Welcome to The Gatekeepers, a monthly feature in which Eater roams the city meeting the fine ladies and gentlemen that stand between you and some of your favorite tough-to-get tables.
Elizabeth Daniels 4/12
Mastro's of Beverly Hills is where you go to see and be seen. Part of the Mastro's chain of steak and seafood houses with locations in Arizona, Vegas, Chicago, and four restaurant in Southern California, the Canon Drive branch packs in stars, industry types, political honchos, pretty much anyone and everyone with a name has passed through Mastro's at least once. Drive by the restaurant during the early evening on any given night and one will note expensive cars out front and a cluster of diners en route to dinner. Were you looking to transform the second floor into an Amazon Rain Forest? Need a mini Lady Gaga impersonator? No problem. At Mastro's the answer is always yes, the customer is always right, and GM Franco Checchini will ensure you're well taken care of. Below, Checchini on tables, top dishes, and the forthcoming Mastro's Penthouse bar.
It's 8PM on a Saturday night. What's the wait for two? Without a reservation at 8PM on Saturday night and after honoring reservations first, the next available seating could be closer to 9PM, maybe sooner.
Any way to make my wait shorter? Arrive on time and with complete party.
What's the longest wait you've ever seen here? We have had waits of up to one hour. There are times when it is just inevitable.
Tell us about your favorite customers. Of course the ones that frequent our establishment the most and are kind and generous to our staff.
How would you describe your clientele? Sophisticated, successful and eclectic.
Is there a dress code? Business casual. No shorts, baseball caps or sandals, Please!
Who are your VIPs? Our VIP catalogue consists of many diverse clienteles. Everyone from Elite Hollywood, Royalty to International Power Players, but most importantly, our regulars.
What's the strangest request that you've accommodated? I wouldn’t say strange but fun. We had a guest celebrating her birthday and she requested that the 2nd floor be turned into an Amazon Rain Forest. That was fun. No request is too strange here in Beverly Hills.
Has there been any request that you couldn't accommodate? I don’t recall saying no to a request that we could not accommodate. No matter how strange, extravagant or ridiculous, we have always found a way to get it done, so far. Now that we are in the subject of requests, once we were asked by a guest to provide a mini Lady Gaga celebrity impersonator. OMG, that was hilarious.
Is the customer always right? Well, the answer is very simple, YES.
What's the most popular table? By far the cocktail tables on the 2nd floor near the live entertainment.
What's your most important tool for working in this space? The strength of my management team and the passion the staff carries with them every day. Oh, let’s not forget patience, lots of patience.
What's the best item on the menu here? Our Signature Bone-In Prime Steaks and our Lobster Mashed Potatoes. Time after time our guests rave about these items. I would be amiss if I didn’t mention our Signature Seafood Towers. They are a huge hit. Let’s not forget the Warm Butter Cake, sinful!
Tell us about the new upstairs bar. Mastro’s Penthouse is going to be a cosmopolitan oasis with a stunning bar featuring mixologists, sushi, and deck lounge dining. The new space will have large windows that open up to give an open air and lively fresco affect. There will also be a private dining room with its own private balcony. Opening at the end of July- Mastro’s Penthouse will be available for a la carte dining and private events (up to 150 guests).
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