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Review

Andrew Thomas Lee

Kimball House

$$$$
Written by
Andrew Thomas Lee

When you think about time travel, there are always a few elements that don’t get brought up, like how most dinosaurs would try to eat you, or if you contracted the bubonic plague on a trip to the Middle Ages, there would be no CVS for you to buy antibiotics. For a risk-free time travel experience where the only thing you’ll have to worry about is what cocktail to order, just go to Kimball House.

Located inside an old train station, Kimball House takes you back to the 1920s and 30s, first through the steak, caviar, and oyster-focused menu, and also through the space itself, which is inspired by an old hotel. Between the antique furniture, crystal glassware that looks straight out of the Gatsby universe, and the old-timey ceiling fans running on an ancient conveyor belt, this place feels like it’s from a different time entirely and we really like it.

Andrew Thomas Lee

In terms of food, the first thing you’ll want to order at Kimball House is a lot of oysters. There’s a wide variety of them, and they’re always great. You’ll especially want to eat them during the weeknight Happy Hour, when all of those oysters are discounted. If you’re staying for a full dinner, expect an appropriately old school menu of dishes like shrimp cocktail, caviar, and a selection of “Steak Dinners.”

While Kimball House is certainly worth coming to just for the food, it’s also a great spot to start a night out with a few drinks. They serve some of the best cocktails in the city, with a rotating menu that includes everything from a classic French 75 to some great originals.

Whether you want to sit down for a full meal, or just stop by for a few cocktails and oysters, Kimball House is a great option for either. And while the food is probably better than whatever was actually being served during the era that inspired this place, that’s one inaccuracy that we’re more than fine with

Food Rundown

Hawaiian Roll

When we asked the waiter if we should order one of these per person or just share, she simply asked, “How much do you love yourself?” Turns out, we love ourselves a lot, especially when peach preserves are involved.

Duck Liver Paté

This dish comes comes with bread, a small salad with pickled mustard seeds, blueberries, and a jar of pate that we estimate could serve a table of seven. So, if you’re with a few other people who like pate, or if you’re just really into it yourself, this is a great appetizer.

Bar Steak

This steak comes with a potato pave, which is an old school way of preparing potatoes so that the end result is super rich. This dish could use a side salad, though, just to offset some of the butter.

Duck Breast

In case you hadn’t already had enough duck with the pate, we recommend the duck breast. It comes with Carolina gold dirty rice, duck confit, and collards, all in a delicious jus.

Glazed Bok Choy

This pretty plate of vegetables includes bok choy, mushrooms, kohlrabi, onion, dollops of labneh, pistachio, and benne seed. At the very least, it’ll make you think you’re eating a balanced meal here.

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