Grabbing lunch over the noon hour is usually a nice little respite to one’s busy day. Well, Chaz on the Plaza wants you to enjoy their stellar lunch offerings at half the price through the month of October—you just need to get there a little early. “All our food items are half-off between 11am-12pm,” says Jordan Carver, the director of food and beverage at The Raphael. “We like to think of it as a ‘lunch happy hour’—to get people in a little earlier than usual.” (FYI—the special is only available for dine-in through the end of this month.)
Why is Chaz unveiling such an enticing deal?
To be honest, Joe Cizek, the executive chef, has some amazing recipes up his sleeve and he wants you to try them. Yep, it’s that simple. He also wants to take the hidden out of Chaz’s hidden gem status. “We want to give people a chance to experience a Chaz lunch,” says Cizek. “We might not be the first place you might think of for a lunch, but we have a great selection. People know us for our dinner menu or our brunch menu, but maybe going to a hotel might not be the first thing they think of for lunch.”
Turns out, Chaz on the Plaza is the quintessential place for lunch—and a versatile one at that. Trying to close a business deal? “We have several nice private booths with your name on them,” says Cizek. Need something quick? “Sit up here and have a casual conversation at the bar—with or without drinks,” says Cizek. Or feel free to grab a table on Chaz’s cozy outdoor patio overlooking the Plaza while the gorgeous fall weather is still clement. “If you’re here to come and have a couple martinis, we’re not here to judge,” Cizek laughs. On the day we visited, a gaggle of ladies came in to enjoy desserts and several boozy coffee drinks—to which we say, “Atta girls!”
For Chef Joe, he knows his menu is on-point. It’s a savory mix of lighter lunch fare and some heartier entrees thrown in for good measure. His favorite lunch dish arrived at our table not long after we sat down. “My favorite thing is the fried chicken salad right now. It comes with the roasted beets for earthiness and a honey-mustard dressing that gives it little bit of spiciness,” says Cizek. “And then what really kicks it up? Our baked bacon jam. Bacon + brown sugar + bourbon. It’s the perfect salad.”
For years the most popular thing on Chaz’s menu was their killer, perfectly prepared filet—key word being was. “Our pan-roasted salmon is our number one seller for both lunchanddinner. It’s the first time anything has ever sold more than the filet,” says Cizek. “It’s a nice combo. We do it with a lemon-dill sauce. Little bit of white wine, cream and lots of lemon in the sauce—nice and bright, and we top it with micro-dill on a bed of linguine and some fresh peas. It’s anything but typical—and perfect for lunch.”
Even better? Get in toward the tail end of this month to see Cizek unveil his new seasonal fall menu. “There’s an upcoming spinach salad tossed with port wine poached pears and topped with salmon that’s coming up,” says Carver. “That would be my pick.”
With Chaz’s half-off lunch special going on through the end of October, it’s the perfect opportunity to get out of your lunch rut and try some place new. There’s convenient on-site parking or free valet at the Raphael. “We want to make it a fun place—a place that fits all the needs,” says Cizek. “We have a lot of businesses nearby who don’t recognize that we’re a great place for lunch—and we are.”