- 750 Hollywood Drive, Charles Town, WV, 25414
- (800) 795-7001
- Overall User Rating:
- (0 ratings)
- Sunday: 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Wed.-Thu. 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat. 5 p.m.-11 p.m.
- Official Web Site:
While Hollywood Casino brought Vegas-style gambling and epic buffets right within D.C.'s reach, one thing missing was a taste of Sin City's famous five-star dining. That all changes with the recent opening of their Final Cut Steakhouse, a decidedly upscale yet casual eatery that rivals any carnivore hangouts the District has to offer.
Though there are Final Cut locations in other Hollywood Casinos throughout the U.S., the Charles Town property has its own unique and carefully thought-out menu built upon seasonal, locally sourced ingredients -- the result of a 20-page brainstorm that was whittled down over two months of tastings. (Tough job, we know.) Under the tutelage of Executive Chef Brian Collins and Chef de Cuisine Christian Evans, everything is prepared from scratch, in-house daily. And that includes treats from a pastry chef born and trained in Paris.
Plenty of restaurants boast seasonal menus and have talented people in the kitchen, but what further sets this new venue apart is their insistence on using all USDA Prime Beef, which is considered the top 1% of meat in the country. Aged up to four weeks and coming only from corn fed cows, this quality beef is atypical for even the steakhouses you would consider high-end. Also rare is Final Cut's bone-in filet and bone-in ribeye options. Though two of the most costly proteins on the menu (yet fair considering the 14 oz. and 20 oz, portion sizes), the unusual inclusion of the bone packs in extra flavor and marbling for an incredibly juicy and tasty steak. And for a simplicity that showcases the meat, the restaurant's steaks are broiled at 1600° with only salt and peppercorns, which gives each cut a nice crust that seals in all the good stuff.
To go along with such a fine piece of meat, you need a good wine and Final Cut has an ever-growing selection of over 300 varieties, both old and new world, spearheaded by manager and certified wine educator (and soon to be sommelier) Chris Harmon. There's a glass or bottle to be paired with any menu item (Harmon holds regular classes for the staff to help them make informed suggestions) and, with bottles ranging from $24 to over $700, something in everyone's price range. However, to further help the selection process, Final Cut is again doing things a little differently with a high tech iPad wine list. This app, the only one of its kind in the greater D.C. area, allows guests to view the full list of wines, cocktails, beer and spirits electronically, sort by country, varietal, price and other designators, as well as suggest pairings for any given entrée item. (A great touch for wine newbies too timid to ask for help.)
And now on to the food! Metromix was able to sample some of Final Cut's best offerings and while I'm sure you would love to read along as we describe each dish, how about we just show you? Click below to check out our gallery, where we'll give you a play-by-play of each dish, from Kobe beef sliders and seafood apps to succulent steaks and decadent desserts.
Atmosphere: Though located in the middle of the casino, Final Cut is surprisingly removed from the hustle and bustle outside. There's a very quiet and elegant vibe inside that feels refined but relaxed. No quick turnovers or rushed service by the wait staff, and the music selection is equally welcoming. (You had us a Nat King Cole.) After a couple minutes, you'll forget you're in a casino.
Decor: Keeping with cinematic theme of the casino, Final Cut is filled with classic Celebrity portraits (Rita Hayworth, Jimmy Stewart, Katherine Hepburn) and Hollywood memorabilia from Tom Cruise, Sandra Bullock, Sophia Loren and more. The interior decoration is all art-deco, with sleek wood walls and an elegant painted ceiling. It's almost like a very classy Planet Hollywood.
Staff: The wait staff was friendly and knowledgeable about the food and the wine, as you'd expect from an establishment of this caliber. However, we were pleasantly surprised at just how excited many of them seemed to be about the menu -- eager to know what you thought and engage in a little friendly debate about the best cut of meat.
Drinks: In addition to the aforementioned 300+ bottles of wine, cocktails and beer (and let's not forget about that iPad wine list), the restaurant plans on expanding its selection of spirits shortly. You can also relax in their bar-lounge near the entrance.
Groups: The restaurant is available for parties of all sizes, from casual lunches to business meetings. Although there's no specific room for large groups, sections can easily be roped off for privacy.
The Damage: With steaks averaging $40, if you were to go all out (appetizers, sides, desserts and drinks), $70 a person isn't inconceivable. It's not a cheap night out, but you could do just as bad in downtown D.C. and, given their large portion sizes, at least you'll leave Final Cut with plenty to take home.
Dress Code: Surprisingly, given the quality of food and service, casual dress is fine. Jeans and a nice shirt are no problem.
-Before you enter, check out the giant touchscreen on the wall, which lets you flip through the menu, wine list, and cocktails and shows you pictures of what you can expect.
-Don't think the 20 oz. ribeye is enough? Give the massive 40 oz. porterhouse a shot. It's made for two to share, but Chef Evans says a surprising number of guests have tackled it on their own (and won).
-And if you think the iPad wine list is cool, stay tuned for more high-tech additions. Plans include an interactive whiskey menu -- a map of Kentucky that lets you explore the state and pick your bourbon by location.
Bottom Line: While they're just getting started, Final Cut already has more to offer than Morton's, Capital Grille and other upscale D.C. steakhouses with rival prices. And with bigger portions and better quality ingredients, the cost seems reasonable for spcial occasions or a day trip to the races. (The distance to Hollywood Casino is surprisingly not that far either; less than an hour from the Metromix offices in Tenleytown.)