Team Top Chef's Editor dishes about her Windy City meal.

May 28, 2008

OK -- now onto the fun stuff (for me): My trip to Chicago! (Warning: Foodie fan bragging commencing ...) This past Saturday night, I had the pleasure of dining at Tramonto's Steak & Seafood. I had the advantage of having a reservation set up through Chef Tramonto and Gand's "people," and I certainly got the star treatment. I arrived at the restaurant which resides in the Westin Hotel in Wheeling, IL with four of my girlfriends and was warmly greeted by a lovely man named Tim Rice (If I'm wrong, I apologize!) and an invitation to a viewing party the restaurant was throwing to watch tonight's episode with Rick himself! (If anyone went to the event, please write in!) We were quickly shown to our table, which was the private wine room adjacent to the open kitchen! My eyes couldn't have opened any wider when I saw where they were putting us. The room was beautiful and we were surrounded by just a sampling of the 10,000 bottles of wine in the restaurant's selection. We were greeted by lovely servers and a sommelier named Jamie, who helped us choose our reasonably-priced (wink) Pinot Noir.

After a lot of gawking, it was time to order. Shockingly, I was the only one in my party of five that eats steak! Either the other girls were vegetarian or Kosher and had to stick with the fish and seafood options. Our obscenely helpful server, Edith, came out with the very tomahawk chop featured in the episode, but at 40 oz. I couldn't justify ordering it for myself. Although the filets were the only cuts small enough for one, I ordered the bone-in rib-eye as I had heard it was the best cut on the menu because of its marbling, and I'd just take home the leftovers. I also ordered the goat cheese potato gratin at Edith's recommendation and one of my friends ordered the black truffle mac 'n cheese. Before even our appetizers came, we were greeted with an amuse bouche sent by the chefs. Seriously, I was already floored by where we were seated, but this was too much. Obviously the chefs think i am more of a somebody at Bravo than I am, but who was I to argue?