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Ruth’s Chris

Exterior Ruth's Chris Steak House

Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse (pc-ivacationonline.com)

If you don’t know the story of the Ruth behind Ruth’s Chris, you’re simply in for a treat. Ruth Fertel, born in Happy Jack Lousiana, was an amazing woman of strong will and some good fortune that included both a hurricane and a fire. After going through a divorce in the early 60’s, Ruth felt her chemistry degree from LSU wouldn’t pay the bills and provide the life she wanted for her two sons so she, of course, mortgaged her home and bought a steakhouse with no experience. Can you imagine what her family and friends must have felt about this decision?? Her bet paid off and combined with her willingness to learn to cut and seer steaks, she not only prepared the food but waitressed and did the accounting. After Hurricane Betsy hit New Orleans a few months later (can you just imagine?), she used the steaks in her freezer to feed the homeless and relief workers which turned into good fortune after the decision of the local Bishop. Success came but so did a lawsuit by the former owner. That is indeed a lot to overcome, but a fire destroyed her restaurant in 1975 as well. Not to worry there was a local construction gentleman that assured her he could rebuild her restaurant within a week. Not only did he keep his promise, but provided her an additional 100 seats to help with the long lines she had daily. Too many details for an opening summary so just keep reading.

General Restaurant Information

Food Type: Steakhouse

Restaurant Type: Fine Dining

U.S. Locations: 128

States: 37 states, Ruth’s Chris Locations

Company Slogan: This is how it’s done & The steak dinner, done right

 

Contact Information

Website: ruthschris.com

Questions: Contact Information

Phone number: 407-333-7440

Email: Contact Form Only

Blog: Ruth’s Chris Blog

FAQ Page: Frequently Asked Questions

 

Ownership

Who Owns Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse? Ruth’s Hospitality Group

Headquartered: Winter Park, FL

Contact Information: 

Website: rhgi.com 

Email/contact pageRHGI Contact Page

Phone: 504-949-3999

Address:1030 W Canton Ave Ste 100, Winter Park, Florida, 32789 

Do They Franchise? Franchise Information

 

What Is It Like To Work At Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse?

4.5/5 or 90%; 2 Reviews (indeed.com)

3.6/5, or 72%; 348 Reviews (glassdoor.com)

What to expect when working at Ruth’s Chris (job-applications.com)

 

The first Ruth's Chris Steak House

The original Ruth’s Chris steakhouse (pc-ruthschris.com)

The History of Ruth’s Chris

Original Location: 1100 North Broad Street, New Orleans, LA

Founded: May 24, 1965

Founded By: Chris Matulich (1927), Ruth Fertel (1965)

Ruth Fertel, founder of Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse (mentalfloss.com)

Ruth Fertel: The Story Of The Empress Of Steaks (today-magazine.com)

Ruth Fertel (wikipedia.com)

Founder Obituary:

Ruth Fertel, 75; Founder of Worldwide Steakhouse Chain (latimes.com)

Ruth Fertel of Steakhouse Fame Is Dead at 75 (nytimes.com)

Name Origin:

Ruth Fertel purchased the restaurant in 1965 which was then called Chris steakhouse which was named after the previous owner, Chris Matulich. She was so successful at the location; she opened a second four blocks away keeping the name Chris steakhouse. Matulich sued her though stopping her from using the name. Her solution, just put her name in front of his creating the somewhat confusing name, Ruth’s Chris.

History Page: Company History Page

Current View of Original Location: 1100 North Broad Street as it is today (link may not work on mobile devices without Google Maps)

Historical Articles: 

The Empire of Sizzzzzzzle: Mom Buys a Steakhouse (myneworleans.com)

Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse (referenceforbusiness.com)

 

Social Awareness

Charity Focus: Children in need, Foodbank, Education, Education and more

Green | Eco-Friendly: Ruth’s Chris Uniforms Go Eco-Friendly

Animal Cruelty: No resources found

 

Discounts At Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse

Rewards Program: Ruth’s Chris Reward Program

Do Kids Eat Free at Ruth’s Chris?

Summary: They do not offer a kids eat free discount or promotion

Does Ruth’s Chris Offer Military Discounts?

Summary: They will occasionally offer a special promotion at select restaurants but nothing standing or consistent.

What About My Birthday at Ruth’s Chris?

Summary: They offer a free dessert on your birthday (ruthschris.com)

Does Ruth’s Chris Offer First Responder Discounts?

Summary: They do not offer a first responder discount

Does Ruth’s Chris Offer Senior Citizen | AARP Discounts?

Summary: They do not offer a senior citizen discount

Are There Any Other Discounts or Benefits at Ruth’s Chris?

Summary: No additional benefits could be found

 

The food at Ruth's Chris Steak House

Ruth’s Chris steakhouse (pc- groupon.com)

Amenities

Order Online: No

WiFi Available: Yes

Use Apple Pay: Yes  

Reservations: Reservations at Ruth’s Chris

Catering: Catering Menu

Drive-Thru: No

Open 24 Hours: No  

 

Customer Reviews of Ruth’s Chris Seakhouse

Yelp: 3.9/5 or 78%, 3,607 reviews sampled

Tripadvisor: 4.4/5 or 88%, 2,992 reviews sampled

Overall (weighted) Average: 4.14/5 or 83%, 6,559 reviews sampled

 

Ruth's Chris & Related Items on Amazon

Weber Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill
Weber Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill
18-1/2 in. Classic Pit Barrel Cooker Package
18-1/2 in. Classic Pit Barrel Cooker Package
Arteflame One Series 30″ Grill
Arteflame One Series 30″ Grill
Arteflame Grill Classic 40″
Arteflame Grill Classic 40″
Bellemain Premium Steak Knife Set of 4 Stainless Steel
Bellemain Premium Steak Knife Set of 4 Stainless Steel
Cook’s Illustrated Meat Book
Cook’s Illustrated Meat Book
Weber Genesis II E-410 Liquid Propane Grill
Weber Genesis II E-410 Liquid Propane Grill
George Foreman 15-Serving Indoor/Outdoor Electric Grill
George Foreman 15-Serving Indoor/Outdoor Electric Grill
Coleman Road Trip Propane Portable Grill
Coleman Road Trip Propane Portable Grill
Weber Spirit II E-310 Gas Grill LP Outdoor
Weber Spirit II E-310 Gas Grill LP Outdoor
Blackstone 28 inch Outdoor Flat Top Gas Grill
Blackstone 28 inch Outdoor Flat Top Gas Grill
Kamado Joe Classic II, Charcoal Grill
Kamado Joe Classic II, Charcoal Grill
Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Charcoal Smoker
Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Charcoal Smoker
Chicago Cutlery Fusion 18pc Block Set
Chicago Cutlery Fusion 18pc Block Set
Cangshan Series German Steel Forged 8-Piece Steak Knife Set
Cangshan Series German Steel Forged 8-Piece Steak Knife Set

Food & Nutrition

Menu: Ruth’s Chris Menu

Kids Menu: Ruth’s Chris Kids Menu

Secret Menu: No

Most Popular Menu Item: Steak

Coke or Pepsi Products: Coke

Serve Alcohol: Yes

Nutritional Information: They do not offer a nutritional menu

Vegetarian | Vegan Options: Vegetarian Options at Ruth’s Chris (ruthschris.net)

Farm to Table | Organic Options | Clean | Non-GMO: Their site states they use “the finest custom-aged, corn-fed Midwestern beef”. No other resources could be found.

Miscellaneous Nutrition Resources: 

According to Encylopedia.com

Ruth’s Chris beef is dry-aged in Chicago and then shipped twice weekly in large cuts to the restaurants. The steaks are cut into smaller portions at each restaurant, and cooked by a special process using a broiler heated to about 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit. This cooking method is consistent throughout the chain.

Sizzling Steak 101: A Master Class In Steak Cuts (ruthschris.net)

Discover Ruth’s Chris Difference (ruthschris.net)

Ruth’s Chris Nutritional Information (myfitnesspal.com)

Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse Nutrition Information (livestrong.com)

Nutritional Information Ruth’s Chris (restaurant-menu-nutrition.com)

Allergy Information

Allergen Information: They do not offer a nutritional menu

Gluten Free Options: 

Ruth’s Chris steakhouse Gluten Free Menu (urbantastebud.com)

Gluten Free Options Ruth’s Chris steakhouse (gluttenfreefollowme.com)

Gluten Free Options at Ruth’s Chris (ruthschris.net)

Dairy Free Options:

Dairy Free Options Ruth’s Chris (dairyfreetraveler.com)

Restaurant Guide For Dairy-Free Dining (godairyfree.org)

Peanut Free Options: 

Peanut Allergy Ruth’s Chris steakhouse (allergyeats.com)

Food Allergy Guides For Many Chain Restaurants (verywellhealth.com)

Ways to Eliminate Risks of Peanut Allergy When Dining Out (healthguidance.org)

 

 

Interior of Ruth's Chris Steak House

Ruth’s Chris Dining (pc- parkwayconstruction.com)

Does Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse Have Any Secret Recipes?

Secret Recipes:  

Barbecued Shrimp (topsecretrecipes.com)

Petite Filet (topsecretrecipes.com)

Creamed Spinach (topsecretrecipes.com)

Potatoes Au Gratin (topsecretrecipes.com)

Barbecue Shrimp Orleans (copykat.com)

Bread Pudding (ruthschris.net)

Barbecued Shrimp (ruthschris.net)

Crab Cakes (ruthschris.net)

Sweet Potato Casserole (ruthschris.net)

“Can I get a copy of a Ruth’s Chris recipe?” (ruthschris.com)

 

Did You Know?

Fun Facts: 

They are the largest chain of upscale steakhouse restaurants in the United States by number of stores (source)

Right before passing away in 2002; Ruth sold the company after 37 years of ownership

Ruth Fertel was born in 1927 and raised in Happy Jack, Lousiana. She graduated from LSU with a degree in chemistry at the young age of 19 (source)

After a divorce in the early 60’s, Fertel was left to raise her teenage sons. She didn’t feel that she could do so successfully on her income as a lab technician so she began looking for a different line of work. She saw an ad for a steakhouse and although she had no experience at all in the food industry, she mortgaged her home, borrowing $22,000 and purchased Chris steakhouse. (source)

Chris Matulich had owned Chris steakhouse for 35 years prior the acquisition to Ruth. (source)

When Fertel purchased the restaurant in a lower class area of New Orleans, the building seated 60 people and had no parking lot. (source)

A few months after opening, Hurricane Betsy devastated the gulf coast. Ruth turned the disaster into an opportunity and began cooking steaks for the homeless and relief workers. The local Bishop suspended meatless Fridays because of the loss of the local fisheries in the area allowing Ruth to remain open on Fridays and soon built a strong following especially with the male population which brought in more than 90% of her business. (source)

Her ability to create great steaks (she hand cut all of them herself as well as waited tables and kept the books) allowed her to open a second location four blocks away. Chris Matulich sued her though for using the name Chris steakhouse. I’m sure it didn’t make him very happy when she simply placed her name in front of his calling it, of course, Ruth’s Chris. (source)

Sadly, the original restaurant burned down in 1975 but a man in the construction business promised Fertel that he could build her a new one…in a week. Keeping his promise, she opened the new building that seated 160 people giving her 100 additional seats which were a blessing for those waiting in line down the sidewalk each day. (source)

 

Interesting Articles:

Secrets of the great steakhouses (foxnews.com)

Ruth’s Chris steakhouse (encyclopedia.com)

Ruth’s Chris steakhouses replacing longtime CEO (orlandosentinel.com)

 

 

Social Media

Followers (as of June 2018) – 

Facebook: 110,041

Twitter: 4,986

Instagram: 4,337

Mobile Apps

No mobile apps available

Alternatives

Better Options: Coming Soon

Similar Restaurants:

Fleming’s 

Texas Roadhouse

 

In Summary

It’s almost worth a visit to pay tribute to what Ruth Fertel overcame to build this thriving business. A story worthy of Hollywood for sure. If you happen to have a location close to you and no budget to worry about or celebrating a special occasion, Ruth’s Chris is undoubtedly worth a visit unless your date is a vegetarian which then there may be some better choices. Steak is on the menu here, and the reputation Ruth created in 1965 continues today. There may be several steakhouses in the area, but you will have a hard time finding a better one that Ruth’s Chris and I guarantee you won’t find one with a better story.  

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