Janet Wilson: The Kitchen At Union Square Is Worth Several Visits

Thursday, February 6, 2014 - by Janet Wilson

A voice from the past! Wayne and I enjoyed this restaurant so much, I wanted to tell everyone about the great food!  The Kitchen at Union Square is part of the Culinary Institute of Virginia College.  We were told by our server that the students are working on their internships.  The Kitchen is located in the Tallan Building – the old Cellar, at 2 Union Square.

There were many intriguing and creative dishes on the menu, but being the middle of the day, neither of us wanted anything really heavy.  Of course, they offered several soups and sandwiches, but I wanted something different.

I knew I wanted to try the Union Oysters.  They were beautiful atop wilted spinach, Nueske’s Bacon and Parmesan ($8).  You get three oysters on a long plate.  Presentation here is beautiful.  To accompany the oysters, I ordered Parmesan Truffle Fries ($7).  When they were placed in the center of the table, the aroma was outstanding.  I loved the crispness of the fries and the taste, which was not overwhelming.

Wayne ordered the Salmon and Brie Salad featuring field greens, dried cranberries, roasted bell pepper, vanilla poached pears and candied nuts with a Lavender vinaigrette ($14).  The salmon was perfectly cooked.  I hate going to a restaurant where they never ask the degree of doneness you want your salmon and they bring it to you WAY overdone.  Some places even give you a “look” if you say you want it “medium rare”.  This time they asked, and it was a perfect medium rare and Wayne said it was delicious.

We enjoyed The Kitchen so much, we went back several weeks later for a second visit.  It was difficult to pass on those oysters, but I really wanted to try something new.  Wayne felt the same about the salmon.

I started with potato leek soup, and for my entrée ordered the braised short ribs (served with blini, carrots and coke bouillion), $13.  The blini is a very thin potato pancake placed on the plate with the ribs topping it and the carrots atop the ribs.  I wish I knew how they got this so tender.  I took half of it home and all I could think about was when could I eat those leftovers – I kept thinking about that wonderful taste and tenderness with the bouillion poured over it.

Wayne ordered the hanging tender with fries, $14.  He said the steak was just as tender as my ribs.  The fries were perfect – crisp on the outside, moist and soft on the inside.  It is served with a garlic mayo, catsup and a dipping sauce.

During lunch the most expensive item on the menu is $14, so the prices are reasonable.  The house soup, served daily, is Roasted Butternut Squash, and there is always a soup of the moment and a Sustainable Fish of the Moment”.   Several sandwiches and burgers are offered, including a BGLT – the G is for a fried green tomato rather than the standard tomato slice.

For dinner the prices are a bit more, but the menu also changes.  In place of the hangar tender, you have a hangar steak with brown butter whipped potatoes, roasted shallots and hangar sauce ($19).  Other items on the dinner menu include tuna, pork chop, and chicken. 

We really like The Kitchen at Union Square and hope they are there for a long time.  It would be great if we would support this teaching college and not only help these chefs get trained for their future, but have a great restaurant for our city’s future.  While there, you would never guess it is a teaching restaurant.  You feel as though you are in a fine dining establishment.  It’s definitely worth a visit.

Service is excellent and the servers we have had on our visits have been very knowledgeable regarding the menu.  Hours are Monday through Thursday from 11:00 AM until 9:00 PM (bar closes at 10:00 PM), Friday and Saturday, 11:00 AM until 10:00 PM (bar closes at 11:00 PM) and Sunday Brunch from 10:00 AM until 3:00 PM.  I think brunch may be our next foray!

Check them out!   Visit us a ChattanoogaDineOut.com

Janet Wilson

cdojanet@epbfi.com


Wendy's On Dayton Boulevard Opens

Wendy's at 1868 Dayton Blvd. celebrated its Grand Opening on Friday and Saturday at noon. The Wendy's store has a new design.   The store will be open from 10:30 a.m.-1 a.m. every day.   (click for more)

Chattanooga-Based Five Star Food Service Opens 400th Micro-Market

Eight months ago Chattanooga-based Five Star Food Service became one of the nation’s first independent vending operators to surpass the 300 micro-market threshold.   Last week Five Star celebrated the opening of its 400th micro-market at a Jostens production facility in Clarksville. The Jostens installation marks the 133 rd  micro-market Five Star has opened this fiscal ... (click for more)

Robber Who Was Shot At Rossville Boulevard Car Lot Dies; No Charges To Be Filed

Police said a person who was shot during a robbery attempt at a car lot at 4314 Rossville Blvd. around 1:50 p.m. on Thursday has died. Police said the shooting has been ruled a "justifiable homicide" and no charges will be brought against 27-year-old Alan Miller. The shooting in which the robbery victim shot the suspect was at Miller Auto Sales. (click for more)

Man Charged In Shooting On Sixth Avenue Had Been Shot Himself Last Week; Police Say Incident "Part Of Gang War"

A man charged with attempted first-degree murder on Sixth Avenue Court on Thursday afternoon was shot himself earlier this month. O'Shae Kadaris Smith, 20, of 2114 E. 12th St., is also charged with reckless endangerment, aggravated assault and possessing a firearm during the commission of a crime. He was one of two people shot on Rawlings Street on March 16. Kendre Allen, ... (click for more)

Finley Stadium Needs To Grow Up - And Response

RE:  Finley Stadium Financial Picture Rosy; Beer And Alcohol Sales Approved; AstroTurf Almost Ready and City, County Pitching In $250,000 Each For New Finley Stadium AstroTurf I read a story here five days ago about a rosy future for Finley stadium. It lead me to believe that the stadium was making money and even improvements with donations.  Then we get a short ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Mom’s Parting Instructions

My mother, Helen Exum, went to be with the Lord in late August of last year and, in the way folks do, I was going through some of her files last week when I ran across an envelope with my name on it. Inside was a story and written in her hand were the words, “This is a wonderful story for you to tell!” Not being one to disobey my mother and not about to waylay the wishes of the ... (click for more)