This Kensington Club Steak Marinade Recipe Will Bring You Back to Memory Lane

This Kensington Club Steak Marinade is a copycat recipe for those who loved the signature entree served at now-closed Steak and Ale Restaurants.

kensington club steak marinade

When Zane and I were still in the early stage of our marriage, our favorite date night was dinner at the wonderful steakhouse Steak and Ale.  We always ordered their signature steak, the Kensington Club, which was marinated for three days in oak barrels. When Steak and Ale restaurants closed, we were not only disappointed but also determined to find a way to duplicate the Kensignton Club at home.

How to Make Kensington Club Steak Marinade

Is it similar to the original Kensington Club Steak Marinade?

After tweaking myriad recipes and taste testing many steaks, we decided that this marinade yields the closest copycat of the Kensington Club. This marinade is a slightly sweet, salty & tangy blend of pineapple juice, wine, soy, and other seasonings. It is not only great on beef but also on chicken and pork.

Cook’s Note: Be sure to marinate steaks for at least 24 hours. If you buy and freeze steaks, you can freeze them in the marinade. Once thawed, the steaks will be ready to throw on the grill.

For a celebration or special occasion, I serve these fried appetizer crab claws before the main course. Our favorite sides for the steaks are gourmet Gruyere cheese grits and Ruth’s Chris steakhouse chopped salad. If going all out, we round out the meal with the gluten-free but decadent fallen chocolate souffle cake. This is truly a meal that is as good as any you’d get at the finest steakhouse!

Does marinade make steak tender?

Absolutely! Marinades, when used wisely, can tenderize meat, increase moisture, and enhance flavor, making tough portions of meat much more appetizing.

If you try the steaks I’d love to hear what you think! I predict they’ll become a fave at your house too:-) As always, thanks so much for stopping by. Be blessed, and stay savvy!!!

Kensington Club Steak Marinade

Kensington Club Steak Marinade

Yield: 6-8
Prep Time: 1 day
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 day 10 minutes

A Polynesian marinade flavored with pineapple, soy, wine & special seasonings that is great on beef, chicken and pork.


  • 4-5 steaks (we love filet mignon)
  • 1 3/4 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup + 2 TB sugar
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder


  1. Combine all marinade ingredients.
  2. Mix until well combined and seasonings dissolved into the liquid.
  3. Place meat in Ziploc bag; pour marinade over.
  4. Marinade all day or overnight, turning occasionally.
  5. Grill meat according to the desired doneness.

Nutrition Information
Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 660Total Fat 4gSaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 60mgSodium 9356mgCarbohydrates 104gSugar 99gProtein 30g

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  1. Nancy, thank you SO much for sharing this!!! I hope you’ll let me know what you think after your try this version! Agree~never see Burgundy wine anywhere!!

  2. Hi! I worked as a prep cook in the kitchen & as a Waiter at a Steak n Ale in Pittsburgh in the mid-1970’s and there were no oak barrels, just large plastic tubs in the walk-in. I made the marinade and it was made with Burgundy wine, sugar, soy sauce, pineapple juice and ugh.. MSG! The Hawaiian Chicken was called Poachers Pleasure. (Maybe they changed the name later?) Thanks for posting this recipe – apparently Burgundy wine isn’t a thing anymore and I’ve been trying to replicate the recipe for years with limited success. I look forward to trying yours!

  3. If you think it tastes good on steak, you should try it on chicken breast. Hawaiian chicken is what they called it when I worked at steak n ale. It was served over rice pilaf and I couldn’t count the number of times I ate it before my shift.

    Oh and if you really want it to taste the way it did at the restaurant then you need to marinate it for days. I usually do it at least 5 days in the fridge. Don’t worry, the pineapple juice basically cooks the meat keeping it from spoiling.

  4. Thank you for sharing this, Mike. I loved the pineapple chicken, too. Glad to know that about the wine. I assume white or red would work. Either way, these were the best steaks ever!!!

  5. I can’t speak to all Steak and Ales. I worked at the one on hwy 290 in Houston in the mid 70’s for a couple of years. There were No oak barrels used for marinating steaks. In the walk in cooler, the Kensington clubs were marinated in plastic tubs as was the pineapple chicken ( I don’t remember what it was called ). I don’t remember all the marinade ingredients, but Jug Red, not White, Wine was one of them.

  6. Hi Kathy! Any white wine will work….just grab somethng at the grocery. Since it is marinade, it doesn’t have to be expensive. The marinadee is ss delicious. Hope you enjoy!!

  7. We loved Steak and Ale too, when we were in school in Baton Rouge. What brand of white wine would I purchase for this? I haven’t a clue.

  8. Hi Terri! Thank you so much for sharing this!!! I am glad to know that sherry was used~I’ll edit the recipe accordingly but offer white wine as an option. I miss Steak and Ale……they were literally one of a kind!!!!

  9. Hi! My family went to Steak and Ale all the time when I was little. I still make it all the time. The chef gave my Dad the recipe years ago. No papaya juice. Your Recipe is spot on except they used Sherry instead of white wine :-). They also used MSG but I never use that!

  10. Hi Christine! That is interesting! I’ve never heard this. I don’t even know where to get papaya juice lol! Thanks for sharing this tidbit!!

  11. Hello Jamie, I happened upon this site looking for some old S & A recipies. I worked there for 3 years back in 1984 – 87. I did everything back of the house dishwasher, prep and line cook. It was a great place to eat and had a solid reputation in our town. It was also a good place to work as far the industry. The company was owned by Pillsburry at the time and pay was above average and had good health insurance . I have a few other interesting things to tell and I have something I believe you would love to see ( remove all doubt about marinade ). I’m not sure if this is still an active post, if it is, I’d love to share this info with you.

  12. Hi Sam, I am SO glad to hear that there is a still functioning Steak and Ale! I only wish it were closer to me haha. If I ever make my way to Springfield, that will be on my must-visit list. Thanks so much for taking time to share!!!

  13. Hi Jamie,

    There is a restaurant in Springfield, Missouri called Jimm’s (with two m’s) that’s. An old Steak and Ale location that still functions as a Steak and Ale. I waited tables at S&A during law school, many years ago. All of my fun memories came flooding back when we walked in the place.

    My college-aged son was looking for a marinade and I introduced him to the K Club. Loved it. Thanks for posting and thanks to the changes suggested by the cook.

  14. I share your fond memories of the Kensington Club steak. My favorite too. I will try your version and thank you!!

  15. Wow, this information is absolutely priceless! You are the true expert on what S & A really did, so thank you SO much for sharing all your insider info with us!!!!

    Can’t believe the butter didn’t have honey; it tasted like it did (and many rumors said that it did). Good to know!

    Cooking sherry is actually a less expensive option, so I’ll be using that from now on!

    The Burgundy mushrooms were to die for. If you ever come across a recipe that comes close, I would so love to have it.

    I miss Steak & Ale. It was one of a kind. Thank you for sharing all of this!!!!

  16. I was cook at S&A 40 years ago . My memory is not perfect but let me correct few things posted here.

    First, the recipe posted is very close to the recipe we used. Instead of white wine we used cooking sherry wine but you get the same result. Second we used brown sugar but the difference is very slight. The posted recipe is great for steaks, chicken breast, duck and especially pork. I ve used the recipe from S&A to wow at dinner parties and cookouts for 40 years…classic.

    Someone said that S&A used honey butter…sorry it was just whipped, creamed butter.

    My favorite special recipe from S&A was the burgundy sauteed mushrooms. As a cook in the kitchen we had a few menu hacks that would blow your minds.

    S&A was a fantastic place to work. For those who don’t know it Steak & Ale was a major milestone in the US restaurant industry the peeps who created S&A foods with Norman Brinker changed American dining and ended up creating brands like Olive Garden, Bennigans, etc etc too many to remember

  17. Hi Teresa! To my knowledge, Anthony did not post his friend’s recipe. But I promise, this one is as close as you’ll likely get outside of the original! Let me know if you try it!!

  18. Did Anthony Porcarello ever post his friends recipe for the steak marinade.? His friend used to work there and thought they used brown sugar. We also loved that place

  19. Anthony, we are definitely showing our age but YES; it was the BEST steak you could buy!! Loved the salad bar and mushrooms too. Do let me know when you get the recipe together; I’d love to see your version!!! Thanks for commenting and for being willing to share! Blessings to you!!!

  20. I loved Steak and Ale, It was one of my very Favorite places to go, but I see all these folks posting all these different recipes for the Sauce, I gotta tell ya, I had a very good friend of mine that use to work at Steak and Ale and he told me one of the ingredients was Brown Sugar?? I’m at work so I don’t have the entire recipe with me but when I get home I’m going to go over it and and when I get the whole think I’ll post it, it was by far the very best STEAK you could purchase, their salad bar and mushrooms was the best and for those of us that remember way back when they first opened remember how the menus came to the table?? The were on a Meat Cleaver…OUTSTANDING… sad to see them go. The steak was a Sirlion usually about 1″ to 1 1/2″ thick and very very well marinated

  21. Hi Melissa! I loved their sauteed mushrooms too! And that BREAD!!!!! I believe they served it with honey butter??? Great memories. Thank you so much for sharing yours. Blessings to you!!!

  22. I celebrated many events at Steak & Ale beginning with my 1969 graduation from High School with my brother & best friends. I always ordered a Kensington Filet Minot and could tell with one bite whether it had been marinated long enough or not. I loved there ceasar salad, stuffed mushrooms & hot wholewheat loves of bread. I seldom had room for desert but I loved there real NY Cheescake. It was as good as what I learned to make – 3 times as much cream cheese & half the sugar. That’s the secret to a real NY cheesecake. I am so glad to hear they are coming back.

  23. Robin…..althought the K. Club was our favorite, I also loved the kabobs!!! One of our all time fave restaurants; we hate that it closed. #goodmemories

  24. We always went to one in Houston and they had a husband/wife entertainment who sang great country songs. Took my baby there months after she was born, but she didn’t mind the loud country songs at all. Kensington club was my favorite, and the shish kabobs.

  25. Hi Vivienne, and yes~the mushrooms were fab!!!! Wasn’t it a wonderful restaurant? Such good memories:-) Thanks so much for sharing. Blessings to you!!!

  26. I loved this restaurant dearly , very found memories as a young girl my parents would splurge and we would go to Steak N Ale , my Mom would get the prime rib, my Father would order [my favorite] Kensington Club ,which he would share with me generously…and I would get the Prince Charles with a Shirley temple. I also remember the most wonderful marinated mushrooms I believe they were in a burgundy wine? would love to get that recipe!! thank you for all the comments what a wonderful restaurant.

  27. Hi Michael, I think you are correct about the sirloin cut! Actually, we are just huge filet lovers and use that cut……I’ve never had a bad experience! Do let me know how yours turn out. Thanks for touching base!! Blessings!!!

  28. Please don’t hold me to this , but if I remember right, it was a sirloin, center cut I think. It held up to the long marinating times and yes, three days was the time frame for marinating them. I waited tables for Steak and Ale ( San Antonio TX location) in the late 80’s . Loved the food so much I went to work there! Think I’m going to pick up some ingredients on the way home from work today.

  29. Hi Ken, We always use filet mignons just because that is what we like. I would think any cut would work, even fattier cuts like rib eye. I’d love to hear back from you when you try this. We LOVE this marinade!

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