New: Shazz Cafe and Bar

December 22 2008, 8:10 AM
A month ago, chef Benny Kaplan opened Shazz Cafe and Bar at West 44th Avenue and Lowell Boulevard. The focus: local, seasonal, and farm-to-table--all in a cozy setting. Shazz is certainly not the first area restaurant to draw inspiration from the Slow Food movement, but clean and seasonally appropriate ingredients--look for persimmons, pomegranates, blood oranges, root veggies, and winter squash on the menu--indicate that the restaurant could eventually join the ranks of neighborhood favorites like Duo. While the muscovy duck breast entrée and the red oak salad could use a bit more finesse, I can't stop thinking about the pan-fried haloumi cheese appetizer garnished with gorgeous caperberries, a zing of fresh lemon, and a scattering of herbs. I hear the pistachio kulfi (a dense Indian-style ice cream) is not to be missed, and I'll be sure to return for the treat--not to mention the thoughtful service and the interesting, locally inspired menu. 4262 Lowell Blvd., 303-477-1407