Midwest Living Review
For just $25, you can enjoy a gourmet meal with ambience to match at the Broadmoor Bistro, where Broadmoor Technical Center culinary students practice their skills on Wednesday nights during the academic year. Although the cooks are still in training, cafeteria food this is not. The facility is affiliated with the James Beard foundation, and Broadmoor students have received more than $750,000 in culinary scholarships and consistently place in national competitions. Although the decor is casually elegant, you never forget where you are -- and that's the point. The restaurant opened in 2008 and showcases the learning happening behind the scenes. Floor-to-ceiling windows reveal students using state-of-the-art ovens, stoves, walk-in coolers, stand mixers and barista equipment. Menus change every few months; on the March night we visited, starters included a lightly sweet ginger-carrot bisque and an unusual savory creme brulee. Medium-rare jerk-rubbed hanger steak didn't require a steak knife, while lightly salted and herbed taro root and parsnip fries were a tasty surprise. For dessert, lime, cherry and raspberry sorbets popped (both in terms of color and flavor) alongside lemon-pistachio shortbread and tangy lemon curd. It's an extraordinary bargain: four courses of delicious food for the price of an entree at most high-end restaurants. There are occasional hiccups in service, which is natural given the venue. Our pleasant waiter seemed nervous and cleared some dishes too quickly, but he gave a great postdinner kitchen tour -- a must-do after such an amazing meal. It's pretty cool to see 60 gas burners and an oven that fits more than 200 pies. Note that reservations are required. Patrons prepay through the website, and menus run for several months. It's easier to correspond with the restaurant online if you have questions.