Arts & Entertainment

Restaurant Spotlight: Open Kitchen

spotlightOpen Kitchen is not like the other upscale Falls Church dining areas.

For one thing, Open Kitchen is one of the few places where the word “timeshare” does not have a negative connotation, as it means that a chef can come in and rent out the kitchen for the purpose of creating culinary masterpieces, which is what Open Kitchen excels at making. Oddly located in the bottom floor of the West Metro Plaza, the restaurant gives a scenic view of Falls Church and the Don Beyer Volvo parking lot.

spotlight

Open Kitchen (Photo: News-Press)

 

Open Kitchen is not like the other upscale Falls Church dining areas.

For one thing, Open Kitchen is one of the few places where the word “timeshare” does not have a negative connotation, as it means that a chef can come in and rent out the kitchen for the purpose of creating culinary masterpieces, which is what Open Kitchen excels at making. Oddly located in the bottom floor of the West Metro Plaza, the restaurant gives a scenic view of Falls Church and the Don Beyer Volvo parking lot.

But with food this good, the incredibly friendly staff could have sat me up against a brick wall and I wouldn’t have complained. As the name implies, the restaurant is essentially a large open area with a bar that looks like a giant cutting board and a kitchen in full view of the patrons, so that you can observe the chefs working on the art that is your meal.

The lunch menu is based around subtle twists on Mediterranean, Italian and French food, with hints of unusual spices helping diners take in every possible flavor that a dish has to offer. The complementary foccacia bread is light and warm, although it couldn’t hurt them to jazz up the olive oil just a little.

The mini crab cakes, set in eight tiny spoons with a coriander sauce, were lightly breaded and filling without being remotely greasy or heavy like many crab cakes can be. The antipasto sandwich, while a little too salty, is nevertheless an incredible mix of prosciutto, green-olive tapenade, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella and arugula all served on light warm foccacia bread. The tuna provencal sandwich was a wonderful citrusy dream that has just enough of a crust to make it interesting without taking anything away from tuna, scientifically proven to be the most delicious fish known to man. Open Kitchen understands this, and does not dress up the tuna any more than they need to.

So now you’re addicted to the food (as you should be) and want to learn how to attempt to recreate the magic in your own kitchen. Open Kitchen regularly offers cooking classes on subjects such as mushrooms, wine pairings and grilling with beer.

Though slightly pricey at $75 a class, the accompanying meal and knowledge gained are invaluable to anyone with an interest in cooking. Private events can also be booked if you are afraid of learning how to make delicious meals in front of strangers and would rather bring your entourage. Either way, more people going to high-quality cooking classes can only mean more delicious food in the community, which benefits everyone. Furthermore, Open Kitchen’s involvement in the Falls Church community, mostly by buying local at the Falls Church Farmer’s Market, shows that they are interested in bettering the community in ways besides providing a comforting place to eat amazing food at reasonable prices.

Owner Hue-Chan Karels started open kitchen with the purpose of finding an affordable and licensed kitchen space to rent in order to make cookies. By discovering that many other budding chefs in the area needed the same thing, she decided to create a place where chefs could come together to work by the motto of “Eat, Cook and Entertain”, all three of which Open Kitchen succeeds at tremendously. Go here to overlook Falls Church in all its glory and relax with great food, quality wine and an unbeatable atmosphere.

Open Kitchen

7115 Leesburg Pike, #107, Falls Church

openkitchen-dcmetro.com • 703-942-8148

Hours:

Monday – Wednesday, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.;

Thursday – Friday, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. & 5 – 10 p.m.;

Saturday, 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.


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