Dining Spotlight of Roseville: Range Kitchen and Tap; Crafted Locally with Love
Range Kitchen and Tap, 1420 East Roseville Parkway, Suite 160, Roseville, 916-865-4317, rangeroseville.com
It starts with a concept. For Range Kitchen and Tap owner Kevin Kokoszka, that principle is scratch-made fare served in welcoming, unpretentious environs. The good news is it works on all accounts—from the 16-seat, open kitchen counter lighted by Edison bulbs hanging from industrial pulley fixtures to the new American house-made fare prepared by Chef Kevin Bowes.
The buzzwords flying around these days like “locally sourced” and “farm to fork” (among the many we’ve all heard regardless of their authenticity) are put into practice and policy by the two Kevins. “We converted our freezer into a [walk-in] cooler because we don’t use frozen foods,” says Kokoszka.
I began with the grilled Delta asparagus salad—not only because I love the vertical vegetable but because of the restaurants preparation. All too often you see asparagus tempura fried, smothered in a sweet-piquant sauce, or steamed plain, but the chef’s playful presentation at Range—incorporating yolk sauce, Parmesan aioli, and tomato coulis—brought all my best friends to the party for a unique, pleasing starter.
I was also intrigued by the “beet” carpaccio—possibly a typo meaning “beef,” I surmised. Fortunately, this was no misstep. The earthiness from the thinly sliced, roasted red and yellow beets contrasted nicely with tangy feta, crème fraîche, and a crisp Meyer lemon vinaigrette. This was a real showpiece—both in flavor and appearance—with everything except the feta produced in-house.
Until now, I haven’t stressed the extraordinary lengths Chef Bowes and his staff go to in order to prepare some of the best food in the area. The process for prepping their Southern fried chicken is just short of the medical journal definition of OCD. First, it’s brined for 24 hours and cooked in sous-vide for two hours, then chilled and marinated in buttermilk overnight, and finally placed in a straightforward, Southern-style coating and deep-fried. The result is a competition-worthy marvel of engineering—all of the things you wish for in fried chicken but rarely get. Adjective alert: super crispy, moist, juicy, and packed with flavor that’ll make Colonel Sanders cry foul…or fowl. Served with sautéed greens and garlic mashed potatoes, it’s Southern comfort on a plate.
And if you have an ounce of space in the gastrointestinal region, the espresso crème brûlée is an absolute must!
Hours: 11 a.m.-10 p.m. (Monday-Friday); 3-10 p.m. (Saturday)
Try This: Bison Meatball Sliders, Boar Bacon Artichoke Dip, Beet Carpaccio, Grilled Delta Asparagus Salad, Southern Fried Chicken, The Broken Link Pizza, Range Burger, Mom’s Meatloaf, Espresso Crème Brûlée
Drinks: Full bar; beer, wine, and cocktails
Heads-Up: Happy Hour (Monday-Friday from 2-6 p.m.) includes $1 off beers, $6 wines, $3 off pizzas, and $5 BBQ fries; private dining room for parties of seven or more; kids’ menu; vegan and vegetarian options; gluten-free pizza crust available ($3); “The Range” pizza changes weekly based on the chef’s farmers’ market finds
by Lorn Randall
photos by DANTE FONTANA