central kitchen 2.0 – a letter from chef thomas mcnaughton

July 6, 2016

Dear Friends,

The old Central Kitchen will close its doors on July 9th 2016. The new Central Kitchen will open to the public on July 21st.

Doing a standard press release for this great evolution of our restaurant did not make sense to me. A letter to our community, friends and family did.

I love Central Kitchen right now. We have a busy space, outstanding food and I am so proud of what we put out every service. That said, the crazy momentum of a busy restaurant, open every day, makes it hard to implement changes, let alone the major overhaul we have been thinking about for some time now.

It has always been our goal to be an accessible, neighborhood restaurant along the 20th street corridor but to some we are still perceived as a higher end restaurant, and that has never felt right to me.

I want to make a clear statement of what Central kitchen will be.

The remodel starts with the kitchen redesign, which will allow for both stylistic changes in the food as well as a greatly increased efficiency, and I have to admit, a few new fun things to play with.

The beginning of the new menu is comprised of our love for all things raw, cured, fermented and smoked coming from our shared larder and Salumeria’s cure box. Next, we will have a section celebrating the amazing vegetables our farmers are growing. There will be an expanded pasta and bread program created in flour + water’s dough room just a block away. The end of the menu will focus on meats and fish prepared in our new wood burning hearth. Our menu will list all items as sharable and communal. The meats and fish coming from the hearth, as well as simple crudos and vegetables, will honor the amazing, local products from the Bay Area. We will offer more options for people to enjoy, both smaller plates and large format dishes.

The kitchen remodel will also allow us to greatly improve our ability to feed our two private dining rooms: The Upstairs and The Butcher Block. Since the opening of Central Kitchen, the private dining rooms have added 55 seats to the already existing restaurant.

I am thrilled to have the freedom to start from scratch with this new menu and focus ultimately on the things I crave and want to eat. Central Kitchen will be a welcoming gathering place that is more connected to the neighborhood than ever before.

Thank you for your continued support of not only me and Central Kitchen, but also for the Ne Timeas Restaurant Group family.

Hope to see you soon,

Thomas McNaughton
Chef/Partner

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