The best steakhouses in Canberra

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A T-bone steak from Capitol Bar and Grill, one of Canberra’s most recommended steakhouses. Photo: QT Canberra.

As Australians, we are no strangers to the humble flame. Our multicultural lineage pays homage to the use of heat in all its glory. From Argentina to Italy and everywhere in between, we have adopted techniques and mastered their application to suit our home-grown produce.

When it comes to meat, Australia produces some of the best beef around. Our cattle farms are renowned the globe over for their high-quality produce and ethical practices. And while meat consumption has been given a rough trot in recent years, a loyal following remains.

Whether your preference is blue, medium rare or well done, you have come to the right place.

As the name suggests, a steakhouse is a restaurant that specialises in serving steaks. Once the domain of suited executives in muffled conversations, steakhouses have evolved considerably. Modern steakhouses offer lively environments, delectable accompaniments, and even vegetarian options!

So, get those knives ready, we are taking a tour of the best steakhouses that Canberra has to offer.

What makes a great steakhouse?

  • Quality produce. The quality of produce is one of the key indicators setting mediocre steakhouses apart from the best. With restaurant-grade produce literally sitting at our doorstep, there are no excuses for anything but quality. Look for steakhouses that offer a variety of premium cuts with a paddock-to-plate philosophy. Your server should be well versed on what the animal was fed and where it was sourced. Moreover, any details around the cut, and ageing time and method, should be easily offered. The best steakhouses will feature a selection of cuts to cater to personal preferences.
  • Cooked to perfection. There is no hiding when it comes to cooking steak. The best steakhouses embrace this challenge, presenting perfectly cooked morsels every time. Indeed, each restaurant will have its own unique way of preparing and presenting steak. Though many will offer the opportunity for their patrons to customise this. From rare to medium and well done, and every iteration in between, the kitchen should cook accordingly.
  • Perfect pairings. While steak will be the hero dish for many, the finest steakhouses also offer a selection of side dishes and condiments to enhance the meat’s flavour. Look for a balanced offering including carbohydrates and greens, along with any condiments to your liking. Great steakhouses also understand the importance of the complete dining experience. As such, they pair each course accordingly, creating a culinary journey with the steak front and centre. The same ethos often applies with the beverage selection, which makes light work for diners.
  • Sizzling service. Industry-leading service is often a hallmark of great steakhouse. From the telephone manner upon booking to the farewell at exit, the best steakhouses have service that sizzles. These establishments should be staffed by the best in the business, with years of experience and a flair for communication. Not only should your hosts be friendly, they should know steak – and the menu – inside out.
  • Warm and welcoming. While a great steak can be found in any location, the best steakhouses offer a warm and welcoming environment. Whether it is the notable decor, buzz of other diners or the music in your ears, look for something memorable. A lively atmosphere works wonders on the overall dining experience, so find a venue that matches your mood.

The best steakhouses in Canberra

RiotACT’s editorial team has combed through 20 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.

To be listed in our Best of Canberra series, each business needs to have consistently received positive feedback on RiotACT and Facebook as well as maintained a minimum average of 4/5 stars on Google.

The Alby

The Alby

The Alby, spanning close to 1,000 square metres, is Woden’s largest local—for dining on great food, enjoying a drink, and playing fun games.

On the ground floor of the Albemarle Building off Furzer Street, The Alby was designed by Capezio Copeland and developed by DOMA.

The Alby’s Bar Dining space is famous for its Butcher Block premium steaks. The menu includes a Brooklyn Valley Black Angus grass-fed T-bone, 500 grams with a marble score of 3+. Just as succulent is the Jack’s Creek grass fed sirloin, 200 or 300 grams with a marble score of 2+. Last, but not least, is the Purebred Darling Down Gold AA Wagyu rump, 300 grams with an amazing marble score of 8/9+.

An expansive open-air Beer Garden is perfect for sunny afternoons and warm evenings. The Alby also has The Basement space, with three 85-inch tvs showcasing sports, Australia’s first Duckpin Bowling, pool tables and pinball machines. The bar menu features snacks, nachos, tacos and burgers.

Check out the ‘What’s On’ section of The Alby’s website for the latest happenings. Gift cards are available.

On Google, Rohan Fuhrman wrote, “Great to see more decent pubs opening in the Woden area and livening the place up. This has a great outdoor seating area for the warmer weather, but also has a cool downstairs sports bar with pool table, modified bowling alley and pinball machines ... has a great friendly vibe. Will definitely be back.”

45 Furzer Street
Phillip ACT 2606
Capitol Bar and Grill

Capitol Bar and Grill

Capitol Bar & Grill is a stylish, Italianesque steakhouse featuring modern cuisine and wood-fired theatrics.

Conceptualised by renowned Australian restaurateur and Creative Food Director of QT Hotel, Robert Marchetti, the restaurant has a reputation for its prime cut steaks. Indeed, Capitol Bar & Grill won the award for Best Steak at the 2022 AHA ACT Hospitality and Tourism Awards.

Capitol Bar & Grill’s dry age cabinet features New York Striploin (bone in), T-bone and Portoro Rib Eye. From the grill is tender, juicy minute steak, short rib, sirloin and rib eye. A range of in-house made sauces ramp matters up. All beef is sourced from quality farms, including in the Riverina, Canowindra, Cornea and Southern NSW, as well as Gippsland, Victoria.

Quality and the finest local produce are hallmarks of Capitol Bar & Grill’s cuisine. Fresh ingredients include those picked straight from the hotel’s rooftop garden.

The exclusive Chef’s Table at Capitol is an amazing feasting experience. Every Friday the Chef de Cuisine puts on a six-course journey of seasonal tastes (matching wines available).

Capitol Bar & Grill’s wine list – carefully curated – blends classical and contemporary Australian wines with those from the Mediterranean and Mainland Europe. Canberra District and Southern New South Wales wines feature.

Capitol Bar & Grill has a sophisticated interior, with comfortable luxe corner booths, table seating and places at the island bar. The colour palette is warm, inviting and Italian accents elevate the look.

On Google, Melissa Ashley wrote, “Fantastic place to have a drink in the cosy bar before dinner in the restaurant. Great cocktails, friendly, happy staff. Our steaks and sides were delicious ... We will definitely be returning.”

1 London Circuit
Canberra ACT 2601
Marble and Grain

Marble and Grain

Sophisticated Marble and Grain offers a paddock-to-plate menu featuring juicy, tender, high-quality steaks and other fare, all cooked to perfection.

Marble and Grain steaks include rib eye bone, beef tenderloin, grain fed grasslands, pasture-fed Riverina, scotch fillet, sirloin and more. The wide range of sauces include roasted bone marrow and classic béarnaise.

Where possible, Marble and Grain sources beef and produce from its own farm. The Butcher’s Board is a carnivore’s delight.

Marble and Grain has won Best Steak Restaurant and other accolades. With a polished marble bar, dark timber paneling, exposed concrete walls and soft leather seating, Marble and Grain is stylish, warm and akin to the best European steakhouses.

Craft beers are on tap and a curated, extensive wine list is available.

On Google, Raymond Robinson wrote, “Easily a top-5 steak place in Canberra. The inside dining area is lush. The entrees are superb. As are the sides, drinks and desserts … But it's the steak that is most supreme.”

25 Mort Street
Canberra ACT 2612

Charcoal Restaurant

Set I the charming 1920’s Melbourne building, Charcoal is a Canberran institution. Since first opening its doors in 1962 Charcoal is known for its steak speciality. Showcasing the best in local produce Charcoal is one of a handful of local establishments to offer an extensive selection of world-class Oakley-Angus reserve, Australia’s leader in premium beef.

The classic menu serves modern cuts with a selection of sides and sauces. This old-style eatery serves up old school charm in spades along with some of the finest beef in town. If you consider yourself a steak aficionado, make sure you pay Charcoal Restaurant a visit.

Ashmita Dhungel shared this review on Google, Best steak restaurant in town. The food, the atmosphere, and the service are absolutely amazing. Highly recommended.”

Kingston Hotel

Affectionately known as ‘The Kingo’ by locals, this iconic pub is a well-known favourite just minutes from the CBD. Full to the brim with rustic charm this casual social spot features a quintessential pub experience, boutique beer on tap, and glorious steaks.

With over ten succulent steaks, fresh frites, and more sauces than you can poke a stick at diners are most certainly spoilt for choice. If you fancy a relaxed vibe that the whole family can enjoy look no further than the Kingston Hotel.

Hal Croxon had this to say about the Kingston Hotel on Google, Great steak. Fillet mignon was superb.”

For more dining options, you might like our articles on the best gastropubs, the best fine dining, the best bistros and the best restaurants in Canberra. Should you fancy a tipple, our guides to the best cocktail bars, the best wine bars, or the best pubs may also be of interest.

Your experience with steakhouses in Canberra

Thanks to our commenters who have provided insightful feedback. If you believe we have got it wrong, please let us know.

Have you had experience with any of the steakhouses listed above? If so, share your feedback in the comments below.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can a steak be cooked to order?

Generally, there are five standard temperatures that chefs offer to diners when ordering steak: rare, medium rare, medium, medium well, and well done. That said, some steakhouses may also offer super rare or blue as an option, which can be regarded as the minimum safe temperature to cook and serve.

What is the best way to order a steak?

Some would suggest any way you like it! Others would suggest that it depends on the cut. As a general rule of thumb, leaner cuts of steak should be cooked rarer, and fattier cuts more thoroughly. If your cut sits in the middle, a good option is medium rare as it allows for external charring and a tender interior.

What is the most tender cut of steak?

Many chefs would agree that the most tender cut of meat is filet mignon. Otherwise known as eye fillet, this cut is extracted from the tip of the tenderloin. As this muscle isn’t worked a great deal, it tends to be the most tender.

What is a steak marble score?

A marble score is a component of the overall beef-grading system in Australia. It assesses the amount of intramuscular fat and scores accordingly. A higher marble score suggests a softer, silkier texture as the marbled fat breaks down and permeates the meat as it is cooked. Scores generally range from 0 (no fat) to 9 (abundant), with Wagyu cattle sitting at a grade of about 4 to 6.

What is dry ageing?

Dry ageing is the process by which large cuts of beef are aged before being trimmed. Dry ageing indicates that the beef has been hung while refrigerated, from anywhere between 30 and 50 days. It is believed that the process improves two major characteristics – taste and tenderness. Dry ageing differs to wet ageing, whereby beef is trimmed and cut, then vacuum sealed.

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I’ll cook my own at home, thanks!

I’ve been to most of what’s listed above but for me there’s no comparison to Maestral restaurant out in Westin.
Go check it out!

batmantrilogy12:39 pm 11 Jan 16

Went to the kingo with the family and loved the steak with a relaxing environment !
+1

The Kingo hands down. If you don’t want to cook your own cow they have a restaurant next foor which my family loves. Here’s the menu: http://kingstonhotel.com.au/pdf/Maddies@kingston-menu.pdf

Page Tavern does the best steak in Canberra for sure. 350g or 700g challenge. Beautifully tender Diamantina beef is to die for.

karmatraveller said :

You’re comparing a steakhouse cooked sirloin, to a self-cooked Angus scotch fillet, under the banner of “best of Canberra taste off.”

Was the sirloin grain or grass fed, how many days if grain? Was the scotch fillet MSA certified, or were they upselling you black angus?

You strike me as someone who learnt to cook off Masterchef..

That’s a bit rough. Any reason for attacking the OP instead of every other person on the planet who writes about food without a detailed history of the produce?

Brianna said :

I had dinner last night at L’Arista in Belconnen.

http://www.nutmegfood.com.au/our-venues/lartista-pizza-pasta-grill.aspx

The steak was exceptional.

They are owned by the same group who run the kiosks at EPIC. It’s good to know they can cook steak because they certainly don’t do pizza well.

I had dinner last night at L’Arista in Belconnen. http://www.nutmegfood.com.au/our-venues/lartista-pizza-pasta-grill.aspx

The steak was exceptional.

I am yet to get a decent steak in Canberra. Charcoal Grill is OK, Kingsleys was very average and I fail to see the sense in cooking your own steak. Is there anywhere on a par with the Norman Hotel or Char Char Char in Brisbane?

The cook your own steaks at the Kingo are good – always have been. There is an industrial size hot English mustard squeeze bottle to boot also.
What lets the meal down is the absence of chips – all they have is a boring salad. I would happily pay an extra $5 for a bowl of crisp steak fries.

karmatraveller8:47 pm 07 Aug 14

You’re comparing a steakhouse cooked sirloin, to a self-cooked Angus scotch fillet, under the banner of “best of Canberra taste off.”

Was the sirloin grain or grass fed, how many days if grain? Was the scotch fillet MSA certified, or were they upselling you black angus?

You strike me as someone who learnt to cook off Masterchef..

XO_VSOP said :

Genie said :

You can’t compare who has the best steak when you’re cooking one of them yourself.

I think you can, a 16 year old could be cooking your steak at ohhh lala courgette, its not rocket science . Its all in the steak’s taste, it’s origin, its cut, grain-fed grass-fed.

Which reminded me of this!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THNPmhBl-8I&feature=share

Genie said :

You can’t compare who has the best steak when you’re cooking one of them yourself.

I think you can, a 16 year old could be cooking your steak at ohhh lala courgette, its not rocket science . Its all in the steak’s taste, it’s origin, its cut, grain-fed grass-fed.

You can’t compare who has the best steak when you’re cooking one of them yourself.

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