Destination Dining in Cleveland: Marble Room Steaks & Raw Bar
Marble Room Steaks & Raw Bar | 623 Euclid Ave | Cleveland, OH
The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry. I can attest to that. As I’ve mentioned before, I have a few weeks off before starting my new job at Elk & Elk. So, what better way to make use of that time than to plan a brief getaway.
Tiffany and I thought Peek’n Peak Resort in Clymer, New York would make for a nice little trip. It’s only two hours away, we could do a little snow tubing, take part in some hiking, go swimming, relax in a hot tub, check out the on-site restaurants, etc. Oh, and it’s dog friendly! Tiffany, (our dog) Biscuit and I hopped in the car and headed to New York.
Everything started off well enough. Biscuit was an angel in the car. The check-in process was smooth. We enjoyed a nice walk on the property. Then things took a turn.
The snow tubing area was closed, as were most of the resort’s restaurants. The heater in the room blew out cold air. The refrigerator sounded like a jet engine. Oh, and I did I mention that the dog refused to be left alone in the room? The moment Tiffany and I left to go swimming, he barked like there was no tomorrow.
Tiffany ended up staying in the room with Biscuit the entire day. He growled at every noise on the street, stayed up until midnight and woke us up at 5 a.m.
The moral of the story? I paid $150 to swim alone for an hour while my wife babysat our dog in a 500-square-foot hotel room. Good times.
Upon returning to our condo in Broadview Heights, I decided Tiffany and I deserved a treat. We needed to have a unique experience … to do something different. As you know from reading this blog, we love exploring Northeast Ohio’s dining scene. What better time, then, to check out what is arguably the most-hyped and well-known restaurant in Cleveland? We were headed to Marble Room Steaks and Raw Bar.
Housed in the former National City Bank building, Marble Room sits on Euclid Avenue between East 4th and East 9th Street. Upon entering, we were taken aback by the breathtaking scenery—gold ceilings, velvet booths, decorative art, marble columns, intricate chandeliers, a quartz bar and an impressive wine refrigerator.
Fun fact—many of the original bank design elements have been repurposed at Marble Room: one of the original vaults is used for private parties; the legs of check-cashing tables are used for seating in the bar area; and a National City Bank plaque hangs on the building’s exterior.
Focused and expensive, Marble Room’s dinner menu features oysters, shellfish, sushi/sashimi, salads, fish, steaks, poultry and chops. Notable items include Ossetra caviar, a surf-n-turf roll, spaghetti with lobster, and porterhouse and tomahawk steaks.
Now, keep in mind that I’m temporarily unemployed. So, the question became how to enjoy a unique downtown experience without crippling my wallet. The answer? Eat at the bar and order off the lounge menu! Side note: The bar still had Christmas Ale on tap. That’s a win!
We started our evening off with complimentary fresh bread and an order of truffle fries—both hit the mark. Next were our main courses. I splurged for diver sea scallops while Tiffany ordered yellowfin tuna tacos.
Though small, the scallops (four total) were good—I savored their sweet, buttery flavor as well as the accompanying medley of barley risotto, asparagus and cauliflower. One small gripe is that they were a bit salty for my liking. Tiffany enjoyed her tacos for the most part, as the tuna was fresh and the shells were crispy. Garlic yogurt and kimchi salsa served as effective complements to the dish. Her only “issue” was that the tuna was a bit stringy.
No complaints about the service. Three different bartenders waited on us—while not overly friendly, each was polite and knowledgeable. It was fun to watch them make specialty drinks, especially the ones that involved a butane torch.
In the center of downtown, Marble Room doesn’t have a parking lot. Options for parking include valet, street meters or nearby garages.
Truth be told, the food didn’t quite meet our expectations. Coming from the guy who raved about Chili’s, that may sound funny. My point is this: the food at Marble Room was very good. (And yes, it’s much better than Chili’s, lol.) It’s just that different restaurants have different expectations. Because of the prices at Marble Room, I was expecting to be wowed.
Overall, I’m still glad we visited. I could argue that the décor and ambiance are worth the price of admission alone. To me, Marble Room is about more than the food—it’s about a unique experience, a remarkable atmosphere and a piece of local history. Whether it’s for lunch, a drink at the bar, food in the lounge or a full-on dinner, I recommend a visit. You deserve it. Cheers!
Coming Tuesday: Happy hour at Hyde Park!