from time to time, so go by and try it out.  Just don’t go too late on Sunday if you want the turkey.

Texas Flame Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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