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Weekend wrap-up: Graham Elliot & The Gage

j
jessicam29 Sep 8, 2009 03:28 PM

Went to visit Chicago from Miami this past weekend. The trip was way too short! Saturday night we ate at Graham Elliot and we really loved it. There isn't quite anything like this place in Miami. We shared three small plates, one meat dish and two desserts.

The crispy buffalo chicken from the "hot" menu was out of this world. I want to say it was dark meat, because it was so tender and flavorful. It was served with some foam (blue cheese?) and a salad of thin sliced celery and greens. The chicken was very crispy. We also ordered the white fish sashimi. I would not normally have ordered white fish, but my SO wanted to try it. The white fish slices were served with plantain chips, avocado puree/cream, and passionfruit sauce. Really delicious! Our third small plate was the corn chowder with garlic marshmallow and corn nuts. Also very delicious.

We shared the bison skirt steak with baked beans, cole slaw, onion rings and root beer bbq sauce. I had never tasted bison but it was very tender and lean.

For dessert, our neighbors at the table next to us told us not to miss the dark chocolate cake. So we ordered that and the strawberry panna cotta. I have to say, I normally would not order chocolate cake (i'm more into creme brulee and tiramisu type of desserts) but having seen our neighbors' serving, it made me want to try it. it was a small rectangular slice of chocolate cake with a mousse-like filling, served with a scoop of some kind of ice cream (tart yogurt?) along with a small piece of salt caramel brittle. AMAZING.

The cocktail that I had was also really good. It was called Gin Blossoms and it was made with hibiscus gin, St. Germain, and prosecco. Delicious. It was not too sweet, but it definitely had floral notes from the gin and St. Germain.

I wish we had more places like this in Miami. I would definitely recommend Graham Elliot. Oh, I almost forgot....because it was my birthday, they gave me a menu signed by the chef and comped one of our desserts. I thought that was a really nice touch.

Sunday Night: The Gage
Totally delicious gastropub. We started with the Speck appetizer, which came with grilled bread and speck (smoked proscuitto) drizzled with honey. SO also ordered the caramelized lobster with quinoa. Tasty with an asian twist. Fish and Chips were awesome. The waitress explained to us that they use vodka in the batter, which has a higher boiling point, so the batter stays crispy. Gage Burger served with caramelized onion and camembert was also great. I substituted the brussels sprouts with bacon and brie as my side. Really good but very rich. Dessert was the chocolate churros. They were good, but not great. Great for chocolate lovers, not great for creamy dessert lovers like me.

Disappointed with the hot dogs in Chicago. We went to Portillos after reading about it on the board but were very disappointed. The actual hot dog lacked in flavor, and they were very stingy on the toppings. We also had great pizza at Giordano's.