We recently had the good fortune of a memorable meal with friends at Kinship, the latest restaurant by visionary Chef Eric Ziebold in Washington, DC. Kinship is what I would call a “concept” restaurant which has a menu inspired by the single concept of Kinship.
“Kinship: A feeling of being close or connected to other people.” -Eric Ziebold and Ceila Laurant
Ziebold and Laurant define kinship with culinary items placed in one of four categories on the menu: Craft, History, Ingredients, and Indulgence. The organization of the menu around these four terms is as delightful for the diner as it is appealing to the academic social scientist in me.
Each category includes 2-3 appetizers, main courses and dessert options from which diners can pick and choose. My dinner selection centered on crafty indulgence with a focus on ingredients for dessert.
Highlights included morels served in a light mushroom sauce with poached egg and porcini as well as a splendid foie gras prepared to perfection with a sweet apple jam base (indulgence). As a main I opted for the duck confit (craft) which did not disappoint with its well-perfected texture–one of the best I’ve had. The homemade bread and butter provided to the table also adds a nice touch.
As a dessert our table opted for the salted caramel peanut bar–peanut, chocolate ganache and salted caramel with a scoop of bourbon ice cream–what more could one ask for–though dessert are on the smaller side compared to the typical DC restaurant and I would not recommend sharing.
Other notes about the restaurant-the wine menu is extensive and they serve a variety of wonderful fruity reds with a large selection of Cabs and Pinots, which accompany most of the meal items well. They also have a well-rinsed slection of whites. This wine menu is among my favorite in DC, with Blue Duck Tavern being my absolute favorite. I also like that the Kinship menu provided the option of half bottles. I do not know if there is a sommelier on staff and it would have been nicer if one had stopped by.
The waitstaff were professional but still appear to be getting their act together. A better trained and more well spoken set of waitstaff could really elevate this restaurant placing it among they top DC dining destinations.
The ambiance is perfect mix of modernity integrated with concepts from the slow food movement–a minimalist heaven with a touch of home-like comforts, especially the set up at the bar. I felt like I was sitting inside of a Kinfolk magazine, a modern hipster’s delight.
Kinship Rating (5 point scale)