October 29, 2020

Inside Downtown's New Khora, One of America's "Most Anticipated" Restaurants of the Year

Back in 2019, both Food & Wine and Vogue magazines named a forthcoming Cincinnati eatery to their lists of the "most anticipated" American restaurant openings of 2020. Well, the wait is over, because Khora inside downtown's Kinley Hotel is now open. Khora is helmed by chef Edward Lee and executive chef Kevin Ashworth. Ashworth, who worked alongside Lee for over a decade in Louisville at 610 Magnolia, MilkWood, and Whiskey Dry, is from Greater Cincinnati and is offering innovative twists on area classics. A press release says the restaurant — named after the ancient grain khorasan — aims to showcase "modern pasta dishes and small plates with a Midwest sensibility." And that includes a Cincinnati-style 3-Way made with lamb ragù. “My hope is our dishes will evoke a memory and bring comfort to guests with recognizable flavors,” says Ashworth in the press release. “Khora is meant to bring people together to have fun and treat themselves, especially during these difficult times.” The current menu includes the aforementioned 3-Way featuring gemelli made with Ohio semolina, topped with lamb ragù, pumpkin seeds and caramelized goat cheese; a German-inspired tartare with sauerkraut kimchi, everything seasoning, smoke and rye crackers; Spoonbill Caviar served with Saratoga chips, French onion dip, Grippo’s seasoning and chive; and a toasted rye Zucca with green apple, charred cabbage, pickled peppers, taleggio and black pepper. Desserts will be handled by executive pastry chef Megan Ketover, previously of Boca Restaurant Group. The current sweet offerings include a cornmeal cake with ras el hanout ice cream, cardamom plums, concord honeycrisp and caramelized milk jam; milk chocolate mascarpone with elderflower pear sorbet, candied citrus, chocolate almond cantucci and blood orange jam; and quince with tart green apple sorbet, quark custard, oat cake and crumble, and crispy wafers; among others. Khora is currently open for dinner 5:30-10 p.m. Monday-Saturday and for Saturday brunch from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. A release says lunch is coming soon. Call 513-977-2800 to make a reservation.
Photos by Hailey Bollinger

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Back in 2019, both Food & Wine and Vogue magazines named this Cincinnati eatery to their lists of the "most anticipated" American restaurant openings of 2020.
Hailey Bollinger

Back in 2019, both Food & Wine and Vogue magazines named this Cincinnati eatery to their lists of the "most anticipated" American restaurant openings of 2020.

The dining room at Khora, inside downtown's Kinley Hotel
Hailey Bollinger

The dining room at Khora, inside downtown's Kinley Hotel

Ohio Semolina - Gemelli "Cincy Style" ($25) with lamb ragout, pumpkin seeds, caramelized goat cheese
Hailey Bollinger

Ohio Semolina - Gemelli "Cincy Style" ($25) with lamb ragout, pumpkin seeds, caramelized goat cheese

Dry-aged beef tartare ($16) with everything seasoning, smoke, sauerkraut kimchi, rye crackers
Hailey Bollinger

Dry-aged beef tartare ($16) with everything seasoning, smoke, sauerkraut kimchi, rye crackers

A press release says the restaurant — named after the ancient grain khorasan — aims to showcase "modern pasta dishes and small plates with a Midwest sensibility."
Hailey Bollinger

A press release says the restaurant — named after the ancient grain khorasan — aims to showcase "modern pasta dishes and small plates with a Midwest sensibility."

Nduja ($12) 16 Bricks Whole Wheat, carrot butter, radish, pickled kohlrabi, mint
Hailey Bollinger

Nduja ($12) 16 Bricks Whole Wheat, carrot butter, radish, pickled kohlrabi, mint

Khora is helmed by chef Edward Lee and executive chef Kevin Ashworth, a Greater Cincinnati native. Desserts are ably handled by executive pastry chef Megan Ketover, previously of Boca Restaurant Group.
Hailey Bollinger

Khora is helmed by chef Edward Lee and executive chef Kevin Ashworth, a Greater Cincinnati native. Desserts are ably handled by executive pastry chef Megan Ketover, previously of Boca Restaurant Group.

Chocolate caramel tart ($13) with toffee puffed grains, crispy cocoa nib bark, spicebush creme fraiche
Hailey Bollinger

Chocolate caramel tart ($13) with toffee puffed grains, crispy cocoa nib bark, spicebush creme fraiche

A spread of dinner dishes available at Khora
Hailey Bollinger

A spread of dinner dishes available at Khora

“My hope is our dishes will evoke a memory and bring comfort to guests with recognizable flavors,” says chef Ashworth in the press release. “Khora is meant to bring people together to have fun and treat themselves, especially during these difficult times.”
Hailey Bollinger

“My hope is our dishes will evoke a memory and bring comfort to guests with recognizable flavors,” says chef Ashworth in the press release. “Khora is meant to bring people together to have fun and treat themselves, especially during these difficult times.”