For some people there is nothing better than a thick cut of premium beef grilled to perfection and served up with a wedge salad, a loaded baked potato, and steamed asparagus. Steakhouses are great places mark all the celebrations of life, and here are some of the best steakhouses in St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and the rest of Pinellas County. Read on and find where a carnivores dreams can come true!

Rococo Steak in St. Petersburg is a classic upscale steakhouse in the downtown area, and features an a la carte menu. When you are in the mood for serious steak, try the 40oz dry aged porterhouse and enhance it with truffle butter, and add the creamless corn mash. This combination of flavors and textures is perfection on a plate and a palate! I’m always looking for new and unique menu items and this hits the spot.

The menu includes seafood, lamb and pork entrees as well as all the traditional steakhouse salads, sides and desserts. One after dinner option that stands out is the 100 Years of Port. This is four different port wine samples, one each that is 10, 20, 30 and 40 years old, combining for 100 years. Put all this together and it's possible you'll remember this dinner for 100 years!

Bascom's Chop House in the Gateway area just East of Pinellas Park has an upscale dining room with private dining options for small parties. A unique appetizer is the buffalo cauliflower, which is flash-fried and tossed in a buffalo sauce, and served with blue cheese and ranch dressing. It’s hearty with great spice, all cooled down via the ranch dressing. They have a full menu of Angus beef, lamb, pork and veal as well as seafood entrees. You'll find all the traditional sides as well but for something different, go with the spinach gorgonzola gratin. I’m always looking for unique menu items, and this one hits the spot taking classic creamed spinach to a whole new level.

If you’re on the beach there's a trio of great chop shops to try. One of the best steakhouses on St. Pete Beach is 1200 Chophouse. The place got its name from the 1200 degree broiler used to cook the steaks, and it creates a charred crust on the meat while sealing in all the juices. And if you're hungry, be sure to try three-pound tomahawk ribeye. That’s right, 3lbs of Ribeye on the bone! It’s already one of the most delicious cuts of beef, and the bone amps up the flavor even more. Everything you expect from a steakhouse is on the menu, but one surprise is that 1200 Chophouse serves a complete meal for the price of the steak. A salad, rolls and mashed potato comes with all the entrees making this a great value for the money.

On Gulf Boulevard is Aqua Prime in Indian Rocks Beach. They locally source all their ingredients, and offer an extensive menu of steaks, chops, and seafood, often very different than what you’ll find at a typical steakhouse. Start with the brisket flatbread, and move on to the smoked prime rib, which has a crust along the fat cap with a little crunch, and when it’s sliced across you see a delicious pink finish running from edge to edge. If you’re looking for beef heaven on earth, this might be the place you’ll find it.

"Whether you're talking about our certified Black Angus beef or coastal American cuisine, our mission to provide the freshest quality ingredients and unique menu items.  And of course our goal is to provide superior service in a polished, casual atmosphere."  Johnny Morales, General Manager of Aqua Prime

Just across the Sand Key Bridge on Clearwater Beach is Blinkers Beachside, Steakhouse & Lounge, the waterside outpost of the award-winning Kentucky Steakhouse brand in the bluegrass state. While they’ve brought an extensive bourbon collection for the bar, Blinker’s focuses on steak perfection and makes the magic happen with a broiler searing their steaks at 1700 degrees. Pair any of their cuts with a cold water lobster tail and you’ve got surf and turf of your dreams. Interesting side dishes here include the honey-thyme glazed carrots. 

A family-friendly casual steak place is Sioux City in New Port Richey, who grills all of their steaks, chops, and ribs over an oak wood fire grill. This infuses the meat with a subtle oakwood smoke flavor that you won't find in any other steakhouse in Pinellas County. They have an extensive menu including all the steaks, chops, ribs entrée salads, burgers, and French dip sandwiches. Sioux City offers something for everyone, and if you are within the scent of the smoke now is the right time to try it!

There are thousands of dining options in Pinellas County, but the best steakhouses in St. Petersburg, Clearwater, or St. Pete Beach can compete with the best high-end dining establishments anywhere. When your craving that perfect cut grilled to perfection head to any of these places for a soul-satisfying experience and a meal to remember! For more great places to eat, drink and the best events coming to Pinellas County go to 727area. You can also register for updates sent directly to your phone. It’s free!

Photo from Jez Timms on Unsplash.