I ventured down into the city once again as my friend, Brandon Buchholz, was going to be fighting a mixed martial arts fight that evening and I’m always there to support. Me and my paranoia of timing headed over to the Hyatt in Minneapolis on Nicolette and parked in the ramp there as that was where the venue was being held. I had about 3 hours to spare and figured I’d walk straight down Nicolette and see what I run into. Plus that would really narrow down the risk of me getting lost (those that know me know just how easy that is!).

The restaurant I happened upon was Zelo. I mean come on, the name just pops out at you. The outside of the building wasn’t the only thing that caught my eye. The inside was quite beautiful as well. The atmosphere was very open and elegant. Somehow I new the food was going to follow suit.

I started off the evening with the calamari appetizer which seems to be a new favorite of mine. Unlike the Copper House that was mentioned previously, this dish was coated and seasoned perfectly. The nice thing about the Zelo version was that they paired it with onion petals that tied in well with the calamari.

With Zelo being a nice Italian restaurant, I felt compelled to go with a pasta dish for my entrée. I was not disappointed. I decided on Pablo’s house made ravioli. The words “house made” had caught my eye, and I had to give it a shot. The ingredients and flavors in this dish spoke volumes of the freshness the restaurant strives to deliver. The ravioli was filled with ricotta and reggiano, and then topped with tomato and fresh herbs. These were pictures I actually took, and they look as if they could be featured in a magazine. I had nothing to do with that though, it was all the care that the chef takes in his food.

Finally, it was time for dessert. Keeping with my long term traditions, I started off with the crème brulee. Their version was excellent! The top was carmelized with no big variation in color or burn marks that would throw off the flavor of the vanilla bean infused custard dish. I almost went for another one, but hey, they have a whole dessert menu to choose from!
With the recommendation and cheering from the waitress as I had decided to go for a second dessert, I chose the blueberry cobbler. The cobbler had a warm blueberry compote with a sugar biscuit and a scoop of vanilla gelato. Think of blueberry pie on steroids and BAM, you get this dish.
The staff here was very attentive and I was even checked on by the manger, which is something I always enjoy. I’ve really enjoyed the recent string of restaurants that I’ve been to that value the use of fresh, local ingredients. I highly recommend people search out those types of establishments that can tell you where their ingredients are coming from. You will experience a whole new world of flavors and will even place a new value on the food you prepare yourself. (
Check out thier web site here.)

Unfortunately, the night did end on a sad note as my friend Brandon ended up getting submitted in his fight by a shoulder lock. As always SEG put on a great night of fights that were evenly matched and provided a great night of entertainment.

I would like to let any mixed martial arts fans that read this blog that another night of exciting fights is going to be held at the Target Center on April 28
th. This will feature lots of great local talent and even fighters from Japan! Tickets can be purchased through www.ticketmaster.com.