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3. Benny’s Chop House

The sea scallops at Benny’s Chop House   Photo: Anna Knott

“I have to be honest: That’s not a great cocktail,” a server warned at the first sign of an ordering snafu. You don’t hear such forthcoming advice every day— especially not at a steak place as classy, if physically nondescript, as this three-year- old spot from Benny Siddu (Volare).

While some of the craft cocktails here may miss the mark (look to the wine list instead for treasures such as the 2010 Banshee Cabernet Sauvignon), the USDA prime steaks are spot-on. Siddu and his executive chef, Carlo Lamagna (former sous-chef of Perennial Virant), offer the usual wet- and dry-aged cuts. A third category features all-natural beef free of hormones and antibiotics straight from a private farm in Arizona: Sink your teeth into that buttery, impeccably seasoned 12-ounce New York strip and you can almost taste the farm-fresh TLC.

Manage to retain some stomach space for dessert? Beware the “ridiculously huge portions” of cakes and pies (per that same refreshingly honest server) and opt for a bowl of tangy housemade sorbet.

Perfect for: Conscientious beef eaters

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