Tasting menus can be hard to come by these days, especially in metro areas where quirky and unique restaurants reign supreme. But occasionally, a good tasting menu can be found that is hand-picked by the restaurant chef themselves. So, when it comes to those nights on the town where you want to be surprised, try out these restaurants with the top chef tasting menus.
See our latest Best Tasting Menus In Detroit article here.
Iridescence — MotorCity Casino
2901 Grand River Ave
Detroit, MI 48201
Price: $55 for three-course tasting menu ($95 with wine pairings); $65 for five-course tasting menu ($105 with wine pairings)
MotorCity casino and hotel is a Detroit gem that many go to for great entertainment and food. One of the restaurants in MotorCity is Iridescence, a colorful dining establishment named Restaurant of the Year in 2011 by Hour Detroit. The restaurant offers both a chef’s tasting menu and regular menu, but who in their right mind would say no to a menu compiled by the experts? With plates featuring grilled five-ounce filets with glazed root vegetables, blackened shrimp with a chipotle pepper sauce or sautéed jumbo crab cakes with a lemon vinaigrette, Iridesence is perfect for special occasions and more adventurous foodies. When it comes to chef’s tasting, Iridescence is an extremely affordable option.
4421 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48201
Price: Available upon request
Elegance, poise and sophistication are just some of the words that best describe The Whitney, a historical Detroit restaurant and bar. When it comes to creating upscale American food, The Whitney will always provide the best cuts of beef, pork, chicken, veal, duck and seafood. Want a 10-ounce New York strip or maybe a duck glazed in truffle mushroom cream? No problem. While the Whitney does do catering and offers a regular menu, it also offers a wonderful chef’s tasting menu that is available upon request at the restaurant. Wine pairings are also available with the chef’s tasting from its award-winning wine cellar that houses some of the best red and white wine found in Detroit. Don’t miss out on this elegant fare.
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670 Lothrop Road
Detroit, MI 48202
Price: $60 for Progression Menu 1; $90 for Progression Menu 2; $60 for Vegetarian Progression Menu
Located in a refurbished, Victorian-era house in the New Center area of Detroit, Cuisine offers an upscale, sophisticated dining experience for people looking to try authentic French food (or cuisine, as the name suggests). The area surrounding Cuisine is dotted with large trees, art studios and other businesses with a romantic ambience calling back to Victorian times. As for the menu, Cuisine offers both a regular menu as well as a tasting menu that can be coupled with wine pairings for an additional charge. Most of Cuisine’s fare is seafood, from scallops to shrimp and sturgeon to lobster. However, Cuisine can also offer upscale plates of foie gras and veal with freshly baked bread made in-house. Another unique trait about Cuisine is its vegetarian tasting menu which offers corn risotto and buttered quinoa among other dishes. This is another restaurant sure to please those palates looking for something beyond the normal, casual restaurant.
Saltwater — MGM Grand
1777 3rd St
Detroit, MI 48226
Price: $39 for three-course prix-fixe menu ($59 with wine pairings)
Saltwater in the MGM Grand is lucky to have Chef Michael Mina in its kitchen preparing food in a truly impressive way. With a name like Saltwater, you can probably guess that seafood has great emphasis in the cuisine. If you make a stop to this spot before 7:30 p.m., enjoy a lineup of dishes for a shockingly affordable price. Commit to Saltwater’s three-course menu and indulge in your choice of appetizer, entree and dessert. A potential spread could include lobster chowder with applewood-smoked bacon and carrots, herb-roasted chicken with fingerling potatoes, forest mushrooms and mustard jus and a conclusion of butterscotch pudding with brown sugar gelee and oatmeal crisp. Whatever you choose for each course, all options will leave you more than satisfied.
A bit out of town:
Grange Kitchen and Bar
118 W Liberty St
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Price: $49 for five-course tasting menu ($74 with beverage pairings)
Though it is a bit of a hike for most Detroit residents, Grange in downtown Ann Arbor is another restaurant offering some of the best chef’s tasting that southeastern Michigan can provide. Head Chef Brandon Johns created Grange with the idea of using only the best and freshest ingredients found in the Ann Arbor area to promote sustainability, and it really shines both on the regular menu and tasting menu. Unlike other tasting menus, Grange provides a constantly changing menu where patrons won’t normally experience the same food twice. Everything on the chef’s menu is changed daily and requires full participation of the entire table in order to be requested. However, with items on the regular menu like fried pigs head and chicken bits, this tasting menu is sure to be a very pleasant experience for those looking for something different.
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Stephanie Medeiros has been an avid music enthusiast most of her life, most notably helping local bands promote their hard work through marketing and PR as well as continuously giving reviews and feedback on music and to aspiring musicians alike. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.