King serves straightforward food with influences from France and Italy. We needed some Google assistance on the menu, admittedly. And we get out quite a bit, so that was surprising. But everything from the carta di musica to the bicerin was amazing. Read on to discover the joy of those two items. And I’m not sure when they might be available again, as the menu changes daily. The chefs are two women from London, Clare de Boer and Jess Shadbolt, who both worked at the River Cafe.
The dining room is also straightforward. Simple, clean and cozy, King has open kitchen with all of the staff in view. We had the table by the kitchen and we were a part of the goings-on, watching the dishes go out to the dining room. The walls are appropriately washed with a butter-colored paint. We had lots of butter. On everything. And it was sublime. And yes, that included the carta di musica, the ravioli, porchetta and even the bicerin.
To start, my dad and Steve both went for the Carta di musica. Google reveals it is a name derived from the flour used to make this crisp cracker bread. It is rolled so thin you can read sheet music through it. The flour is called King Arthur and has Sardinian roots. Chef slathered it with bottarga butter, which Google reveals to be the Italian name for a delicacy of salted, cured fish roe often featured in Mediterranean cuisine. Heaven. Could have had a couple more plates of it easily!
I had the desire for greens. After our smorgasbord of sorts at Aquavit the night prior, I felt the need for vegetables. What better to have than a Salata with Snow Peas, Mint, Baby Gem lettuce and ricotta on a freezing cold spring afternoon? At first it was missing flavor, but after a good mixing, I really enjoyed the ricotta dressing with this gorgeous mix of spring greens.
Again, my Dad and Steve aligned on the hand-cut ricotta ravioli with sage, butter and Parmesan for their mains. So rich and delicious, but I was into a larger portion and did not regret my choice of porchetta sandwich. Even the thick, crusty bread of my sandwich was grilled in butter. I enjoyed the greens with the pork and may have liked it better open-faced, but the guys were happy to split my 2nd piece of bread to soak up the butter sage sauce on their plates.
Next up, dessert. At this point we’d eaten a 6 course meal the night before, so there was no stopping us on going soup to nuts for this meal either. We chose the bicerin and lemon polenta cake. We didn’t take the time to google bicerin or we’d have ordered 3, which we did immediately upon tasting. Again, Google to the rescue. It is a traditional hot drink native to Turin, Italy made of espresso, hot chocolate and heavy cream served layered in a small round glass. One of them we did not mix and there was a distinct butter flavor left in the bottom, so we made sure to combine the layers of the follow up bicerins. We shared a slice of the cake, which we saw sitting on the service bar and had to have. A beautiful and simple cake. With more heavy cream.
King has only been open for lunch service for two weeks. But we are thinking this will become a regular destination. I’ve been unable to snag a table on Seated for prime-time weekend dinner since they’ve been open, but lucked out on this one. And it was very quiet, not full in the dining room at all. We are now curious what the next menu might bring. Look for more reviews!