Sunday, June 28, 2009

Sleepless in Seattle Maybe, But Never Hungry

A recent trip to the opposite coast brought a whole new opportunity in dining experiences - ahhh Seattle.. I think I could live there.. at least for a while.. So sit back and get comfy, this East Coast girl is going to take you on a mini-eating tour of Seattle... so enjoy!
My first night in town, my faithful travel guide and host, D. took me to one of the few places he could think of that served dinner after 10:00pm - hey - it's a long flight in from the east coast - and I was starving! So he took me to a place called The Five Spot in the Queen Anne part of Seattle. It was cozy, comfortable and down right delicious - what a perfect choice for a light dinner. The restaurant apparently has a theme that changes every 3 months - this includes not only the decor but also the menu! When we arrived it must have been "Under the Sea" or something of the sort -fabulous seafood dishes made up the menu and giant paper fish and other sea creatures hung from the ceiling. We started off by sharing an order of fried sardines - served with a horseradish sour cream-type dipping sauce that perfectly balanced out the saltiness of the sardines. This may have been my favorite part of the meal - next I had a smoked salmon (hey, it's Seattle, right?) salad - delicious, intense and fresh - it was like no salmon I had ever had on the east coast - All in all a great late night dinner - it was a playful and truly enjoyable atmosphere ...
The next highlight was dinner the following night at a soul food place called The KingFish Cafe - mmmmm - this entire experience was so satisfying... probably my most memorable meal in Seattle.
D. and I started off by sharing what could of been a meal in itself - the crab and catfish cakes with a homemade tartar sauce. These cakes were incredibly rich and packed with seafood, peppers, spices and just a few lonely breadcrumbs to hold the whole thing together! Anticipating a problem trying to eat my actual dinner, I held back and didn't finish my crab cakes...although it was a tough choice... Which brings us to the next part of the meal - for his dinner D. orders something "light" - Down Home Mac & Cheese - a huge mound of macaroni and 2 cheeses, baked up with peppers and mushrooms... ! This is the true definition of sinful - and anyone with a less forgiving metabolism would of seen the effects of eating such a decadent dish almost immediately - but, sigh... some people are just lucky..

Dinner for me was a griddled catfish with herbed grits and greens. It was so amazing, so homey and just plain delicious that I tried my best to eat it all, but it so substantial, and anything but light.. that in the end, the food won... So did D., as he got my leftovers.. Honestly I think it was all part of his master plan .. ordering that appetizer was his idea after all... hmmmm. Anyway, all is forgiven, because after all I'm a generous person that believes the dining experience is best when shared, and this was a phenomenal meal I won't soon forget.
Next, after an almost impossible mission to try and find a parking spot, we made our way to B & O Espresso - because after a huge meal what do you need more than a rich dessert? I know - nothing.. ! So we sit down and D. doesn't even bother with the menu - he gets his favorite dessert there: "chocolate pot" - and I have to concede - this was probably the best dessert they offer - it looked amazing, oozing chocolaty goodness all over the plate... and I try the flourless chocolate cake - dense, fudgey and delicious, although I can only manage to get 3 bitefuls into my already over-stuffed stomach... and it was hard, but I decide, trying to maintain a good impression, to stop here - or risk popping a button on my already snug fitting jeans.. I'm pretty sure I made the right choice. (I did, right?)
So after what I've managed to eat so far you're thinking - that's it! There's no more room in your stomach, there's no more desire to try anything else, you're sick of food, can't eat another bite - Ha! You don't know me at all do you? I wake up early the next morning with breakfast on my mind... as usual...
So to satisfy my morning bout of starvation, D. takes me on a lovely ferry ride to Kingston to a little French Crepe joint called J'Aime Les Crepes. Now, I've unfortunately never been to France, but the authenticity of these lovely crepes was not lost on me for a second. The batter was light and airy, the fillings, both sweet and savory options, heavenly. I've never had a crepe on this continent that was as good. I opted for a smoked salmon and sour cream dill crepe. D. goes right for the dark Belgian chocolate and banana (he's okay in my book). The crepes are made to order, and huge... we sit out front and enjoy them in the fresh air, as if in a cafe on some fashionable boulevard in Paris, every last bite brought me back (ok, not "back")... ah, je me souviens... Seattle!

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