It all started with some cotton candy. That’s probably not usually the reason people go to a steakhouse, but it was the reason Hyde & Vyne caught my eye. I started seeing these photos of big martini glasses filled with cotton candy on Instagram, and I am a sucker for a unique dessert, so I started doing some “research.”
Not the Typical Steakhouse
Calling Hyde & Vyne a steakhouse is a bit of a misnomer. I made the assumption because their menu initially seemed similar to Ruth’s Chris or Flemings: Sides and proteins have to be ordered separately instead of in a complete meal, and they feature some serious steaks and chops. But it’s really like a cooler, less expensive, more innovative version of one of those places – and one that transforms into a nightclub, no less.
First tip? Make a reservation, available online or on Yelp, well ahead of time. On my first attempt, I tried six days ahead to schedule a Sunday dinner, and Hyde & Vyne was completely booked! A Wednesday night a few weeks later proved more successful. I went to the restaurant — located at Champlain & Perrin in Fresno near Sequoia Brewery — with a couple of friends, and we tried things from basically every section of the menu.
We started with Happy Hour before dinner. On Wednesdays, Happy Hour lasts all day at Hyde & Vyne, with half off everything behind the bar and a great selection of appetizers. Otherwise, it’s Tuesday through Friday from 5 to 7 p.m.
We had the Oven-Braised Lamb Meatballs and the Ahi Poke Stack, both of which were very delicious. I have to admit the only thing we didn’t try were the cocktails, which looked amazing, but Garden Cocktails happened to be doing a pop-up at Hyde & Vyne’s Syde Bar that night, and I couldn’t resist that!
Our dinner was where I was most pleasantly surprised. I was prepared to spend quite a bit of money to try everything I wanted; after all, I knew I had to order my main dish and sides separately. I was getting a little bit intimidated because the steaks looked huge, and I’m not a big red meat eater. But our very nice waiter informed us that most of the dishes at Hyde & Vyne are meant for sharing, steaks included. THAT was why they’re so big!
So we had another appetizer, because I had never had Steakhouse Tartare before, and I wanted to check that off my food bucket list. It was way better than I ever expected a dish of raw meat to be, and something I would definitely order again. Then we experienced something else completely new: The waiter made us a Table-Side Caesar Salad. That was both fun AND delicious!
For our main course, we decided to choose the 16-oz Grilled Ribeye. It comes pre-sliced and is perfect for sharing. It was tender and juicy and all-around tasty. But for me, the real stars were the side dishes we ordered: the Oven-Roasted Brussel Sprouts and, in particular, the Wild Mushroom Risotto. You guys, I would be more than happy to return to Hyde & Vyne just to eat the risotto alone. YUM!
Finally, it was time for the much-anticipated Cotton Candy Martini. It is not, in fact, an alcoholic drink but an actual dessert of cotton candy, as I explained in my opening. It comes in different flavors, but the blueberry was being served when we were there.
When it arrived, I’m pretty sure my eyes bugged out, because it was even larger in person than I imagined. I LOVED IT. It was so good that we ate all the way to the bottom, and I ended up getting blue syrup all over my jeans. #WorthIt
All in all, pretty much 5 stars for everything we ate at Hyde & Vyne (which was a lot)! Get yourself there as soon as you can. When all was said and done and we split the bill, everything I described ended up costing us each $45, which I was more than willing to pay for the quality and amount of food we had.
Hyde & Vyne Nightlyfe
And if you’re wondering about that nightclub thing I mentioned, well, I’m an old woman at heart now and haven’t checked it out. But the “vybe” at Hyde & Vyne is just as cool as many clubs in Vegas, and they’ve got the perfect opportunity coming up for you to see for yourself. Brody Jenner of reality TV fame will be the featured DJ at Hyde & Vyne on May 25 at 9 p.m. Tickets range from $20 for entry to $600 for a table and bottle service.