Dine & Dish

Danielle Wong Moores reviews restaurants bi-weekly | Contact Danielle

Snug offers upscale dining in casual setting

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I’ve written before that I don’t order steak at a restaurant, but that doesn’t mean I won’t steal a bite off of Noah’s plate.

The Snug Steak & Grill's Aloha cakes plate is a colorful array that includes two seafood cakes, garlic mashed potatoes and vibrant steamed vegetables.  DEEPIKA RAO/STAFF
DEEPIKA RAO/STAFF
The Snug Steak & Grill's Aloha cakes plate is a colorful array that includes two seafood cakes, garlic mashed potatoes and vibrant steamed vegetables.

In a typical sampling situation, I say it tastes too bloody and I don’t like it. However, a recent taste of Angus filet mignon could turn me into a full-fledged carnivore.

The Snug Steak & Grill on Davis Road in Augusta is a family-owned business that is true to its name – a comfortable and warm atmosphere reminiscent of a lodge in the mountains. Lots of forest green and burgundy colors, honey-colored wood tones, exposed brick and soft yellow light ensconce the space that’s situated next to a bottle shop owned by the same family.

On our visit, we were seated in a cozy booth in full view of the big, U-shaped bar. The glow that bounced off the bar’s ceiling lined with glasses added ambience.

Open for almost 20 years, the Snug has a menu that specializes in steak, with a few burgers, seafood and other items available. Entrees start at $16, with nightly specials. Monday is open special night, when any of the week’s specials are available.

Enough to make a steak-lover’s eyes grow wide are the menu choices of New York strip, prime rib, rib eye and filet mignon. They come in different sizes and with an assortment of optional frills such as blue cheese, sauteed onions and lump crab or shrimp.

The entrees come with bread and a salad, with a few small details that elevate the first course. The vegetables are served in a big steel bowl family-style and include sliced white mushrooms, which I love but rarely find in a typical house salad. Also, the server brought out chilled salad plates to ensure a vibrant and fresh flavor.

For dinner, I ordered the Aloha cakes, two thick seafood patties made of crunchy red pepper, onion, celery, crab and jazzed up with mahi mahi. The entree and sides of mashed potatoes and steamed green beans, waxy beans and carrots surrounded a small dish of red pepper aioli.

The tasty, well-seasoned cakes had a crunchy, and slightly charred, exterior that gave way to a rich and creamy center where big pieces of sweet crab were plentiful. The vegetables in the cake were crisp and brought their own flavor to the party.

The potatoes were chunky and minimally mashed with the skins still on, which balanced a rich garlic flavor. The vegetables were only slightly steamed and salted, which I appreciated as a complement to everything else on the plate.

For the record, my dinner was delectable, and I enjoyed every bite. However, my obligatory piece of Noah’s steak blew me away. The Black ’n Blue 11-ounce filet mignon was slathered in a blueberry and port wine reduction and topped with blue cheese crumbles. It was sweet, savory, juicy and robust. No bloody taste here, just succulent red meat that melted away. Go figure – it would take filet mignon for me to like a bite of steak.

The Snug is a tucked-away gem for special-occasion dining, where I had the best meal I’ve ever eaten next to a liquor store.

ORDER UP

WHERE: The Snug Steak & Grill; 240 Davis Road, Augusta

HOURS: 5 p.m. until, Monday through Saturday

SECOND HELPING: (706) 863-1118, www.thesnug.net


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