A Falls Church Delight: Open Kitchen
I think, that over the last 6 years of dating/marriage, I’ve officially turned Dario into a foodie. Ok, a junior foodie, but a foodie nonetheless! He has really come to learn a lot about food and enjoys tasting and trying new things. One of our favorite food-inspired activities is researching and trying new restaurants in the area. We’re lucky that the DC metro area is full of all kinds of wonderful restaurants – we never have a short list of places to try.
The most recent excursion was to a small restaurant in Falls Church, VA called Open Kitchen. I found this place through a random search online, but was super impressed by their menu and “food philosophy” as the Chef calls it – “Honoring the farm-to-table spirit, Open Kitchen is committed to providing guests with handmade foods using fresh and sustainable ingredients. Our culinary team source from local food producers and stay as organic and natural as possible.” Just my typa place!
The evening began with a wonderful bottle of a local Virginia wine – you can never go wrong with VA wine. From my previous research, I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted to order already, but were intrigued with all of their specials, particularly the “Chef’s Whim”. We decided on the Homemade Cornbread with Salted Honey Butter, Soup Du Jour – Chilled Roasted Corn and Basil Soup, and the Chef’s Whim which was a Beet Carpacchio over Arugula with Smoked Blue Cheese. Plus you’re automatically served warmed homemade Italian bread with a salt and pepper topping.
Where to begin…the cornbread was so light and fluffy. It sort of melted in your mouth. And that salted honey butter, to die for! The chilled corn and basil soup was incredibly amazing. It had such an intense basil flavor – I’m not sure how they got it in there without turning the soup green. The slight sweetness from the corn completed it wonderfully. Lastly, the beet carpacchio salad was also excellent. I particularly liked the smoked blue cheese on top. The smoky tart cheese paired perfectly with the sweet beets.
Now on to the entrees! I ordered the Grilled Arctic Char over a Artichoke and Sundried Tomato Hash while Dario went with the Spring Vegetable Risotto. Both were fabulous, though I have to say I really enjoyed the artichoke hash that came with my dish. The risotto was very creamy and filled with roasted corn, red peppers, peas, asparagus and other vegetables. The perfect Spring-time dish.
Of course, we couldn’t end the evening without sampling one of their delectable sounding desserts. We ended up choosing the Flourless Mexican Chocolate Torte with Red Wine Sour Cherries and a Salted Caramel Sauce. If you’re not already drooling over that just from the name, you’d definitely be once you had one bite! The cake was rich and decadent. The caramel and cherries really brightened up the dish and added a wonderful light and tart note. It was phenomenal.
Overall, I’d give this place an A+. Price-wise, it was expensive, but both Dario and I agreed it was completely worth it (just not a once a week place). We will definitely be returning again in the near future. I hope for all those local residents, you give Open Kitchen a try. You (or your tastebuds) won’t be disappointed!
You tell me! What’s your favorite local VA restaurant? What’s your favorite type of food to eat out? Have you been to Open Kitchen in Falls Church?