Steak 48: A perfect blend of elegance, ambiance and gastronomy

Steak 48 opens on Friday, July 14 and it's already on my list of favorites! We went to a soft opening last night that benefited the Joffrey Ballet and we loved every, single, delicious moment of this elegant, cozy dining experience located at 615 N. Wabash.

Jeffrey and Mike Mastro and their father Dennis Mastro, the founders and creators of the celebrated restaurant brands, Mastro’s Steakhouse and Mastro's Ocean Club, alongside partner Scott Troilo, are bringing their newest concept, Steak 48, to the River North neighborhood this weekend. Oliver Badgio, who serves as Chief Brand Officer and has been with the Mastro family since the early '90s, will be involved as well.

The 12,000-square-foot, two-story restaurant houses a unique and stylish collection of intimate spaces designed by Judith Testani of Scottsdale-based Testani Design Troupe. Every nook and cranny is filled with tempting eye-candy, be it through the decor or food choices.

From the moment we entered, we knew this would become a regular haunt of ours. Chuck even commented about how nice it will be to dine there while watching a beautiful snowfall from the windows. And any restaurant that offers lavender-infused hot towels to diners, not once but twice throughout the meal, has my undying loyalty.

We ordered a rib-eye and tuna poke for entrees with an exciting selection of starters and sides. The fried deviled eggs were a taste sensation as was the dramatic Beignet Tree we ordered for dessert.

And even though the restaurant offers a classic steakhouse menu, there are so many other dishes by Chefs Marc Lupino and Brian Key to tempt you like Shetland Island salmon, prime steakhouse meatloaf, Chef's PB&J (paté, fig jam and Woodford Reserve bourbon), Alaskan king crab and rock shrimp mac & cheese and on and on and on!

Highlights include an 800-square-foot patio (with breathtaking views of Medinah Temple) where a second beautiful bar is located, a floor-to ceiling glass expo kitchen, intimate dining kitchen suites and multiple dining rooms featuring gorgeous architectural details. The wine program includes 50 wines-by-the-glass and over 150 by-the-bottle!

 Steak 48 is part of Arizona’s distinguished restaurant group, Prime Steak Concepts, which also owns and operates a trio of successful signature fine dining steakhouses, including Dominick’s Steakhouse and Steak 44 in Phoenix and Steak 48 in Houston.

During several nights of soft openings, the restaurant was turned over to fundraisers for Blessings in a Backpack (hosted by Chicago Bear all-pro Kyle Long on Sunday night); YWCA Metropolitan Chicago (hosted by CEO Dorri McWhorter and Kathleen Henson on Tuesday night); Lurie Children's Foundation (co-hosted by the Medical Center Board, member Manuel "Manny" Sanchez and the Children's Service Board on Wednesday night) and Ronald McDonald Charities on Thursday night hosted by Kathleen Henson (whose PR firm is the agency of choice for the restaurant).

I highly recommend this elegant, yet cozy dining spot and was happy to see so many familiar faces who work there now, like Charlie Gitto! I also love their philanthropic efforts on behalf of the Chicago community. Food, fundraising, elegance and ambiance--all watchwords for this cool new player in the city's restaurant scene.

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