When the waiter took out a steak on a trolley, I couldn’t believe what I saw.
“Oh, my God, how can that be possible?” I said to my male companions. It was almost three inches thick with a surface area comparable to an 11-inch tablet.
There must have been at least one-and-a-half catty of meat, excluding the T-shaped bone in the middle. This portion couldn’t be processed by two stomachs.
“That could be for a table of five. The three of us should be able to finish an order for two,” my friend said.
But when the couple across from our table were having a 1.5-inch-thick steak, we went silent with our verdict, especially after we had finished our starter salad and spaghetti with tomato sauce.
In Florence, Italy, it is common sense to enjoy an order of Fiorentina steak. We went to the most renowned steakhouse.
Although I had mentally worked up a huge appetite, I was shocked.
The three of us — three Hong Kong men — could at best finish half of it. Feeling ashamed for wasting food, we begged the waiter to take the leftover away quickly.
In contrast, the couple finished off everything neat and tidy, leaving only a bare T-bone.
In fact, the perfect standard cut of a Fiorentina steak should be two or three inches thick, meaning what we had ordered had already been downsized.
And the waiter would not care to ask how we would like the steak done because by default it has to be medium.
Fiorentina steak is taken from the loin of a young heifer raised no more than 16 months.
Given the supreme cut, the medium-cooked beef came with a rich texture — soft, tender and mildly tough.
As it was grilled by charcoal fire, the steak went well with heavy-bodied red wine.
The meal was sumptuous and it was a shame we couldn’t take everything.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Feb. 15.
Translation by Darlie Yiu
[Chinese version 中文版]
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