Blue Table Kitchen, a new restaurant-and-then-some that opened in July, has a name that is meant to be taken literally. The interior can only host 20 guests at a time. The diners sit at two large blue tables. There’s service at only one time on Friday and Saturday nights.
But here’s the twist: Blue Table Kitchen takes the idea of private, intimate dining in America and flips it on its ethnocentric head by offering a fine-feasting experience served fixed-menu and dinner party-style, something more likely to be found in European countries than our own.
“There are times while it’s [nice] to have a choice and look at a big menu,” says Julia Postlewait, one of the co-owners of Blue Table Kitchen, “and it’s also nice to just sort of say, ‘I’m going to dinner tonight, and this is what they’re serving.’”
A quick study of the ever-morphing menu shows that this restaurant’s cuisine is eclectic.
“We have a Mediterranean kind of experience with lots of Asian influences as well,” says Postlewait, who also co-owns Rocket Bakery, Rocket Market and Bottles. “We’re always game to try anything, so we’re always experimenting.”
Last weekend’s menu included everything from miso-glazed beef in lettuce cups to scallops with chile-marinated oranges, and from Thai coconut chicken soup to apple sauce bundt cake. The menu moves diners organically from course to course and surprises along the way.
There’s more to the merriment here than just the tantalizing food served on weekends. Postlewait says that she and her business partners eschew the word “restaurant” because they hope to do more with the business than serving Friday and Saturday meals.
Blue Table has already functioned in private capacities for events such as rehearsal dinners and birthday parties. The owners anticipate hosting office parties around the holidays, and the business is also offering classes on Wednesdays.
The heart of the business appears to be a shared experience built around delicious dishes.
“I think [dinner here offers] a great opportunity to meet your neighbors … because it’s community seating,” says Postlewait. “It seems like we have so many ways to communicate that we forget how to communicate sometimes. You actually get to sit and talk with someone and not be texting or clicking on the computer.”
Blue Table Kitchen • 3319 N. Argonne Ste. B • Friday seating 5:45 pm, Saturday seating 6:45 pm • 473-9087