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Best All-You-Can-Eat Experience, Upscale Division 

Zed 451

739 N. Clark
312-266-6691

zed451.com

I enjoy an endless array of grilled proteins as much as the next person, but if I’m going to pay $44 for it—not including drinks and dessert—I would prefer not to be served by waitstaff in gaucho outfits or develop atherosclerosis before the check comes. Not only does Zed 451 mercifully skip the costumes, it also serves artery-sparing fish, chicken, and game in addition to the usual slabs of steak and sausage. The ahi tuna with miso-soy vinaigrette is pink and perfect; the crab beignets are heavier but not greasy. If you came here for meat, damn it, go for the buttermilk-marinated bottom sirloin or the pork belly with hoisin. Among the soups, salads, charcuterie, and cheeses on the included buffet, the sauteed mushrooms dressed with feta stand out. The atmosphere, too, is on the classy side, though things get louder in the rooftop bar.

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(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)