Kitchen Table Squared
Baked Alaska Latte
Cookie Monster Milkshake – Vanilla Soft Serve, Chocolate Sauce, Whipped Cream, Hershey’s Chocolate, Housemade Chocolate Chip Cookie
Candied Orange Brioche French Toast – White Chocolate Sauce, Powdered Sugar, Whipped Cream, Candied Orange Peel
Duck Hash – Two Poached Eggs, Duck Pastrami, Sweet Potatoes, Caramelized Onions, Buttermilk Biscuit
Tiramisu in a Jar
Skillet Apple Pie
Officially opened on 12/18/17 for Breakfast and Lunch, Dinner service set to launch the day after Christmas, it was just five days after Friends & Family that a seat was taken at Kitchen Table Squared at The Gramercy, Chef Javier Chavez out greeting guests on arrival but soon returning to a kitchen where his presence thus far appears crucial as wait times for even simple plates extend past half an hour.
Intended as a three-meal expansion of the Henderson breakfast and brunch flagship, approximately 90% of the current daytime menu identical but the Restaurant not yet “doing” Waffles per the server, it was as mid-volume pop-tunes played overhead that the decision was made to begin with a Baked Alaska Latte, the bruleed cloud of Meringue on top drizzled with Fruit Syrup and visually quite impressive while the blend of Coffee and Cream was smooth and silky, though only luke-warm as presented.
Classy enough to serve as a good Date-spot at night and comfortable in the daylight, the varied textures and polished woods creating a feel akin to Kitchen Table number one despite Squared’s significantly larger footprint, it was as the Latte was delivered that an order was placed for two of the menu’s new plates, the aforementioned Waffle replaced by French Toast at the recommendation of a pleasant young female server who did an excellent job touching tables and apologizing for delays to multiple patrons.
Perhaps 1/6 full at noon, the crowd a mix of young families and retirees with no obvious business sector presence yet, it was clearly in an attempt to pacify lengthy waits that items such as Muffins and Shakes were offered from the Barista station approximately twenty minutes after the order was placed, a “Cookie Monster” Milkshake featuring housemade Chocolate Chip Cookie both on-top and mixed with Soft Serve once again showing great flavor and smooth texture without being too over-the-top.
Spending some of the delay exploring, the Private Dining Room and back-right alcove pleasantly secluded while the area immediately ahead of the doors offers a much better vantage for people watching, it was finally forty-five minutes after sitting down that the all-new Candied Orange French Toast arrived, the Whipped Cream melted and soaking into subtly Citrus Brioche that certainly needs no Syrup.
Quickly following sweet with savory, a careless male that Javier had scolded earlier for delivering plates to the wrong table plopping down a board and sending the Biscuit skittering, it was after he bare-handed it back onto the plate that two poached Eggs were popped amidst an excellent Duck Hash, the ‘Pastrami’ bold and rich while the crispy Sweet Potatoes blended nicely with sautéed Onions.
Bringing over a former Andiron Pastry Chef for Desserts, the Monkey Bread and several Muffins from Henderson now made across town, it was with three new items that lunch came to a finish, the Tiramisu in a jar fairly forgettable as the Ladyfingers were dry while the Apple Pie could have used a bit more time in the oven to warm it at the center, though the Carrot Cake was pretty much perfect with tangy Cream Cheese frosting and a complex spice profile.
THREE STARS: At this point still not up to speed, the lengthy delay in opening now appearing to be compromised by a last-minute sprint to the finish without accounting for staff training or expediting for a much larger space, Kitchen Table Squared nonetheless shows potential to be quite good, though for now fans may want to stick with the original, particularly if time is a concern.
RECOMMENDED: Duck Hash, Carrot Cake.
AVOID: Tiramisu in a Jar, and Waffles I guess…
TIP: Officially located at 9205 West Russell Road and soon to be open 8am until 9pm plus an extra hour on Friday and Saturday.
WHAT THE STARS MEAN: 5 World Class, 4 Excellent, 3 Good, 2 Fair, 1 Poor.