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Trying Tri Tip

September 7, 2010

Tri Tip Grill in Rockefeller Center.

Once again steered by the folks at Midtown Lunch, I decided to try Tri Tip Grill, which they had been raving about on that blog. It’s in the downstairs food court.

Each sandwich is made to order, so after making your selection there can be a bit of a wait – I can imagine that wait could be more significant with a longer line. As you can see, though, there wasn’t much of a line when I arrived.

For my first order, I asked the nice woman behind the counter what was popular, and wound up getting their “Big Buck Tri Tip”  sandwich.

The Big Buck Tri Tip sandwich.

As you can see, when I unboxed it back at my desk, it was looking pretty sexy. According to their website, it’s 6 ounces of thinly sliced tri tip, caramelized onions, and it comes with an au jus dipping sauce. That explains the massive bun, which you can see below.

To quote the famous Wendy's commercial: it's a very big bun.

Now as part of my diet, I am generally avoiding the dread white flour, and therefore things like buns, bread and pasta. Look at the size of that bun: it’s very substantial. However, I have to give them credit: it is the perfect texture for sopping up the au jus without disintegrating or dripping. It acts like a sponge and in fact is delicious and tasty. However, no-one gets this sandwich for the bun – it’s all about the meat. The meat is very tasty and well prepared.

The meat is very tasty and well prepared.

Admit it: the meat looks pretty good. That’s because it is. Tri Tip takes its name from the cut of beef they favor. Again, according to their website, theirs comes from Certified Angus Beef and is aged for 21 days before being marinated, seasoned, charred and smoked. I found it to be fresh and tasty, a bit salty, but having a wonderful tender quality. Cut so thin, you occassionally run into a slight “stringiness” issue, but very rarely.  The caramelized onions were what you expect.

Now, looking at the portion sizes, I realized that spending too much time at Tri Tip would be a great way to utterly destroy whatever progress I’ve made as a result of this diet: even their salads looked pretty massive. At $7.99 for the Big Buck, I didn’t feel particularly ripped off at all. It’s plenty of food for lunch.

I’ll go back again when I’m a little more flexible about my diet – the Roadhouse Buck (tri tip cut thick, ranch sauce, onions and bleu cheese) sounds delightful. All in all, it’s a good spot, especially if you’re in the mood for some tasty beef goodness.

Tri Tip Grill

Rockefeller Center, Concourse Level
New York, NY 10112
(212) 664-1003

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