Meaters – Brace Bar, a high quality steakhouse in Rome, has recently opened in the Ponte Milvio area to delight customers with some of the best steaks in Rome.
High quality dry-aged steaks and other cuts of prime meat are served alongside unique dishes and sides, making this an outstanding option if you’re looking for one of the best steakhouses Rome has to offer. Polish, Finnish, German, Argentine and Italian grass-fed beef are offered on a changing menu, sourced from some of the finest cattle farms in the world.
Meaters – Brace Bar is linked to two other restaurants via an opened-ended, lively bar area. The trio of eateries – which also includes Mahalo – South Pacific Fine Food and Malandros – Bodega de Tapas is owned by Roman restaurant dynasty the Martella family. Together, they represent an internationally inspired project, offering diners the opportunity to explore different world cuisines (probably on different nights!).
Italy has a strong pedigree in cattle farming, and you may indeed come to Meaters for an all-Italian steak experience. However, the beauty of Meaters – Brace Bar is its sourcing of some of the best cuts of meat from around the world, making this truly a connoisseur’s paradise for steak, right in Rome.
For each breed present on the menu, you can choose between cuts on the bone (T-bone or ribs) or boneless steaks from rib-eye to fillet.
Italian specialities include the Nazionale Extra-Marezzato (extra marbled) beef from the Pezzata Rossa strain of cattle, hailing originally from Northern Italy’s Friuli region, and related to the Swiss Simmental breed of the same name.
Look out too for “Sashi” Finnish beef, which is often nicknamed the European Wagyu for its exceptional marbling, which influences how quickly the fat melts on the grill. Finland’s John Sashi-Nielsen, the founder and owner of JN Meat International, won the World’s Best Steak last year in London for this cut – making it a must-try. The Polish Red Friesian on the menu is rich in fat with an intense, but never aggressive taste.
Basque country Vaca Vieja hails from the Galicia region. Its minimum 40-days of dry-aging makes this one of the most coveted steaks in the world.
My dinner at Meaters – Brace Bar commenced with a tris of beef antipasti, illustrating the range and quality of the raw meat served here. From left, beef tartare minced by knife, egg yolk, mustard, chive, capers and gherkins, dressed with oil, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce.
In the middle, beef carpaccio, marinated in red wine and fine herbs, with crisp salad, and right, seared Tuscan beef, Colonnata lard, fried potatoes and seasonal mushrooms. As a dedicated carnivore I must say that I loved this selection. The meat was incredibly fresh and well dressed, displaying the versatility of the ingredients.
We moved onto a selection of Meaters’ finest steaks. These including Italian Pezzata Rossa rib-eye, Polish Fresian rib-eye, and a wonderful Finnish Sashi rib-eye.
These were accompanied with a selection of sides, including well-prepared spicy and bitter chicory greens, plus this incredible fried onion which deserves an entry of its own. The owners of Meaters explained how they imported a special onion-slicing machine from Canada to produce this wonderful form, which, when fried and doused in cheese, becomes a thing of sweet and crispy beauty. Honestly, I would go back to Meaters – Brace Bar just to have this side dish again!
A word about the wines – the Martella family also have a countryside winery and we tried a couple of excellent labels – Frangente 2017 Cesanese and Refolo 2018 Chardonnay, both from La Giannettola, Azienda Agricola Martella. These make for sensational and above-the-ordinary house wines.
We finished up with a selection of desserts – this orange-infused baked cheesecake and filled doughnuts, both succulent and balanced in flavour.
I really enjoyed my dinner at Meaters – Brace Bar and have to admit that it far exceeded my expectations. The food snob in me expected less from a tris of connected restaurants, but don’t be fooled by the formula – this is probably the best steakhouse in Rome at the moment.
The quality and provenance of the meat is absolutely jaw-dropping and they have the competence to cook it to perfection. A glass-walled kitchen where the chef, part-butcher and grill-master, works while you dine adds a transparent and fascinating touch to the experience. If like me you enjoy your steak on the rare side this is a great opportunity to have your desires realised and is an extraordinary chance to taste the kinds of meats you would normally have to travel some distance for.
Meaters – Brace Bar | Via Riano, 2 | Rome | Tel +39 06 5272 1326