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

Thursday, February 06, 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


Alpha Beta ESA Plans 27th Annual Taster’s Luncheon

Alpha Beta ESA’s 27th annual Taster’s Luncheon to benefit the Walter E. Boehm Birth Defect Center takes place on Saturday, Sept. 20, at St. Stephen’s Catholic Church, 7111 Lee Highway. Organizers said, "This event not only provides delicious hors d’oeuvres, salads and desserts, but includes a fabulous fashion show with clothing by CATO, a $100 cash drawing, a Chinese auction ... (click for more)

The Egg & I Restaurant Opening In Chattanooga On Sept. 1

The Egg & I Restaurants announced the opening of its 105 th  restaurant on Monday, Sept. 1. The restaurant opens at 6 a.m., and is at 1825 Gunbarrel Road, a half mile Southwest of Hamilton Place Mall. On Sunday, the restaurant will donate 100% of all proceeds from its private, pre-opening training day to the Chattanooga Area Food Bank.The food bank’s mission is to lead ... (click for more)

16-Year-Old Shot Near Emma Wheeler Homes

A 16-year-old was shot near Emma Wheeler Homes on Sunday night. At approximately 7:40 p.m., Chattanooga Police received a call of a person shot from a local hospital. Officers spoke to the victim, a 16-year-old black male, who was transported to a local hospital in a personal vehicle. The victim’s injury is minor and non-life threatening. Investigators spoke to the victim ... (click for more)

Helen Burns Sharp Asks Recovery Of Legal Fees In Successful Black Creek TIF Lawsuit

Helen Burns Sharp, citizen activist who sued to try to stop a $9 million Black Creek Tax Increment Financing (TIF) and won, is seeking to have her legal expenses paid by the city and the developers. Ms. Sharp said in a court filing that her legal bills to attorney John Konvalinka are $74,427 thus far. Chancellor Frank Brown ruled in favor of Ms. Sharp, saying the Sunshine ... (click for more)

Decimating The Chattanooga Public Library

Corinne Hill claims that the library is just undergoing a normal weeding process for eliminating books.  She has bragged that she's responsible for the elimination of over 100,000 books - with more to go. "Normal" weeding is not rampant throwing away.  Yes, books go to the Friends for their sale - where they get $2 for a $75 book and thousands wind up being recycled ... (click for more)

The Many Lessons I Learned From Helen McDonald Exum

Helen McDonald Exum was my friend and mentor. As I think of her passing I can only imagine the celebration that is happening in heaven as the news of her arrival is being told. I am sure that there is a party that not only has she organized but that there is not a detail that has been left to chance. I am sure that it is the grandest of events, for you see, she has been planing ... (click for more)