Rounding up the Austin steak house scene
Reviewed by Claudia Alarcón, Fri., Jan. 14, 2005
Wildfire812 S. Austin Ave., Georgetown, 512/869-3473
Monday-Saturday, 11am-10pm; Sunday, 10am-9pm
Housed in a historic building around the corner from Georgetown's Main Square, Wildfire is a Southwest-influenced steak house with a unique menu of intriguing appetizers, soups, salads, pastas, and oak-grilled meats and seafood. The low-lit, elegant bar and the simply decorated dining room are comfortable and inviting. On a recent night, we sampled tender Macadamia-Fried Calamari ($6) served with a zesty ranchero salsa and a poblano cream sauce for dipping. The rich onion soup ($5) warmed us up, although the broth was perhaps a bit salty. An oak-grilled certified Angus bone-in rib eye ($25) came drizzled with a flavorful demi-glace, slices of grilled portobello mushroom and onion, and chunky mashed red potatoes studded with grilled Anaheim peppers. From their many game selections, we chose the Bison Strip Loin ($23), served over basil-jalapeño mashed potatoes and a side of tender-crisp green beans in a savory butter sauce. Both meats were tender and perfectly cooked to temperature, although the announced pepita crust on the bison was missing. The signature dessert is the Bananas Wildfire ($7), grilled and glazed with brandy and brown sugar, served over vanilla ice cream, topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce. All plates were beautifully garnished, and the portions were just right. Wildfire boasts a very complete wine list, including one of the best selections of Texas wines in the state definitely the best I have seen in our area. We enjoyed the nonpretentious, cozy atmosphere and the casual yet excellent service. Wildfire was the surprise hit of my steak house visits.