Warm summer nights beg for outdoor dining, and Orchard City Kitchen answers the call with a large patio perfect for dinner under colorful umbrellas and twinkling lights.

The New American restaurant from chef Jeffrey Stout (formerly of Alexander’s Steakhouse) opened in November at the Pruneyard in Campbell. Orchard City Kitchen offers a variety of globally influenced small plates, designed for sharing, either on the patio or in the airy and stylish dining room, overlooked by a busy open kitchen.

I’m often wary of restaurants that reach in too many directions for inspiration—it’s a challenge to master one cuisine, let alone a dozen. But Orchard City Kitchen pulls it off, with confident riffs on regional dishes like KFC (Korean fried chicken, $12), the Triple B, biscuits with honey butter and thick sliced bacon ($6), and Chiang Mai sausage, grilled on spears of sugar cane ($13). The kitchen recommends two dishes per person, giving diners a chance to sample many tastes from the wide-ranging menu.

The Korean fried chicken was served as tender, boneless nuggets, fried crispy and tossed in a sauce that perfectly balanced sweet and hot. Our order disappeared within minutes, and it was no surprise to learn that, on a menu that changes week to week based on what’s in season, the KFC is a permanent fixture.

Ramen “pasta” ($12), with hen of the woods mushrooms and a soft poached egg, is definitely not for ramen purists, but this broth-free version, with springy noodles and a sauce of egg yolk and pecorino, was rich and satisfying. Crab toast ($17) was piled high with fluffy clouds of Dungeness crab, but the advertised flavors of whipped feta and Serrano pepper didn’t come through. I much preferred the lobster dumplings ($15), served in a generous portion, with tender chunks of lobster in each bite and a simple dressing of chili oil and garlic.


The Hurricane Kick.

This is bar food at it’s best, and luckily there’s an extensive house cocktail program to accompany your meal. The Hurricane Kick ($11) blends tequila with the sweet and flowery notes of mixed-berry grenadine and Crème Yvette, underpinned by an herbal splash of the Italian liqueur Averna. Another Italian liqueur, the bittersweet Cynar, shows up in the Earthworm Jim ($12), along with mezcal, pomegranate and an umami hit from heirloom tomato jam. Orchard City Kitchen also offers a surprisingly deep wine list, divided into wines from the old world and the new.

Service is friendly and professional, and servers were happy to recommend favorite drinks and dishes. Like many small plates restaurants, the service suffers a bit from pacing problems. On two recent visits, we received many of our dishes at the same time and some grew cold before we could start them. A more leisurely pace would suit the casual vibe of the restaurant better—and give diners more time to sample different cocktails with their meal.

Dessert offers a last chance to linger on the patio. Despite the restaurant’s name, which harkens back to Campbell’s past as an orchard town, the dessert list was surprisingly free of pies or other fruit-based options. No matter—the crème brûlée with rock sugar ($6) was well executed and the chocolate marquise with sea salt, extra virgin olive oil and ginger cream ($6) breathed new life into a classic, balancing rich chocolate with the crunchy bite of Maldon salt and the mild spice of ginger cream.

Orchard City Kitchen
1875 South Bascom Avenue #190, Campbell, CA