Opened: May 2022
With a name like “J.T. Prime,” the owners of this year-old Old Town hideaway tip their hand a bit where the menu is concerned. Surprise, it’s a steakhouse. Still, don’t be deceived by the prosaic branding – the food is anything but. Beef carpaccio ($22), dressed with truffle oil, Parmigiano-Reggiano and tiny, desiccated capers, is the first surprise of the evening. I’ve always thought of it as a throwaway dish, but this one is a symphony of salt and umami, with a grace note of citrus that follows every bite. Totally delicious. Same for the market oysters ($24) served with a playful side of serrano ponzu; and a shamelessly rich Caesar salad ($12/$20) embellished with sun-dried tomatoes and deployments of arugula to tame the creamy, salty fishiness. The ribeye – you guessed it, prime – is about what you’d expect from a $65 steak in today’s dining battleground. Which is to say, perfectly fine, though slightly less dreamy than a plump, pan-seared lobe of Chilean sea bass ($55) dolled up with a red pepper vinaigrette over a puddle of citrus cream, paired with a dry French rosé. The final surprise of the night: the reveleation this dark, moody little gem originated in Yuma, of all places. I can assure you, it will be your favorite Yuma-based restaurant ever. And then some.
Wild Card: They also have a pair of Wagyu cuts ($200) – maybe a “J.T. Wagyu” rebrand is in the offing?
4216 N. Brown Ave., 480-597-5864, jtprimekitchen.com