Sometimes reservations can be difficult to come by. Reservations can be even more difficult to come by when a native Atlantan chef opens a new restaurant. Reservations are even still more difficult to come by when said new restaurant is owned by a few of the neighborhood families. Kitchen Six is currently one of those reservations.
Kitchen Six officially opened its doors for service a little over a month ago on December 27th 2016, and has been bustling ever since. The new Oak Grove neighborhood establishment is a collaborative effort between the owners of neighborhood favorite Oak Grove Market, Executive Chef Jason Jimenez (formerly of Canoe, Local Three, Muss & Turners; and currently of Homespun Catering), and neighborhood investors.
I attempted to make a reservation for an early dinner on a Tuesday night and the earliest time available was 8:30pm – Kitchen Six opens at 5:00pm. Not to be deterred, we went to the restaurant anyways and were able to grab some seats at the bar for dinner. Later in the week, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to go back to Kitchen Six, this time with a reservation and more people.
At first glance, the menu for Kitchen Six may look small and limiting, and while this was done intentionally in order to keep dishes seasonal and fresh, there is still something for everyone. In fact, the menu is so fluid that in the few days between my visits to the restaurant, there were at least three new items on the menu. Metathesiophobes have no fear though, because there will always be a few menu mainstays, like the off menu burger special.
The Burger Special is made with two thin grass-fed beef patties, sharp white cheddar, bacon jam, shredded lettuce, and house mayo on an H&F bun and is served with house fries and truffle mayo. The taste of the bacon jam really comes through in the burger, but is not overpowering. The burger is served with medium cut fries that are seasoned well and fried to perfection – crisp and not greasy – with a tangy and garlicky truffle mayo for dipping. The Kitchen Six Fries are also offered as starter with a trio of dipping sauces (truffle mayo, poblano cream, and chipotle mayo). Both nights, the fries and truffle mayo were what I found myself going back for over and over throughout the meal, I highly recommend them.
The other standout of the meal was not anything that I ate, but rather something I drank. The Old Fashioned at Kitchen Six is something special. It sweeter and mellower than the Old Fashioned’s that I’m used to, which made it dangerously easy to drink. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
While the fries and the Old Fashioned were the consensus favorites, everything that was ordered was delicious and provided its own contender for standout of the meal. The Candied Garlic Chicken was juicy with a thin, crispy skin and came with savory sweet potatoes that were prepared both mashed and charred. The only thing I didn’t like about the savory sweet potatoes was that they happened to be on someone else’s plate : ( . The Grilled GA Ribeye is exactly what you envision when you order a ribeye; pink with a phenomenal earthy crust. Their Hush Puppies have a great texture between light and dense, and are a fresh and herbal take on the traditional southern side. The Grilled Pork Tenderloin was cooked through perfectly without drying out and becoming tough to chew (much easier said than done). You really can not go wrong with this menu. Anything and everything you order is bound to come with something outstanding on the plate.
Outside of the plate, the restaurant space is well thought out and put together. The smallish dining room seats about 60 without feeling like your on top of the table next to you. It is a comfortable and intimate dining space that aesthetically fits the “casual, fine dining” moniker exceptionally well. On any given night, it is not difficult to imagine a couple on their first date dining next to a table of old high school friends, next to another couple celebrating an anniversary, next to a family from the surrounding neighborhood.
The best compliment that I can give Kitchen Six is that it fits the neighborhood well. Kitchen Six nicely rounds out the Oak Grove restaurant options without stepping on the toes of the restaurants that came before it. I expect Kitchen Six to thrive and become a neighborhood mainstay for many, many years.