From within a 6,000-square-foot lounge space divided into five zones for different moods, Table 45’s chef Zachary Bruell dazzles jaded taste buds with a blend of culinary influences from North Africa, South America, Europe, and Asia. Bruell's interplanetary fusion earned him a Best New Restaurant award from Esquire Magazine in 2007. The current menu raises stomach curtains with a drum roll of curried-sweet-potato soup, a vegan concoction crowned with coconut garnish ($7). The roasted pork chop takes advantage of the restaurant's tandoor oven, emerging piping hot and served alongside succotash-stuffed acorn squash in a butter-herb sauce ($24). Spherical lobster meatballs add curve to flat fettuccine and arrive with fried shallots and dapper, well-shaven fennel in a tomato-and-chardonnay-cream sauce ($24). The clean contours of Table 45’s sleek, ultra-modern décor will make you feel like you’re on a layover to a distant galaxy in a posh Scandinavian starship-port. Reservations are required.
Hailed by Cleveland Magazine as possessing “a culinary sixth sense when it comes to flavor,” Americano chef Vytauras Sasnauskas honed his culinary skills under the tutelage of Loretta Paganini, the celebrated founder of Chesterland’s Loretta Paganini School of Cooking. With roots in Cleveland’s culinary scene that extend back to 1996, it makes sense that Sasnauskas prizes locally harvested ingredients for his menu of daring bistro cuisine. Succulent cuts of beef are drizzled with creative sauces such as brûléed fig and gorgonzola, and traditional comfort foods are reimagined, such as mac 'n' cheese with gourmet flourishes of truffle oil and melted brie. Servers are happy to recommend pairings from a vast drink list that features old-fashioned cocktails and dozens of wines.
Americano is tucked away inside One Bratenahl Place, which creates a secluded vibe. With its smoked mirrors and heavy wooden chairs, the classically elegant dining room serves to tether the whimsical cuisine.
Hailed by Cleveland Magazine for its cuts of USDA prime beef and tableside service, Prime Rib Steakhouse is also known for an effortless elegance, achieved by sleek rows of tables and booths, deep red walls, and chocolaty wood accents. Owner Attila Salka drew upon his experience working in high-end Manhattan and Beverly Hills eateries and traveling around the world when he opened Prime Rib, where he cultivates a European ambiance and a decidedly British theme with dishes such as yorkshire pudding and King Henry VIII prime rib. Chefs prepare dishes tableside, giving guests a full view of the cooking process and creating a culinary experience that’s totally transparent, like a tax return carved into a pane of glass.
Zdara's menu features a bounty of modern Mediterranean dishes for passport-less, travel- hungry tongues. Roll out your mouth's red carpet for starters such as crispy cracked-wheat kibbie, stuffed with spiced ground beef and pine nuts ($7.50), before moving onto heartier dishes accompanied by a treatise on Hannibal's use of war-elephants to teach Romans the fear of circuses. Try the wild mushroom ravioli with asparagus in a goat-cheese cream sauce ($18.50 dinner/$11.50 lunch), or a Boursin chicken sandwich punched up with roasted red pepper and mushrooms on ciabatta bread ($9.50). Line lunchtime stomachs with the chevre omelette, a medley of chicken, sundried tomatoes, and fresh basil with goat cheese ($8.50), or opt for tender lamb shish kebabs with pine nuts and basmati rice ($22.50 dinner/$12.50 lunch).
The first few floors at Tomo Sushi and Hibachi Restaurant and Lounge hold more than 100 tables, and 10 of these are stages. Seated around one of them, you can take in the performance of a master hibachi chef, who speedily dices vegetables and tosses morsels of meat high into the air to give them one last hope of flight before searing them in leaping flames. Feasts of handrolled maki, udon noodles, and crunchy tempura round out the hibachi meals.
Leave behind the crimson walls and stark black decor of the dining area to find a whole other world on the upper levels. Here, a vibrant night club pulsates with dazzling lights, which illuminate craft cocktails and, in the hookah lounge, fragrant vapor.
Servers constantly scan Brasa Grill’s dining room for empty plates, approaching tables with skewers of chicken, lamb, or beef and carving tender pieces tableside. The selection includes 16 different types of savory, grilled meats and a salad bar with more than 40 side dishes, garnering Brasa Grill Cleveland Scene magazine’s award for Best All You Can Eat for Gourmets. The constant parade of hearty fare only relents when diners flip their color-coded token to red, allowing them to sit for a while and stretch their fourth stomachs. Alternatively, the menu also features a small selection of sushi for a lighter version of a high-protein meal.
A painted mural dominates one wall of Brasa Grill’s dining room and depicts a group of Brazilian gauchos as they sear rotisserie meats over open flames, a practice which would later inspire Brazilian-style, churrascaria eateries. The rest of the room embraces a more urban ambiance with its soft lighting, crisp white tablecloths, and stoplight chandeliers.