A dining club for hip, young Seattleites meets once a month for dinner and drinks. High jinks ensue.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Dining Highlights 2006

I just wanted to commemorate some of my favorite meals/restaurants from this year...

Best Pizza: Hands down - Zachary's in the Bay Area. Spinach and mushroom deep dish. Sigggghhhh. Literally nothing of this Earth can compare. (Best Seattle Pizza: Serious Pie. Delicious. It's almost unfair having Zachary's to set the bar.)

Best Happy Hour: Sazerac -- LOVE IT! They have a really nice selection on their bar menu (clams, pizzas, sausages, grilled veggies, etc.) and I believe everything is $5 during happy hour. It's extremely reasonable. Plus, Sazerac is rarely so crowded that you have trouble finding somewhere to sit.

Best Breakfast: Tough call, tough call. I'm inclined to go with the Maltby Cafe since it's new (to me) and their food is awesome. BUT I also really like the OPH since I can get a somewhat quasi-healthy meal (egg-whites-only, baked, vegetarian omelette, hold the cheese), whereas at the Maltby everything is slathered in so much grease that no matter how I modify my meal it's still a heart attack waiting to happen. PLUS no matter what you can't skip having a cinnamon roll.

Best Downtown Restaurant: 94 Stewart. Love the Crab Sandwich and the Fried Avocado. So yummy! I can't think of a restaurant I like better than 94 Stewart.

Best Sandwich: Toss up between The Baguette Box and Honey Hole... since I don't think I visited Hillside Quickies in 2006. Both are delicious gourmet sandwich places. Honey Hole is a little more down home and has a funky bar vibe, and it has some really good vegetarian options (I can't think of any other restaurant with seitan on the menu besides the Hillside Quickies). The Baguette Box is like pan-Asian/Asian-fusiony cuisine served on a baguette. Pretty yummy. I've only been to each a couple times, so hard to decide a clear winner.

Best Sushi: I haven't eaten much high-quality sushi this year. I have to give props to Nijo's Chili Cha Cha roll though. Softshell crab, tobiko, jalapeno, and avocado. So good! Well worth the $10+ price tag. Another great sushi place is Kozue in Wallingford. They have both avant-garde/fusion-y kinds of rolls as well as very traditional Japanese cuisine.

Best Vegetarian: The Teapot!!! I <3 the Teapot! This was one of the highlights of my stay at La Casa de Dan y Rico. The Spicy Eggplant is so yummy! And I love that they have brown rice!!

Best Latin American Meal: This year I finally tried Mama's Mexican Restaurant with Tia. It was pretty good, but the service was lousy and the majority of its VAST menu was the super-Americanized Mexican (extra cheese, lettuce, etc.). I did have a really good carne asada taco, though. Hmmm... Giving this some more thought, I'd say my favorite was La Isla (formerly Sofrito Rico) in Ballard. There are a few Mexican places I want to try in 2007 -- there's one near my office and one in Beacon Hill that got rave reviews from the weeklies. I have extremely high standards for Mexican (being from California -- hell, my grandmother used to cook more Mexican food than Japanese food), so we'll see if they measure up.

Best Dessert: Pies & Pints. Of all places!! I love their giant peanut butter cup. A close second is the peanut butter pie at Zoka in the Greenlake/Tangletown neighborhood.

Anyone else have some favorite meals they want to commemorate??

Baguette Box - Late Review

Lenny, Travis, Hannah, Robert (and Emma and Ethan) joined me at The Baguette Box a few Saturdays ago and we had a great time. I had the Drunken Chicken sandwich, which is The Baguette Box's claim to fame -- it was a lot like ordering Sweet & Sour Chicken or General Tso's Chicken from a Chinese restaurant and putting it on a giant baguette. Very tasty! Still, I think I actually prefer the Lemongrass Grilled Steak sandwich that I had on my first visit.

I love the fact that they have dog posters everywhere!!! And yet there are no Frenchy pictures -- I plan to donate some framed pictures of Sidney to add a touch of class.

We finished the night at Cafe Verite/Cupcake Royale in Madrona. We were a bit worried because part of Madrona still lacked power following the windstorm. As we drove up, most of Madrona appeared to be dark, but we saw two workers inside the coffee shop, so we headed inside. Because they had so many leftover cupcakes (I guess people assumed they would be closed due to the power outages) they offered the large cupcakes to us at $1 a piece or 50% off!! It's becoming so common to get deals on the cupcakes at the Madrona Cupcake Royale, I'm going to expect this preferential treatment every time I go there!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Thoughts on the Baguette Box

Perfect for adventuresome eaters, especially adults. Thin pickings for the under six year old crowd. I loved it! The kiddos went hungry, thankfully a trip to Madrona and Cupcake Royale fixed that.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Change in Plans...

So this Saturday, we will be heading to The Baguette Box for gourmet sandwiches (they are DELICIOUS!) and french fries with truffle oil (YUM-MO!)! The Baguette Box is located at 1203 Pine (between Boren & Minor, I believe).

7 p.m. Be there or be square!

The Baguette Box

Friday, December 08, 2006

Thanksgiving Rundown

So I never posted about my family's Thanksgiving feast. We had about 30 people over (this was the small year)... The feast included:
  • Sushi;
  • Spinach dip and bread;
  • Hummus with pita bread and vegetables (guess who contributed this store-bought item!);
  • A 7-layer dip and chips;
  • Cold cuts and cheese;
  • Two 25-lb FRIED turkeys (pictures below) -- as well as a separate package of turkey wings;
  • A whole salmon;
  • Rice;
  • Mashed potatoes;
  • Stuffing and gravy;
  • Chinese chicken salad;
  • Candied yams;
  • Green beans;
  • Two cheesecakes;
  • Two homemade pumpkin pies;
  • A pumpkin cake; and
  • A pineapple-upside down cake.

Well, guess what -- we ran out of food!!! I think we had some cheesecake and pumpkin pie left the next day, but that was pretty much it. Hahahaha! Next year, there will probably be almost twice as many people, so there better be more than twice the amount of food.

Here are some pictures of one of the turkeys meeting its maker...

Friday, December 01, 2006

Where We've Been... and Where We're Going

Where We've Been:
Aaron - September 23: Paseo Caribbean...
Hannah - October 21: Tilth
Tia - November 18: Kabul

And Where We're Going (subject to change of course!):
Jerrod - December 16: Volterra
Rico - January 2007: TBD
Travis - February 2007: TBD
Lenny - March 2007: TBD
Robert - April 2007: TBD
Wendy - May 2007: The Baguette Box

NOTE THE REVISED ORDER -- Travis has been moved up (since Travis was originally misplaced in the order since I didn't know his last name) and Robert has been inserted as April 2007. Sighhhhhh... And I'm still picking in May.