Lately Mr. AT and I have been bonkers for grilling. I love the ease of throwing together a meal and having Mr. AT's help, and I like to think he loves that whole primal man + fire thing. So we've been having our fair share of delicious steaks as of late, but still we were thrilled to have a chance to try out Ray's Killer Creek recently. Can't say that I get very often OTP for dinners not prepared by my fam, and I go even less often to high end steak restaurants because of their sky-high prices.
Given Mansell Rd. up in Alpharetta is choc-a-block with chain restaurants and mall shopping, it's nice to have a non-chain option, particularly one that's as upscale as Ray's Killer Creek. It's a large, open space, and on a Friday night was packed with well-heeled suburbanites, minus the screaming kiddos you'd find at the chains.
Mr. AT and I decided to go all out since our steakhouse dining is so rare. We started with two of the dishes our attentive, friendly waiter recommended - the crab cakes and the bbq shrimp. The waiter described the crab cakes as being different from the norm, but to be honest, they tasted exactly like I'd expect - good but nothing to write home about. It was the shrimp that knocked my socks off though. They were served in a divine beer butter sauce with toast that I could NOT stop dipping. The sauce was lick-it-off-the-plate good, but purely out of a sense of decorum, I resisted the urge.
My one steak complaint would be that there aren't a lot of size options, so if you want a ribeye, a pound is your only choice. I felt a bit piggish getting that much steak, but what can you do? Mr. AT opted for prime rib, which did offer more size choices, and he too opted for a heaping pound of meat (wow, that sounds kind of gross when I say it like that!)
The ribeye was well-seasoned and was prepared perfectly medium rare with a nice crust. The accompanying mashed red bliss potatoes were pretty standard, which means they were certainly tasty but not a highlight. Mr. AT's prime rib was oh so tender and served with a yummy horseradish sauce. The beef at Killer Creek is simple and well-prepared – it’s not going to surprise you, but when it comes to high-end steaks that’s not what you’re looking for.
I didn't come close to eating my entire entree, but we couldn't resist trying out a dessert, too. We opted to try out the key lime pie and the special, a caramel bread pudding, served in a cast iron dish. I have a profound and unexplainable hatred of citrus based desserts, so I’m not a good judge of the former, but Mr. AT seemed to love it. The latter was ooey gooey and very rich, and no surprise, we somehow found room in our overstuffed bellies for the better part of both.
In the end, our pre-tip bill for 2 apps, 2 entrees, 2 desserts and 2 glasses of wine was a pretty reasonable $120-something. Now that's pretty pricy for anytime dining, but Ray's Killer Creek is clearly a nicer dinner than the usual so it was actually much better than I'd expected. It's more a dinner out with the in-laws or upscale guy's night out than a "oh gee, where should we eat tonight" kind of pricing. If you forgo the full on gluttony we enjoyed, then you could get out of there for a $100 or so, and for so much (2 whole pounds of beef!), that's not too shabby. I hear their burger is killer, so if you want to try it out on the cheap for lunch, that's an option too!
I have vague memories of Ray's on the River being THE special occasion place to eat when I was young, so it's nice to see Ray is still creating classy dining experiences!
Pros: upscale vibe, gracious service, well-prepared, giant slabs o' beef, bbq shrimp sauce to-die-for
Cons: not many size choices on beef, so be prepared to be over-stuffed.
Ray's Killer Creek
1700 Mansell Rd.
Alpharetta, GA 30004