Ever on the hunt for something new and delicious amidst the general mediocrity of the Chico restaurant market, I heard about a new restaurant opening near my neighborhood. The Kitchen Table is on East Ave in the same little outcropping of buildings where the California Taco truck resides. The California Taco truck, by the way, is a damn treasure. The “Native American Indian taco” with grilled chicken is one of the tastiest things you can get out of a mobile food unit.
Anyway, on to the review! I’ll be reviewing based on décor, service, and food, and assigning an overall score of feedbags based upon these factors. I’d like to say that out of 100 feedbags, The Kitchen Table rates at 85 feedbags. Which is about how many times I’d strap on a feedbag and eat there before getting tired of it, I think.
Anyway, décor: Meh. There were the steampunky-type lightbulbs that everybody is so fond of these days—myself included— but the sunflowers everywhere, the color palette… it felt like I was eating at a preschool in Provence.
Service: Our server was sweet, and apologetic for her inattentiveness (there was a large walrus party in the big room), and we didn’t mind being left alone to eat our food and solve all the world’s problems.
Food: They were out of oysters; the aforementioned large walrus party ate them all. We found plenty of paleo options (we’re brand new baby dino-dieters) and started with the Arugula and Peach Salad. The grilled peaches were sweet and smoky, a nice complement to the spicy arugula, with a tangy white balsamic vinaigrette pulling it all together. I could eat that salad out of a bucket with my hands.
Our main courses were the Braised Beef Short Ribs and Mary’s Tik Thais: jerk-spiced chicken thighs. Warning—the Short Ribs will make you lose your mind. I tapped the seemingly gelatinous mass of short rib with my fork, kind of scared that it had turned straight to goo. The rib fell apart, and was the most perfectly braised piece of animal protein I’ve ever laid my eyes on. #mindblown. The spicy chicken thighs were delightful with just a little creeper heat, but I’m pretty sure the entire menu paled in comparison to the perfection of that short rib. We lapped it all up with some Greens 2 Ways, and a couple splits of Prosecco.
With the kind of hipster food philosophy that The Kitchen Table is touting—seasonal menu featuring local ingredients and sustainable meats and seafood—I was surprised to see zero people under the age of 175 at The Kitchen Table. The entire restaurant was full to capacity with elderly people—the kind you’d normally see at a Hometown Buffet at 4pm. Maybe there was a fire at the Hometown Buffet and everybody got evacuated to The Kitchen Table; I don’t know. Either way, they know what’s up. It might behoove me to follow some fancy old ladies around town to see if they have any other yummy secrets up their sleeves.
The Kitchen Table
1250 East Ave suite 30, Chico, California
Wed – Thu: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Fri – Sat: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Sun: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm