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Back Issues
2012 - Summer Issue
¡Comidas Sabrosas!
Restaurant Opening
Article: Jessica Muncrief
Photos: Bill Faulkner
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Chef Michael Ross is a true food connoisseur. Having studied and worked in kitchens all over the world, his cooking style embraces a number of different cuisines and flavors which he is now sharing with El Paso. Earlier this year he opened Opus World Bistro in the Colony Cove II plaza on North Mesa Street. Michael took the standard restaurant concept a step further by deciding to introduce a number of different flavors from all over the globe instead of just focusing on one particular cuisine. The result is a diverse menu featuring steak, chicken, pork, seafood and pasta dishes that incorporate specialty ingredients for authentic flare and lots of flavor. For a trip around the world without ever leaving El Paso, Opus Bistro is a must visit for exceptional food and fine wines in an enjoyable atmosphere.


Opus World Bistro
7128 N Mesa St.
El Paso, TX 79912
"El Paso was halfway between where I was and where I thought I was going," explains Michael when asked how a Culinary Institute of America graduate that has honed his skills in hotels, restaurants and resorts from Belgium to Atlantic City ended up in this neck of the woods. On his way from south Florida to the West Coast, fate presented Michael with a position as the executive chef at the esteemed Camino Real hotel. He also served as the executive chef at the El Paso Country Club and worked in the food sales industry before deciding to open his own eatery.

The venue was formerly the popular Italian restaurant Il Posto before Michael took over, updating and revamping the concept for something truly unique. "We've made it more eclectic, with various world cuisines, not just Italian," says Michael. In fact, the word "opus" refers to a symphony or a grouping of a number of different musical compositions. Michael and his team have successfully fulfilled his vision of recreating this fusion using food instead of music.

A visit to Opus World Bistro can take you from the Middle East with the sautéed chicken Jerusalem with crimini mushroom, artichoke and sherry cream, to France for a spinach and duck confit dish, to Asia with an Oriental chicken salad with Chinese vegetables, rice noodles and sesame dressing. You can even get dishes inspired by the good old USA, like the New Orleans gumbo ya ya. If you loved the Italian fare previously offered at the venue, don't worry, the Opus menu features a grilled pizza with tomatoes, chicken and goat cheese as well as authentic pasta dishes like linguini carbonara with pancetta, pepper, garlic, cream and parmesan cheese.

In addition to full-size plates, you can also pick and choose a variety of smaller dishes for the entire table to sample. This type of eating is very common internationally. The small plates menu includes enticing choices like the fried artichoke hearts with garlic cream sauce or delightfully crispy vegetable spring rolls with a sweet orange chili sauce. For those who enjoy soups and salads, Opus has an eclectic range of options that you would be hard pressed to find anywhere else. The stuffed piquiollo peppers, for example, are delicious. These sweet red peppers are generously stuffed with a salad mixture of crab, capers and sherry shallots vinaigrette, creating an enticing mix of unexpected flavors.

Despite all the attractive dinner and lunch options, you must also stop in for brunch on Sunday. Opus has a fantastic brunch buffet with a wide assortment of hot and cold dishes. You can also order a la carte, choosing from options like Belgium waffles or a tender filet medallion with red chile demi and goat cheese. The cinnamon roll and the French toast with pecan and banana fosters sauce come very highly recommended. If you're still hungry, feel free to add on the buffet. You get it at half price when you order off the menu. Whether you order a la carte or try the buffet, endless mimosas are included!

You'd think Michael and his team wouldn't have time for anything else, but as you've probably realized, Opus isn't your typical restaurant. They also do catering and private parties as well as hosting special events and performances at the restaurant. They've had everything from live music nights to 5-course wine dinners and even interactive dinner theatre evenings. There's simply no doubt that Opus World Bistro offers something for everybody. ///
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