If humankind never learned to play with its food, it would never have learned to play with its ingredients, and the world would be one bereft bowl of gruel. Taste the fruits of culinary creativity with today’s Groupon: for $35, you get $75 worth of contemporary American cuisine at Zealous Restaurant.
Zealous reels in future foodies with artfully prepared, Zagat-rated dishes culled from contemporary American recipes infused with a global twist. Chef and owner Michael Taus keeps tasters on their toes with a menu lineup that changes with the seasons and the visions that appear in his crystal soup bowl. Diners can round up roaming appetites with szechuan blue-crab cakes crowned with soy mayo, a hoisin glaze, and grilled bok choy ($13). Seared sea scallops arrive with smoked freekeh-and-date purée ($30), and sesame-crusted Chilean sea bass swims in pan-fried rice noodles and red coconut-curry sauce ($32). Meat-lovers can tear into a 16-ounce rib eye ($41), served with creamed-spinach gratin and truffle-potato croquettes, while veggie fans can cozy up to eggplant gâteau ($19), accompanied by Greek-style green beans, petite tomato, and feta cheese salad. Side dishes of truffle mashed potatoes ($7) ride shotgun in culinary Cadillacs to help their main-event dishes shake down petulant hunger pangs.
Inside the house of Taus, mossy greens and natural hues accentuate the restaurant’s spaciousness—Zealous is a converted warehouse designed by architect William Leeds. The visual focus is a 15-foot, glass-enclosed wine cellar, home to more than 750 wine selections and a rare collection of petrified ships in bottles.