As much as I love food, I love connecting with people over food even more. Recently, the #cbusfoodbloggers group took part in an amazing Culinary Experience at The Kitchen, located in downtown Columbus, Ohio, in the German Village.
The last part of that statement gets to me. We were in the German Village, which is really close to the Italian Village. And about a million other really cool places in Columbus that I am dying to explore. It’s fair to say that this new environment is pretty overwhelming. Not that Phoenix doesn’t have a great food scene, because it does, but things are different here. Maybe it is the changing seasons, or maybe it is the eclectic mix of people all mashed up in one place. Either way, Columbus is a pretty fantastic place for new experiences.
Like the amazing brunch the #cbusfoodbloggers group had at The Kitchen. According to their Facebook page, ‘The Kitchen hosts events that use communal cooking and food as the focal point of a creative, immersive dining experience.’
Culinary Experience at The Kitchen
Imagine walking into a bright, funky little space with clean lines, an open kitchen, and meeting a staff with even more open minds. That is pretty much what it was. To be honest, I did not read up on our host before the event. I really like to walk in unbiased, ready to enjoy my over viewpoint on an establishment.
Before our brunch, I thought we were going to have a kitchen tour, maybe help out with a few recipes, and mostly rave about the food. Now don’t get me wrong, The Kitchen is doing everything right when it comes to the food. Ingredients are seasonal, and locally sourced, and the staff definitely knows their way around knife. But it is the actual premise of this place that blew me away.
You see folks, this isn’t a sit down and order dinner kind of place. This is truly a hands-on culinary experience. Image getting a group of your favorite people under one roof and actually cooking together, without having to worry about creating a menu, shopping for ingredients, or cleaning up! I really don’t feel like I am doing this place justice.
We walked in, and right off the bat were presented with delectable Nutella French Toast Bites and mimosas. From there co-owner Anne told us a little about the history of the building, and how the restaurant was started. A full write up is on cbusfoodbloggers.com. For now, I just wanted to share a little about my personal experience.
From there we went over the menu, which consisted of:
- Orange, Apple, and Fennel Salad
- Crab Avocado Toasts
- Mushroom, Leek, and Fontina Frittata
- Nutmeg and Black Pepper Popovers
- Maple Glazed Bacon
Then we figured out who was going to be making what. I personally helped to make the Crab Avocado Toasts, and the popovers. Which to be honest didn’t pop the way they should have. That is one thing I love about this place, it doesn’t matter if you are a newbie in the kitchen, or are running your own food gig, you WILL learn something. Anne gave me a few tips for the next time I try to master the art of popovers.
The staff walked us through every step of preparing, and cooking our various brunch dishes, but we did the actual labor. It was pretty amazing to bond with this new group of friends over our shared love of food, photography, and social media. Speaking of photography. be sure to checkout the gallery of pictures from our culinary experience at the bottom of this post.
Once our meal was ready, we sat down family style to share food and conversation, while the staff quietly cleaned up our mess. I have to hand it to them, they are the most gracious of hosts. Close enough to answer questions, but discrete enough that we enjoyed our meal as if we were in someone’s home.
Next up, I plan to get Paul down there with me. He shies away from the kitchen, in part because I have spoiled him, but also because he is a little intimidated. One evening in The Kitchen and I think he’ll be more willing to pitch in, rather than roll his eyes, the next time I prod him for help with dinner.
Keep scrolling for more pictures, and click the titles for the recipes!
The Kitchen Recipes
Unfortunately I didn’t get any pictures of our didn’t-quite-pop-enough popovers, but they flavors were amazing!
We brought the biscotti home, and Paul devoured it before I could get any shots of it. Suffice to say, he loved it.
And the recipe for the bacon is pretty simple. Cook bacon, brush with quality maple syrup, and don’t burn it.
Maple Glazed Bacon
- 1 pound thick-cut bacon
- 1/4 cup quality maple syrup
- Line an extra large baking sheet will foil. Place a baking rack on tray. Evenly place bacon on baking rack. Place on the center rack in the oven. Turn oven on to 400 degrees. Bake 15 minutes. Check crispiness of bacon. Continue to bake in 5 minute intervals, checking frequently until bacon reaches desired doneness. Remove bacon from oven, brush lightly with maple syrup. Return to oven for 3-5 minutes until slightly bubbly and caramelized. Remove immediately from oven, allow to cool slightly before serving.