SIX TEST KITCHEN

Six Test Kitchen is Arroyo Grande’s flash-in-the-pan new eating establishment heavy on preparation and light on substance.  The basis of this resty is not new–single-seating per night, pricy prix fixe accomodations, an allegedly whiz-bang young gun with
 an alleged stellar resume who is–by reduction–basically a local kid cooking in his parent’s–BEAUTIFUL WALL-TO-WALL STAINLESS STEEL–garage.  Everything is ridiculously well-prepared.  Every sauce, every topping, every tiny bite has a myriad of steps to produce, from fresh garden-produced vegetables to sauces with a plethora of steps.  You are promised a dozen or more ‘courses’, all of which are one or two bites.  Think of it as a two-hour amuse-bouche, all beautifully prepared and presented.  In no particular order:

Quite an experience throughout. From the dried tapioca Klingon Bird Of Prey on a rock to the wrapped fish to the mousse, and all the tiny hi-intensity bites in-between, all the way through the de rigueur nitro desserts.  If you want some young punk to blow smoke up your ass all night, this is your deal.  If you bring wine, they take charge of the pouring and let me key you in on the pacing:  I sat through 4 courses with a Champagne, four courses with a Riesling, three courses with a Chardonnay, the mag of Grenache (one of SEVEN REDS BROUGHT) was opened IMMEDIATELY before the smoked pork course and the dessert wine opened directly afterwards for the three dessert courses (oooooo dessert wine with dessert: how fresh is that).  The wines were out of reach and the chef was in control of the pouring. Quite possibly one of the most ridiculous wine-dining situations I have ever been placed into.
Regular readers of my blog know I never talk about two things: Price and Portion size.  And I am certainy not going to start now.  This restaurant is probably worth every penny of the slightly high chef’s table pricing.  If you have $260 dollars to burn and 4 friends to impress and two hours to listen to a Michelin-obsessed chef talk about every starred restaurant he USED to work for while your legs dangle from bar stools in a garage on a residential street, this is your dealio.  If you want beautiful, Instagram-worthy plates and whatever they decide to pour you to go with it, this is your place.  It is a satisfying amount of food, even if it comes in tiny increments.  Everything is gorgeous and hours and hours of thought and preparation obviously go into each tiny dollop of sauce on each tiny dollop of side-dish on each tiny dollop of main event.  Nothing is simple.  These are CRAZY-complicated dishes and worth every penny.  Did I like it? Yes.  Was I disappointed? No: it was EXACTLY what I expected.  Will I recommend it?  To the right demographic, Yes. Will I go back? No.
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