Of course Bixby Daugherty is the local darling known for his recent stint in the kitchen at D'Amico Cucina, though before that he got born in Colorado, went to the prestigious Culinary Institute of America, headed out to the Four Seasons hotel in Washington DC, helped open the Four Seasons hotel in New York, worked at Le Bernardin, then went and opened a fancy hotel in Colorado, and in the process probably learned as much about hotel restaurant service as anyone.

Bixby Daugherty has had his hands full lately, imagining menus for breakfast, lunch, and dinner at Cosmos, as well as room service for the snazzy hotel rooms, about a million elaborate banquet menus, and even a menu for the new nightclub down on the street level. (The nightclub is called Infinity, and should open at the end of the month.) Basically, Cosmos's food will be global, high-style international cuisine created from scrupulously sourced local ingredients. How's that? Well, for breakfast you can have your omelette ($11) made with Star Prairie trout. At lunch you could have a sandwich made from seared Hudson Valley foie gras on peppered brioche with a fig-chestnut purée, caramelized shallots, lettuce, and tomato ($17), or grilled Niman Ranch pork tenderloin with espresso baked beans made with Nueske's bacon in a balsamic brown butter sauce.

And at dinner, well at dinner the head fairly explodes. Here's a salad for you: sliced fresh porcini carpaccio with shaved Reggianno parmesan cheese, micro mizuna which has been FedEx'ed in from a special Ohio farm, for $13. And here's an entrée: Napoleon of hamachi and Iranian golden osetra caviar with a lemon, caper, egg, and parsley sauce ($65: it is real Iranian osetra caviar, after all). Grilled Summerfield Farms lamb chop, which Bixby Daugherty assures me is the best lamb in the world, is raised in the mountains of Colorado and presented here with a confit of its own shoulder, watercress, preserved lemon, currants, Humbolt Fog goat cheese, and Extra Vecchio Balsamico balsamic vinegar, for $30.

Yes, those are in fact local favorites-- Nueske's bacon and Star Prairie Farms trout--in with international stars like Iranian caviar. Bixby Daugherty is also working more local favorites into the rotation, like French Meadow bread and Wild Acres poultry.

"There are basically no limitations on what we can do here," the chef explained--simultaneously unloading $17,000 worth of dry goods into Cosmos's pantry--when I talked to him on the phone for this story. "As the new flagship for the chain, we got to think of what the best possible world would be, with global cooking, and the best ingredients we could find. I got to go down to the Chef's Garden in Ohio, and hand pick the new Cosmos lettuce blend, which is now a special proprietary blend. I also picked all kinds of microherbs and lettuces there, which are FedEx'ed here overnight. One little micro celery leaf from them, it's like taking a bite out of a whole stalk of celery.

"When we first open in May, we'll have baby eels on the menu. They're only in season for a month, and cost $70 a pound, but we're going to try them. Everything at Le Méridien is going to be bumped up a notch. We want to be the best hotel in Minneapolis, if not the entire Midwest. For the cheese service, we're doing a full cheese cart with tableside service from a $3,000 cheese cart; not that the price matters, but you need that cart to do things the right way. It's completely over the top. The art in here is gorgeous. All the china is real Rosenthal bone china. Everywhere you look people are going to go: What the...? It's unique and beautiful."

A restaurant defining super-upscale dining for the entire international jet-set community on the fourth floor of Block E? I'm already going, 'What the...?' And now I trust that you are too.

And now--that's it! I am going to go on vacation, and I don't want anyone opening up any more restaurants that I have to declare the Restaurant Opening of the Century for at least one solid month! I remember when you all just sat around on your porch swings agreeing on how much you liked Cafe Latté, those were the days. A girl could catch her breath now and then. So settle down out there already! I don't want any more staggeringly ambitious, bar-raising restaurants, not from a one of you!

Well, with the possible exception of Harvey McLain and the Turtle Bread crew. But that is my final offer. In the meantime, flood my e-mail box with your impressions of Cosmos, and I'll try to knock over some out-of-the-way bank so I can review the joint. For most of the summer Le Méridien will have special opening rates of $169-$219 a night for rooms, and after that, the regular rates will debut: $389 to $409. Is that a unique floating effect I feel? Cosmos should already be open when this hits the stands, at 601 First Avenue N., Minneapolis; 612.677.1100.

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