As I’ve mentioned numerous times, I don’t think it’s fair – either to Utah Bites readers or to restaurateurs – to write complete “reviews” based on media events, “soft” restaurant openings, or “friends & family” dinners where guests are comped their meals and treated to especially attentive service. Those dining situations are rarely comparable to what the general public can expect from a restaurant visit.
However, I do like to provide “first looks” or “sneak peeks” into new restaurants for my readers, particularly if I think the restaurant in question has a promising future. And I will say this: based on an invitation-only media preview of the food and service at Park City’s new Hearth and Hill, I have very little doubt that this place is going to be a huge hit with Park City Locals and visitors, alike. There is a lot to like.
Hearth and Hill – located in the Redstone section of Kimball Junction – is an eye-popping eatery. It’s massive – some 5200 square feet in size, and absolutely beautiful, complete with a full bar (and the most comfortable bar stools ever), exhibition kitchen and plenty of space to maneuver. The decor from the floors to the high ceilings is drop dead gorgeous. The online social media photos I’ve seen of the place just don’t do it justice.
Hearth and Hill is the brainchild of owner Brooks Kirchheimer – “a lifelong dream,” he says. After earning a degree in Restaurant and Hotel Management, Kirchheimer worked at high-end establishments like Montage Beverly Hills and Montage Deer Valley, as well as Sundance’s Zoom restaurant and Peter Merriman’s namesake restaurant in Maui.
In 2017 Brooks and his wife Catherine returned to Park City with their dog, Boone, with the goal of starting their own restaurant. The result, with assistance from his father and co-owner David Kirchheimer, is Hearth and Hill.
As I said, I’ll save a full-on critical review of the restaurant and more in-depth information about the philosophy behind it for another time. But, I have to admit, I was very impressed by the food and service during the media event I attended. And frankly, I was skeptical going in. Looking at the menu online, if I was being kind I’d call it “eclectic.” If I wasn’t inclined to be kind, I’d have called it “confused.” Hearth and Hill cuisine runs the gamut from Mexican-style carne asada and Asian potstickers, to a Cuban sandwich, Korean fried chicken, trout with gnocchi, burgers, and hamachi crudo. It’s quite a smorgasbord of culinary styles and cuisines.
But, chef Jordan Harvey and owner David Kirchheimer explained that the diversity of flavors is intentional. They wanted to create a family-friendly culinary atmosphere in which one person at the table can enjoy a veggie burger while another might prefer filet mignon with oxtail gravy. There is, literally, something for everybody at Hearth and Hill. And that includes kids, with thoughtful children’s menu items like grilled Arctic char, vegetable noodle soup, chips with guacamole, string cheese snacks and more. To my surprise, the mashup of cuisines at Hearth and Hill somehow just works.
So, rather than a critique of individual dishes – all of which I very much enjoyed – here is a photo excursion and highlights of Hearth and Hill’s eclectic menu.
Hamachi crudo with chile, lime, scallion, white soy, toasted sushi rice cake
Hummus with seasonal vegetables, flatbread
Scallop Gyoza with ginger shoyu
“Refuel” – apple, avocado, almond, beet, brown rice, cranberry, sweet potato, kale, spinach, pomegranate vinaigrette
Korean Fried Chicken with pickle, potato scallion waffle, seasoned maple syrup
Truffle Mac and Cheese with gruyere, bacon, bread crumbs, chives
Trout with gnocchi, radish, snap pea, sauce gribiche, lemon beurre blanc
Cheddar Biscuits with pimento cheese
Blackened Cauliflower with garden crudite, panisse, Moroccan yogurt sauce
Dark Chocolate and Peanut Butter with bourbon chocolate cookies, peanut butter mousse, cherry ice cream
Yuzu Creme Brulee with sesame cookies
Sundae Nachos with chocolate waffle, pizzle cookies, banana, coconut almond ice cream, hot fudge, caramel sauce, fresh berries, almonds, whipped cream
Culinary quote of the week:
Those who feed on politics learn to dine on baloney. — James J. Kilpatrick
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Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers.
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