Steaks that sizzle

C. Knight’s Steakhouse

The 12-ounce rib-eye sizzles with brown butter and is perfectly seasoned and tender with little pockets of broiled fat. A choice treat.

The 12-ounce rib-eye sizzles with brown butter and is perfectly seasoned and tender with little pockets of broiled fat. A choice treat.

PHOTO by amy bee

Good for: Celebrations, anniversaries or fancy date nights
Notable dishes: 24oz porterhouse, tapas menu
American, El Dorado Hills

C. Knight’s Steakhouse

2085 Vine St.
El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

(916) 235-1730

If you ever find yourself way out on Highway 50 past Folsom, but before the forest takes over, and you just so happen to have a wad of cash to wine and dine, indulge yourself at C. Knight’s Steakhouse.

The concept is classy comfort: aka enjoy yourself, but don’t take yourself too seriously. With charming wood-paneled walls adorned by various sized gold-plated mirrors, black-tufted booths, a full oak bar and an inviting dining area, this steakhouse is quaint, all the same.

Although C. Knight’s Steakhouse does offer non-beef menu options such as scampi, halibut and even a mysterious “Vegetarian Selection,” it’s a steakhouse. You should be here for the steak.

And C. Knight’s is serious about its steak with its simple selection of cuts from New York sirloin to porterhouse, all brought to the table on sizzling plates that are heated to 500 F and browns a generous scoop of butter that keeps the steak piping hot. It did not disappoint. The filet mignon, cooked medium rare, melted in my mouth instantly while the wagyu played opposites and put its meaty textures and bold, robust flavors front and center. At 6 ounces, the wagyu could add a few ounces for diners to truly luxuriate. A 12-ounce rib-eye cooked medium rare wowed the table with its perfectly seasoned tenderness and little pockets of broiled fat, which made the cut a choice treat.

Unlike some other steakhouses, C. Knight’s sides are not an afterthought. Served family-style, small but shareable plates were so savory that they outshone their boring menu names. Au Gratin delighted all with whole new potatoes covered in béchamel and cheese. The modestly named Seasoned Mushrooms were quite the showstopper, salted perfectly and sautéed with wine, scallion and garlic. The Green Phunque? Actually, it’s a great name for a creamy spinach concoction topped with gooey broiled cheese.

The appetizers, however, struck me as fussy, such as the Beignets de Fromage, a couple of overpowering fried blue cheese balls plated next to some fig jam, almonds and green apple slices. Luckily, C. Knight’s recently added a tapas menu with small plates including Tomato Saffron Egg, Kofta with mint gremolata, Beef Raviolo and House Chorizo & Tostones (nicely seasoned chorizo with fried plantain “chips"). Each were delicious and fun to taste test; no fussiness needed.

Most people know that good steak costs money and if they’re forking over mega cash, they expect a superior dining service. The waitstaff at C. Knight’s delivers on all fronts. Attentive and full of information about the menu, wine pairings and cocktails, the waiters, runners, bussers and hosts all exuded professionalism. I neither felt adrift in a sea of other patrons nor bothered with constant check-ins and refills. Like Goldilocks, the attention ratio was just right.