fiancé and I consider ourselves nacho connoisseurs. We’ve scoured
the city in search of the tastiest take on the Mexican mainstay, and
if there’s a nacho dish on the menu, it’s likely we’ve tried it.
Local restaurants are reinventing the dish’s flavor profile, often
focusing on a distinctive protein, and leading contenders include
versions topped with barbecue pulled pork or buffalo chicken. But time
and time again, we find ourselves returning to Balzac, the
European-inspired wine bar and small plates eatery located just north
of Brady Street, to indulge in our top pick — the restaurant’s
general manager and head chef, Rebecca Berkshire, says the dish was
originally developed by the restaurant’s owner, Leslie Montemurro.
"We braise whole duck from Maple Leaf Farms in lots of wine and
aromatics until it’s fall-off-the-bone tender," Berkshire
explains. "The cheese component of the dish is comprised of some
Wisconsin-made Swiss and mozzarella cheeses along with a good old
processed pepperjack to help keep them melted as you eat them."
House-made corn chips, pico de gallo, scallion creme and bacon
crumbles complete the plate.
The proof of the
dish’s success is evident in its tremendous popularity with diners.
"I can say that we sold nearly 6,000 orders of duck nachos in
2014," says Berkshire. 1716 N. Arlington Place, (414) 755-0099,