Chef Jennifer Johnson and wife/business partner Serafina Palandech opened The Kitchen in Sebastopol, California, featuring a chicken nugget tasting room as an offshoot of the couple’s Hip Chick Farms. These are anything but your average, grade-school cafeteria, fast-food drive-thru, mystery-meat nuggets, though. The Kitchen’s main attraction, its Organic Chicken Fingers, come in three flavors — original, ketchup and maple — and are available for order by flavor or, for the true nugget enthusiast, as a flight of all three.
That’s right — sample these exquisite nuggets as you would a local craft brew or trio of fine wines. Johnson’s nuggets are designed to go un-dipped — the flavors are mixed dry into the breading, giving them plenty of flavor — though The Kitchen does offer house-made sauces for those who just can’t go without.
Along with the requisite farm-to-table salads and sides, the Kitchen’s menu also includes a variety of sandwiches, including the Fried Buttermilk Chicken Sandwich, with caramelized onions, pickles, lettuce, tomato and the restaurant’s secret sauce.
The Chicken Meatball Sub is also a favorite, with tomato sauce, mozzarella, pesto and parmesan cheese; and the Organic Turkey Burger, topped with sautéed onions, apples, jalapeños and aged cheddar cheese.
All of the Kitchen’s dishes are made with Sonoma County’s freshest ingredients, continuing a dedicating to fresh, local ingredients Chef Jennifer Johnson’s dedication to the finest seasonal, local ingredients from her time first as sous chef at Chez Panisse, and then nearly two decades as personal chef for billionaire philanthropists Ann and Gordon Getty, per The Washington Post.
The path to Johnson and Palandech’s game-changing nugget flight actually began years ago, when the duo started Hip Chick Farms’ “farm to freezer” chicken fingers, meatballs and more. According to the Hip Chick Farms website, the “chicken and turkey in all of our products is humanely certified, free range, natural and organic poultry that are raised without antibiotics or added hormones.” It’s also non-GMO and fed a “a high-quality, vegetable diet and grow naturally with plenty of room.”