404-Kitchen-Cauliflower

The 404 Kitchen’s Cauliflower
spaghetti squash, puttanesca, grana padano

I’d been hearing great things for weeks. The 404 Kitchen opened back in October and it took me wayyyy too long to get there for a first visit. Finally, a couple of weeks ago, over glasses of wine at my own dining room table, my girlfriends and I booked our reservation. It would be a celebration of one friend’s birthday, and it needed to be special.

And special it was!

 

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The 404 Kitchen’s Burrata
Burgundy truffles, leeks, Benton’s ham

First, I love the vibe of the space. It’s small. Actually, tiny. It reminds me of some restaurants I’ve been to in NYC and Chicago. Definitely nothing like I’ve been to here in Nashville. Making it completely unique to any dining establishment I’ve ever been to before: it’s built around/within a recycled shipping container. Yes, one of those big metal containers that haul product across the ocean from China and other far away lands!

Pretty cool, IMO. To get an idea of what that looks like, check out this post from Southern Living with pics by Nashville photographer Ron Manville. As you can see, it’s probably best that you limit your dinner party to 4 when you go. It’s not the sort of spot you want to go for a big group celebration (unless of course, you rent out the entire space)! But for a romantic night out with your sweetie or cozy dinner with 3 friends, it’s perfect.

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Kennedy Farms Chicken Liver Pate
arugula, asian pears, pecan, benne wafer

Okay, now the food. We ate so soooo much, and all was good, but today I’m going to focus only on our favorites. First, the burrata. This is one of the dishes that you simply need to order when you visit. So fantastic.

Now, hang on to your seats, because I’m about to declare chicken liver pate the best dish I’ve eaten in a restaurant so far in 2014. I know, I know, we’re less than 4 weeks into the year, but never mind that. I have a feeling it will hold that ranking for quite some time. This dish absolutely blew us away! In fact, I could definitely see myself dropping by, bellying  up to the bar, ordering some cocktails, eating only this and leaving there a very happy girl.

I’ll be completely honest, when this plate arrived at the table, I didn’t even take a photo because I wasn’t expecting to like it all that much. You see, I’m not a huge fan of pate. Thus, the picture you get is after we’ve started to destroy it. A couple of minutes after I snapped this, the plate was empty. Not a spec left.

Chicken. Liver. Pate. Never in a million years would I have believed I’d be dreaming of a liver pate (?!?!?), but I am!

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We had so many appetizers to start that we were really pretty full before even getting around to the entrees. Luckily, we’d made the smart decision early on to only order 3 to split between 4 of us. Perfect, because the portion sizes are pretty substantial. There is no way that after eating multiple small plates we could have each tried to tackle our own large plate.

I ordered the beef (tri tip?) on risotto. I really wish I’d made notes that night or taken a pic of the menu so I’d be able to give you a better description than that, but alas, I didn’t. And since the menu is ever changing, it’s likely that this exact dish won’t be there when you go anyway.

What I can tell you is this: I’m a risotto lover. But, that also makes me a very picky risotto eater. I don’t always think it’s done well, but this dish was perfection. Definitely my favorite entree of the night, though the Sheepshead (fish for those that aren’t familiar) served on Hoppin’ John with collards and ham broth, was a very close second.

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 The trifle at 404 Kitchen

We ended the evening with a couple of desserts, this trifle being our favorite. Again, can’t tell you much more than that, as I didn’t write anything down (plus I’d had 3 cocktails by the time we got to this so my notes probably would have been chicken scratch anyway). Just don’t skip dessert. Trust me.

The 404 Kitchen

404 12th Ave
Nashville, TN 37203
(615) 251-1404

Hours:
Tue-Thu 5 – 10 pm
Fri-Sat 5 – 11 pm

5 Responses to “The 404 Kitchen”

  1. 1

    Vivek Surti — January 22, 2014 @ 11:11 am

    Great write up, Beth! The 404 Kitchen is crushing it right now. Matt and his team are putting out some of the best food I’ve ever had, and not just for Nashville!

  2. 2

    Jennifer (ricejenc) — January 24, 2014 @ 10:04 am

    I am sooo excited to go there for my birthday. Fingers crossed he is still adding truffles to the burrata in a couple of weeks. Thanks for the great pics & info. Hope to see you soon!

  3. 3

    Mix your drink — January 26, 2014 @ 3:45 am

    Wow, that looks like amazing food…

  4. 4

    Lesley Eats — January 30, 2014 @ 4:44 pm

    I really hope I can make it over there while the burrata is still on the menu!

  5. 5

    Kristin @ Camels & Chocolate — February 11, 2014 @ 12:53 pm

    I just remembered how much I love Matt’s cooking and how I need to go back to 404, stat.

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