WHO is that hot blonde? Ahhh simmer down, it's just me, Gia, in a mood to be Lada GaGa for a night. Why not right? It was a night to remember for sure. The festivities kicked off at a most desired restaurant, Graham Elliot appropriately located in the Gallery District. If you've never heard of this place you must Google it immediately because A. the website is very cool, and B. it's AMAZING. Housed in a 19th Century printing warehouse the vibe is hip, relaxed but buzzing with ultra cool people (Gaga included). As Graham puts it, the menu is a juxtaposition of four star cuisine with humor and accessibility. When our server mentioned that the Chef was once known to crack up Altoids and Cheezits out of the vending machine to complement various meals I knew I was in the right place. Truly, this is Chicago's first "Bistronomic" restaurant.
Ordering almost an entire side of the menu I sat back and awaited the meal to begin with a delicious glass of Chardonnay and to my surprise a basket of popcorn? Indeed, like nothing Orville could create. This had garlic and truffle oil and I was horking it down like I was in a movie theatre. Not my best idea as there were crumbs lining the front of my shirt like I hadn't seen food in a decade. Regardless, I swished it off and resumed my position for this gastronomic experience. The portions were small but there were many of them. Nothing was done in typical fashion. Each piece was done like a painting on a canvas. Caesar salad, Beet Salad, Bisque, Macaroni (more garlic and truffle oil), Scallops, Beef. They were all exquisite! The flavors and presentation were all very unique and tasted rich, yet subtle as you could easily move through all the courses without feeling like you've overeaten (not that I would know of course). The desert plate was a chocolate combination of Guinness/malt/cocoa, which I enjoyed with a glass of NV Pineto, Brachetto, Piedmonte from Italy. It was THE best desert wine and complemented the chocolate deliciously.
Though not an inexpensive start to the night I would say it is a PERFECT date night. Especially if your date is picking up the tab and they happen to be a VP, Surgeon, or Entrepreneur - you get what I'm saying, not a first date "we'll see how it goes" kinda night.
Needless to say, blonde wig in tow the night kicked up quite a bit and ended in a strange twist of events. From Crobar to Spy Bar I just couldn't keep the blonde thing up and ended up in my a la natural self....a little wiser...and as always...a little crazier.
Next week I cook on lava rocks. Stay tuned!
Graham Elliot is located at 217 W. Huron St. Chicago, IL 312.624.9975
In these photos: Gia Claire, Professional Bloggess and unnamed super cool guy!
Labels: Chicago dating and dining, dating and dining, new restaurants