Like all the best combinations, Latin-Indian fusion cannot be cracked by turning the dial and listening for clicks. Sample unbreakable fare with today's Groupon to Vermilion. Choose between the following options:
• For $60, you get a five-course tasting menu of items designed for the TV shows Chopped, Iron Chef America, and The Next Iron Chef (a $120 value).
• For $30, you get $60 worth of Indian-Latin tapas, entrees, and desserts.
Keeping its award-winning dinner menu on its toes, Time-praised Vermilion periodically unveils a tasting menu of 10 fusion dishes crafted by executive chef Maneet Chauhan during spontaneous cooking challenges on the Food Network’s Chopped and The Next Iron Chef, and in a battle against chef Masaharu Morimoto on Iron Chef America. Global journeys commence with Spanish anchovy boquerones, which are more exhilarating than a mentholated dunk tank. Fish papadum tacos and feta-dressed kebab dogs serenade palates in subsequent courses, crescendoing in two mystery-basket entrees prepared from a choice of more than 30 ingredients. Sweet teeth bid adieu to their dining adventure by biting into berry-kissed avocado beignets. Guests who choose the second option may enjoy dishes from Vermilion’s standard menus, including Brazilian seafood caldeirada ($25) and a duo of chimichurri New York strip steak and Gourmet-lauded lobster Portuguese ($55).
The sleek dining room at Vermilion shelters tables clothed with snowy linens under onyx ceilings with clear fixtures and ivory walls sporting black-and-white photographs, saving vivid colors for the dynamic kitchen creations.
Vermilion has garnered a great deal of press and accolades over the years. From being named one of Chicago magazine’s Best New Restaurants of 2004 to gracing the pages of Esquire in an article titled "15 More Restaurants Not to Miss," the restaurant is no stranger to the spotlight. And at the heart of its success is Rohini Dey, a former consultant who, in 2003, decided to dive whisk first into the restaurant biz. Inspired by her Indian heritage, Dey set out to re-engineer the country’s traditional approach, fusing contemporary homeland flavors with elements of similarly bold Latin cuisine. The restaurant is also now offering a new relaunched menu designed by chefs Anup Patwal & Javier Alvarez, who were featured on the CNBC show Consumed.
At Vermilion’s Chicago and New York City locations, the chefs craft meat and vegetarian fusions. Some of their most successful creations include the Gourmet-lauded duck-vindaloo arepas, lobster tail stewed in coconut-and-curry-leaf gravy, which was named the top dish worldwide by USA Today in 2004, and the tandoori skirt steak, hailed by Esquire Vermilion's chefs have competed on Iron Chef, Top Chef and judged Chopped.
Vermilion has also been praised for its goal of bringing women into high-profile culinary positions. In fact, Dey partnered with the James Beard Foundation to do just that via the Women in Culinary Leadership program. The program has since earned praise from the likes of CBS and The Wall Street Journal.