Kitchen has become one of our new favorites and each time we go we wonder why we hadn’t tried it sooner. It is a wonderful neighborhood gem nestled in a strip mall next to a laundry mat. The space is intimate with a bar for seating for ~10 people, one larger 6 top table, and about 10-12 other 4 and 2 tops. The tables and space are simple but thoughtfully decorated with chefs white aprons signed by local chefs. The couple behind the restaurant are Dick and Sue Barrows who have been in the restaurant business for years. Dick is the chef and runs the kitchen. Sue manages the front of the restaurant with a warm friendliness that makes you feel as though you have come to their home for dinner. The space is small and they don’t take reservations however, you can take your glass of wine or beverage over to the wonderful independent, Flyleaf Books, as you wait for a table.
While the predominant theme of the menu is French Bistro food with staples such as moules frites, hanger steak and fries, and duck confit, it is difficult to classify Kitchen as a French restaurant. The menu includes a range of dishes including several small plates, both hot and cold, and entrees such as seared salmon and a burger. There is also a board of daily specials which capitalize on seasonal and local ingredients. The small plates are just perfect for us as we love to share dishes. So far on our few visits we have tried several different dishes and have generally enjoyed them all. The Basque Style Shrimp with chorizo, saffron, leeks and gigante beans were probably our least favorite dish as the shrimp were a bit overcooked. The mussels are a great option for sharing. They offer several varieties including Provencal which is prepared with Pernod, tomato, garlic, and herbs; Thai which is prepared with red curry, coconut cream, and lemongrass; and Mariniere which is prepared with white wine, garlic, herbs, and butter. We thoroughly enjoyed the Mariniere moules frites which were perfectly prepared. On another visit we tried the octopus and calamari salad which is a delicious cold salad which was rich with saffron potatoes and punctuated with olives and lemons. The Moroccan lamb meatballs were also a wonderful dish served with eggplant and couscous and the meatballs were light and not dense.
Kitchen is one of our new favorites in Chapel Hill for a relaxing evening out in a warm, friendly environment. My only wish is that we had discovered it earlier!
764 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd
Chapel Hill, NC 27514