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report on washington (state)

  • s

just a quick note...thanks for the tips on eating in
washington! the best was the Flying Fish on 1st
Avenue in Belltown. I had a succulent foie gras and
sea scallop followed by a wonderful grilled mahi mahi
with sauteed mushrooms and whipped sweet potato.
absolutely heavenly!

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  1. Nice to hear you enjoyed Flying Fish.

    Where else did you eat at ?

    13 Replies
    1. re: Gary Cheong

      A couple friends took me to Etta's Seafood, which you
      also mentioned. I had seared tuna which was pretty
      good, but not fabulous. the ahi tuna sashimi
      appetizer someone else had was excellent, so fresh!
      they also had fresh locally caught prawn, but it was a
      special that day, so I can't vouch for the regular
      thing.

      I also hit Obachine, where I love the oyster appetizer
      there. It is very lightly fried and coated in sesame
      seeds and comes with a delicious sauce made from
      cilantro, sake, soy sauce (?), sesame oil and several
      other things i cannot think of off the top of my
      head. and we also had a whole rockfish (I think) that
      was broiled or braised in a sweet sauce that
      definitely had soy sauce and probably some sake in
      it. very tender and perfectly seasoned.

      And a most noteworthy quick fix came out of Pike Place
      Market shop called Piroshky Piroshky. So delicious!
      Is there anywhere around here that makes it?

      I only had a couple of days, so that was all I managed
      to squeeze out of them. There was also this Bakery
      next to Piroshky Piroshky whose name escapes me, but
      they had really good brioche and tarts, and the breads
      looked pretty good, though I did not have a chance to
      try it.

      I stayed upstairs from this restaurant that supposedly
      has some of the best steak in the area called El
      Gaucho, but I did not have the chance to try it, how
      could I? There was so much wonderful fresh
      surrounding me!

      Oh, and last but not least, I went by Chukar Cherries,
      which had yummy snacks. Different types of dried
      berries and also chocolate covered cherries that
      really make my day.

      Rural washington doesn't have too much to offer in
      terms of food other than good standard diner fare.
      But it is the real thing, which I do, I admit, love
      dearly.

      oops, book!

      1. re: Sandy Paik

        Thanks for filling us in on more of your trip.

        Yeah, Chukar Cherries are pretty awesome. I can never
        get enough of them. When I first visited Seattle in
        1991, I went by the stand at Pike Market every single
        day. Now I get them mail order a couple of times a
        year. My favorite is the dried Rainier cherries, and
        I think very soon you can order the fresh Rainiers.

        Next time you go back there, make sure you go eat at
        Rovers.

        1. re: Gary Cheong

          Gary -
          I tried ALL the samples they had out and loved them!
          I also loved the truffle chocolate cherries (which I'm
          savoring right now)....and yes, you guessed it, i put
          my name down on the mail order catalog list in a
          heartbeat!

          I will definitely try Rovers next time i am out
          there. Where is it and what kind of food and what did
          you eat out there in seattle?

          1. re: Sandy Paik

            The address for Rovers is :

            2808 East Madison St.
            Ph : (206) 325-7442

            It is not in the downtown area, but a few minutes
            drive out on Madison St. I consider the chef Thierry
            Rautureau the best in Seattle. He's a crazy French
            guy with a wicked sense of humor. I would say his
            food is modern French, using North Western ingredients.

            I recommend you leave yourself in his hands and order
            the tasting menu. Pay whatever it costs, it is worth
            every penny.

            Also read my post about Victoria, BC . That's a side
            trip you can take also when you are in Seattle.

            1. re: Gary Cheong

              I noticed the post on victoria right after i responded
              to yours on this one, and thought to myself that you
              must've spent some time in that area! I would've gone
              to victoria if i had been out in the pac NW longer,
              but since i spent so much time hiking, my
              culinary/urban pac nw experiences were cut short.

              take care,

              sp

              p.s. i finally stumbled across the penang you
              mentioned in chinatown two days ago. it's just
              starting to go too far. to my sorrow, i'd say it's
              officially a chain now...unfortunately

              1. re: Sandy Paik

                Just in case your next trip to Seattle is more
                culinary and urban instead of hiking, here's a trick I
                use to get to Victoria and Sooke, BC quickly.

                First, ditch your rental car in Seattle. The ferry
                that takes both you and your car to Victoria takes too
                long (4 1/2 hours, I think) and I found the schedule
                inconvenient. You burn most of your day this way.

                Call the Victoria Clipper. It has high speed
                catamarans that take you to Victoria's Inner Harbour
                in either 3 or 2 hours, depending on the boat. It
                leaves Seattle harbor at Pier 69 early in the morning.
                Ask for the special advanced purchase rate (about $80
                roundtrip) -- only catch is that it is non-refundable
                and you can't change anything, so STAY ON SCHEDULE.

                Also reserve a rental car in Victoria. Only one
                company has shuttle vans to meet you when you clear
                customs -- I believe it's Dollar Rentacar. Use them,
                or you have to find your own way to the others.
                Rentals should be about US$30 - $35 a day. Return car
                in Victoria before taking catamaran back to Seattle.

                1. re: Gary Cheong

                  Once you get to Victoria, do _not_ take the tour bus to
                  the gardens (the name of which slips my mind). The
                  gardens themselves are worth a visit, but the bus
                  is EXTREMELY slow and you will blow your entire
                  trip sitting in a bus. I second the idea of a rental
                  car.

                  1. re: Josh

                    Thanks for the tips (again and again!). Victoria was
                    actually on my list of things to do out there, but I
                    just ran out of time (go figure). Actually, the
                    Victoria Clipper pier was straight down the hill from
                    where I stayed. I will definitely take your advice
                    next time around, including the rental car!

                    1. re: Sandy Paik
                      t
                      Tom Armitage

                      I realize that it's been a long time since anyone added anything new about Washington restaurants, but I'm new to this web site, and thought I would add this brief suggestion. Check out Western Avenue below the Pike Place Market (north of Madison). Wild Ginger is an excellent Asian-fusion restarurant. Also check out the Spanish Table for a good assortment of Spanish cheeses, olives, and meats, and a big collection of Spanish wines downstairs. For high end eating in Seattle, I had a terrific meal at Fuller's in the Sheraton Hotel last time I was there. There are tons of other good places. I lived in Seattle for 21 years (1972-1993), and still get up there five or six times a year. So if anyone wants more info, I'd be happy to oblige.

                      1. re: Tom Armitage
                        t
                        Tom Armitage

                        One more idea--how could I forget--the Dahlia Lounge on Fourth Avenue..

                        1. re: Tom Armitage

                          Hey, I just found this site thanks to my bro who lives in Walla Walla. I live in Pasco, the center of a culinary wasteland, which also happens to be located in the wettest, dreariest desert on earth (in my somewhat informed opinion). One of my fond memories is a trip to the Harrisburg, PA area when a colleague asked me, "Ken, do you eat to live, or do you live to eat?" This was after I had dragged him and the rest of the party to a number of different venues looking for (and finding) tasty food in the Harrisburg area. So I do qualify as a chowhound. In my work I've traveled frequently to the D.C. area, Beijing, Seoul, North Korea, and Russia. I've even had business trips that included Europe and one memorable 4-day stretch in France with the aforementioned bro.

                          There is good food east of the mountains in WA, but It's not nearly as easy to find as on the west side. In the Tri-City area, aside from the homes of some gifted friends, there isn't much. The Mandarin House in Richland has pretty good Chinese food (Mongolian beef if you're there for lunch) and Apollo has decent Greek food with generous portions. Taking a large group there is a disaster as the service can't keep up. King and I has reasonable Thai cuisine, but you can do just about as well at Thai Spices which is located in a Conoco gas station! Kinnori, an Indian restaurant also co-located with a Conoco gas station, is pretty good as long as you stick with ingredients readily available in Tri-Cities (don't order the goat). A major shame is that we don't have any Mexican restaurants that are worth going to unless you count the little taqueria wagons in East Pasco where the food can be heavenly or hazardous and you won't know until later.

                          Further afield in E. WA go to Greystone or Birchfield Manor in Yakima. For more of a snack, Grant's brewpub is excellent. Gasperetti's used to be on the top list, but my last meal there wasn't quite up to snuff.

                          In the Spokane area, go to Luna. I don't know Spokane very well (my son always wants to go to Azteca), but you won't be sorry if you go to Luna. My bro was impressed with the wine list and we all raved over the food. Not cheap, but go to Luna.

                          1. re: Ken Ames

                            Ken, welcome!

                            A few things...first, since you know Korea so well, check out the awesome Korea threads on the General Topics board. Lots of great info, people chiming in from Seoul, etc.

                            Also, would love to discuss Harrisburg area with you...check out our Pennsylvania message board.

                            Sorry it's such a wasteland up there (though you can use these boards as a resource for your travels); hopefully we'll be able to recruit more chowhounds from near you so you guys can commiserate on the paucity of fine chow...or maybe hip each other to hidden treasure. Hey, if there's a Filipino nabe, you could at least have halo-halo in Walla Walla. Which reminds me...do insiders just call it "Walla"?

                            ciao

                            1. re: Ken Ames

                              In response to the understandable but a bit misinformed vision of Eastern Washington -- there IS great food there! In Spokane alone -- go to Mizuna for fresh, fabulous gourmet vegetarian; Niko's for traditional Greek with a great wine list; The Winged Lion for continental, and the little hotel itself is a recently restored turn-of-the-century gem; Fugazzi, and its sidekick the Cavallino Lounge for cocktails, both are in the Hotel Lusso, a small, hip hotel in the heart of downtown. Someone mentioned Luna , YES, but there is also PAPRIKA -- you HAVE to check it out, on South Grand. And Patsy Clark's Mansion in the old Brown's Addition neighborhood. There's more: Check out an article in Northwest Palate Magazine this month (3/00) on Spokane...gives all the skinny on Spokane. (My hometown!)

                              Then, of course, there's Beverly's in Couer d'Alene, Idaho, right on the lake. Curtis Smith (an old friend) does a great job, and they got a Wine Spectator award of Excellence last year (not that that means a WHOLE lot, but hey) .

                              Eat well in Eastern WA, where it is always sunny, and the wine country calls! (Call me prejudiced...)