Hello Moto!!

We were watching tv at a friend's house and we saw a show called "Future Food" on the Green Planet network. It's a reality show that follows a pair of chefs who own a Chicago restaurant, with a focus on molecular gastronomy, named Moto.

Honestly, I wasn't that into the show until I saw the back drop to their "confessional" - it was a life-size periodic table wall with each element being a little cubby space. I thought it was the coolest thing.

Fast forward about a week later to one spontaneous Saturday afternoon. We (my husband, his friend, and myself) ended up making 5pm reservations for that night at Moto. We jumped in the car and headed to Chicago.

Based purely on price, we chose the 10 course menu vs the gtm (the gtm came with about 20 courses. Each dish was a tasting menu size, so you left satisfied but not stuffed. I really wanted to analyze each flavor and try not to eat the bite size dishes too fast but there really want's much to analyze. The flavors were simple, good but simple. I felt it was more about the presentation, which is nice. Not too much thinking needed with the meal, other than your imagination.

So, here is what we ate:
White steel
Gruyere & onions - my favorite tasting
Cigar de cuba - my favorite looking
Rabbit maki
Rabe & pork belly
Reuben lasagna
Mexican cannoli
Phad Thai esque
Carrot cake
Tuber melanosporum
I feel like they added an extra dish of a root beer float, but I lost count.

When we first arrived, I was searching for that periodic table wall but didn't see it. The dining room was a lot smaller than I'm used to and I knew there was no way it was here - I was very disappointed. About half way through our dinner, we asked one of our servers where it was and she told us it's downstairs (in a part of the restaurant where you might hold a private party) and she offered to show us!!

We all had our picture taken in front of it. I felt sooo geeky; all the diners were watching us. Then we were greatly surprised when we were offered a chance to see the kitchen and meet the chefs. I was so nervous I said no, but they insisted. It was the coooolest!

It was nothing like I imagined a professional kitchen to be. It was clean and calm!! And by clean I mean uncluttered and minimalistic vs. small and cluttered :). All the chefs were busy, but they took a few moments to say hi and introduce themselves. I just couldn't wipe the smile off my face. I actually felt faint - like when a teeny-bopper meets their favorite boy band. It was either the rush of excitement or all of the nitrous in my food :) either way, I had the best time.

For two people, this meal was about $300 with tip. Very expensive but worth it - for that rare splurge. Luckily, it was near my birthday so it was easy to justify.

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