Sunday, May 10, 2009
ZED 451 - CHICAGO, IL
When friends recommended a place called ZED 451 I did not know what to expect. We had no clue what type of food or place this was. When they told us that a van would pick us up a our hotel and take us to and from the restaurant for free I was even more interested in finding out what this place was all about. The van arrived on time and we had a driver that was happy to be a tour guide on the way to the restaurant. This was really nice touch. We entered ZED 451 and were quickly greeted with warm smiles and a great welcome. The hostess brought us to the bar area to wait for our guests. A warm fire pit on one side and a beautiful glass enclosed wine cellar set the tone for what turned out to be one of the best meals of my life. The bar area was filled with thirty something men and woman sipping on Martini's and wine. Turns out there is a beautiful rooftop bar here that has dramatic views of the city and is quite the place when the weather is warm. Our guests arrived and we were seated at a large table in a beautiful circular room with two large half round buffet tables in the middle. I still had no clue on what was to be served here. Just saw the tables in the middle filled with salads. O.K. this must be a buffet. Great I am starving. We were lead to the "Harvest Tables" which were filled with salads, cheeses, bread and vegetables. Here are just a few; Turkey Cobb Salad with Mustard Dressing, Red Bliss Potato Salad with Sherry and Whole Grain Vinaigrette, Roasted Beets, Broccoli and Toasted Sesame with Miso, Sauteed Wild Mushrooms, Sweet Corn Salad, Chilled Raviolis with Pesto, Sliced Tomato, Mozzarella and Red Onion, Heirloom Tomato and Asparagus, Spicy Long Bean Salad, Ginger and Cucumber Salad and more and more and more.
The salads were all top quality and I enjoyed them all. After all this I still had no clue on what the main course would be as I do not recall ever looking at a menu. Then they came. The chefs in white coats and hats. Each one carrying a different meat dish on a skewer. One after another they circled our table. Non-stop for what seemed to be hours. As the wine flowed so did the food. I was totally blown away by the flavors of each meat course. They were all unique and bold. The service was impeccable and the company around us was to be enjoyed for a lifetime.
Are you ready for the main course items. Well here you go. All served table side and hand carved by the chefs; Rubbed Tuna Filet with Miso Soy Vinaigrette, Slow Roasted Beef Ribs with Creamy Horseradish, Grilled Bison Loin with Red Wine Chili Glaze, Buttermilk and Herb Marinated Bottom Sirloin (unreal good), Moroccan Marinated Chicken Breast, Oven Roasted Duck with Pistachio Orange Glaze, Whole Roasted Leg of Lamb, Crispy Tempura Mahi Mahi,
Jerk Marinated Pork, St. Louis Style BBQ Ribs, Chili- Rubbed Ribeye, Seasoned Rump Roast,
Citrus Atlantic Salmon, Linguica Pork Sausage with Homemade Honey Mustard (Awesome), Roasted Garlic Steak, Seared Venison and Tropical Seared Wahoo. ALL THIS FOR $49.
I LOVED ZEN 451. THE ATMOSPHERE, SERVICE AND FOOD ARE EXCELLENT. PROBABLY ONE OF THE NICEST AND TASTIEST DINNERS OF MY LIFE.