With over 100 company-owned and franchised restaurants throughout the Eastern and Midwestern United States, RARE Hospitality International Inc. has a fast-growing presence in the steakhouse segment of the dining industry. This relative newcomer to the market--at scarcely 15 years in business, compared to such 1960s-era chains as Ponderosa and Bonanza--RARE's irreverent style of "cowboy cuisine" shook up the segment. By 1996, the company's core chain of LongHorn Steakhouses numbered 81 units. Following its initial public offering in 1992, the company acquired the Bugaboo Creek Steak House chain and its smaller The Capital Grille group of pricey eateries. Founder George W. McKerrow, Jr. continued to serve the company as chairman through the mid-1990s.

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Mountain Top Cheesecake


New York style cheesecake with strawberries and whipped cream.

MOUNTAIN TOP CHEESECAKE
LongHorn Steakhouse Copycat Recipe

Makes 1  9 inch Cheesecake


16 graham crackers, crushed fine
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 lbs cream cheese (four 8-ounce packages)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup whole milk
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tsp freshly grated lemon zest
1/4 cup all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl combine the graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Press firmly into the bottom of a greased 9-inch round springform pan.

In a large mixing bowl, mix the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Mix in the milk, and then the eggs one at a time, mixing just enough to combine. Mix in the sour cream, vanilla, lemon zest, and flour until the mixture is smooth. Pour the filling into pan.

Bake for 1 hour, turn the oven off and let cake cool with the door closed for 4 hours to prevent cracking. Chill completely in refrigerator before serving. Serve plain, or topped with berry sauce.


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