Chef Kwame Onwuachi at RSVP

It's not every day that we get a proper famous chef in Lagos. The odds are even longer when said chef is cooking in a Lagos restaurant. But over the weekend, Top Chef alum, Kwame Onwuachi, took over the RSVP kitchen. 

A lot of people might not get the hype, but it's very rare to find a chef of color navigating elite culinary spaces. His first venture post Top Chef, the uber-expensive Shaw Bijou, got panned by DC restaurant critics unfortunately. 

Other taste memories — a sliver of beet-cured hamachi on avocado puree; honeynut squash veloute poured over Parmesan foam and pickled squash— resemble what a lot of other chefs are doing. While there’s nothing incorrect about either offering, there’s also not an ahhh moment as you eat them. Both courses are merely pleasant.
— Washington Post

The bad reviews came in fast and each one was more scathing than the previous. Sadly, Shaw Bijou closed down in less than three months. 

The warm host who sees you out will make it clear, as all her colleagues have, that they were very glad you came.

You might be, too—if you lower your expectations and hope for sparkle, not fireworks.
— Washingtonian

You can't hold a Nigerian man down though. He has since bounced back with his new spot, Kith/Kin in the InterContinental Hotel at The Wharf DC. We're definitely checking it out for #EatDrinkTravel later this year.

We slacked a bit on making reservations because, for some reason, because we thought we could get a walk-in table. Maybe we got a bit carried away, eh? Anyway, we called a couple favors and friend of the blog, Chef Imoteda, hooked us up. 

IMG_0037.jpeg

A lot of people get hung up by the portion sizes on tasting menus but we don't know about you but if you're eating seven courses there's a limit to how much of everything you can eat so you don't tap out at 5. Further, the chef doesn't want to have you feeling so stuffed and uncomfortable that your experience of the later courses is marred. 

(Ed Note: A tasting menu is a collection of small portions of several dishes served by a restaurant as a single meal. It is not supposed to have "regular" sized portions by design)

The dining room was very dimly lit (ambiance lighting you know) so bear with us on the picture quality. 

On the food, the first two courses were definitely standouts. The lamb and the dessert were excellent as well, but the cucumber and brussels sprouts were just so good. Apparently, Kwame made the ricotta himself. The corn was our least favorite of the lot. It had too much cream and could have done with more garri.