Sunday, May 19, 2013

Review: Insignia

Finally made it to Insignia. Everyone who eats there loves it and says, "Oh, you have to go!"

Hey, guess what? Those people have no idea what they're talking about.

I've been to Bryant & Cooper several times, Capital Grille, and other good steakhouses on Long Island. Those places are overpriced, but at least the food is decent. I knew I was going to get ripped off at Insignia, but I thought I'd at least have a good-ish meal--or maybe very good. It wasn't good-ish.  It was horrible (for the money). It was about the quality of a J&R's Steakhouse meal.

The place is big and dark and noisy, with pounding music. Don't expect to have an intimate conversation there. The menus are one-page deals and laminated (like a J&R's, if I remember). Looking back, that was the first red flag.

Appetizers were Caesar salad ($10) and the crab cake ($16). The Caesar salad was about the quality you'd get at a diner. The crab cake was terrible. It had green onions in it (huh?) and a flavor I couldn't place (cumin? curry?) that completely overpowered any crab flavor. It also had julienned carrots on the top, which made no sense.

I got a ribeye ($46), which was a thin cut. It was cooked fine, but I can cook them fine, too, and I like a thicker cut.

There is one item on the menu which is by bar the biggest ripoff, and that is the broiled lobster tail for $44. Lobster tail. That's it. No sides, nothing. So, of course, my girlfriend got the lobster tail. She liked it, but how do you mess up a lobster tail?

I'd say it was a 6 oz. tail. And you know what? You can get one at Waldbaum's for $10.

The menu is a la carte, so sides are extra, but they feed two people. We got hash browns ($10) and asparagus ($10). The asparagus was nothing special. The hash browns were salty as hell and tiny, which was weird. You have to eat them with a spoon. I've never seen anything like it.

I only had iced tea and a cappuccino. The girlfriend got two cosmos, $15 each, which is not unusual.

Tax and tip came to $205.00.

Bottom line:  you can get the same quality food at a J&R's steakhouse for $50.00.

Crab Cake

Caesar Salad

Lobster Tail

Ribeye Steak

6 oz. lobster tail from Waldbaum's for $9.99

 2 out of 5 stars

610 Nesconset Highway
Smithtown, NY 11787


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