Learning “how to” is the first step in dining etiquette, which is why I can appreciate a place like Open Kitchen. Located on Leesburg Pike in Falls Church, Virginia, Open Kitchen offers guests more than food and wines to drink, the restaurant teaches you how to select wines and cook your food. Recently, I visited to get a taste of what the certified Virginia Green restaurant was serving up. After an array of chicken chorizo skewers, heirloom tomato & mozzarella salad, seared spiced-crusted jumbo scallops, Open Kitchen’s summer vegetable risotto and lobster bread pudding, I can see why this place is ideal for social gatherings and celebrations.
Boasting fresh, seasonal and local ingredients, the menu is a reflection of the down home comfort you get while visiting Virginia farms. With a kitchen that is truly open, guests have the opportunity to nibble and peak over the counter to see what techniques and ingredients should be used for their next meal. Owners, Hue-Chan Karels and John Karels, recruited Executive Chef & Wine Director, Kenneth C. Hughes to lead the kitchen bringing his skills from L’Auberge du Soleil in Rutherford, Napa Velley and over 25 years of classic French style cooking.
The restaurant hosts everything from New Employee Welcome Receptions to Bachlorette Cooking Parties, with themes ranging from Roasting 101 to Aphrodisiacs. A location that’s ideal (with FREE parking…unreal in this area), with over 30 “how to” courses, Open Kitchen should be your next etiquette destination. You never know, understanding the difference between your Chard’s (Chardonnay) and Cab’s (Cabernet) could mean your next business deal.