Recently, I learned about one of America's finest restaurants, Orchids at Palm Court, in Cincinnati's Hilton Netherland Plaza. While there are certainly exceptions, you don't normally remember the food at hotels, let alone find them so pleasurable.
I was reaching back in my mind, trying to remember a hotel meal that made me as happy as Orchids. One that stands out in my mind was about 40 years ago . . . at another Hilton! I grew up near the North Shore Hilton, where they had a little coffee shop named Lindy's. Being another location north of the Ohio River, they served a "Kentucky Hot Brown". I ordered it whenever I could go there, but money was often tight in our family and we went infrequently. One time when I was about 7, I found a bag of money! Looking back on the situation, it was probably a bag of student laundry quarters near Northwestern University. I could have done anything with my found cash. I immediately decided to take my parents out for dinner and had all of us order the Kentucky Hot Brown -- though I'm sure my mom got a diet chicken salad instead. I wanted them to experience what I loved flavor-wise! I guess I found a way to do that for a living now.
So, I was so happy to be hosted to experience the fine cuisine of Chef Todd Kelly. While he normally doesn't make breakfast, I was honored that he did for me. Probably when you read about it, you'll clamor "Breakfast! Breakfast! Breakfast!" and then, he won't have any time for his family or to run marathons or even to sleep. He's so award-winning, I'd say it's amazing, but it's so clearly well-deserved!
Here are some of his accolades:
- a Hilton Signature Chef – one of only six in the USA.
- recognized by the American Culinary Federation when he received the highly respected ‘Chef of the Year’ award for 2011-2012.
- Hilton Hotel’s Number 1 Food & Beverage Hotel in USA – 2010-2013
- OpenTable – One of Top 100 Restaurants in USA – 2011-2013
- OpenTable – One of Top 100 Restaurants in USA for Best Service – 2011-2013
- Gayot – Hot 40 Restaurants – Annual Restaurant issue – 2013
- AAA Four Diamond – 2006 – Current
- Zagat – Top Cincinnati Restaurant – 2011-2013
- Cincinnati Magazine – Number 1 Restaurant in Cincinnati – 2009-2013
- Cincinnati Enquirer – 5 Stars (Highest Rating)
- Where the Locals Eat.com - Fine Dining in Cincinnati – 2009-2012
Orchids has an award-winning pastry chef, too . . . perhaps you've seen her on tv? Megan Ketover who showcased her talent as a ‘Cheftestant’ on Bravo TV’s ‘Top Chef – Just Desserts’ and Food Network’s ‘Challenge’. She's also a runner . . . food for thought with all of those goodies!
The Palm Court is a historic restaurant location, really one of the most glamorous of the Hilton properties world-wide. There are vintage photos of people in white tie and gowns roaming around in there.
To learn more about the flavors, please click the list!
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