Fine food in Bellingham WA
Driving from Vancouver to Seattle, we stopped in Bellingham for lunch. We stumbled into a tiny but popular downtown restaurant, Torre Cafe, at 119 N. Commercial Street. As jaded Manhattanites, we were astonished by the fantastic Italian food -- homemade Genoa specialities such as Pesto Lasagna and Italian Wedding Soup.
For dessert, we made our way to Mallard Ice Cream (207 E Holly Street, though they are moving around the corner soon). It would be a crime to pass through Bellingham without stopping in here. They pride themselves on 300 flavors made from all natural and local ingredients. About 30 are available on a typical day, and may include ice cream flavors such as vanilla & black pepper, cardomom, or nectarine. The friendly guy behind the counter insisted we taste just about every flavor before deciding. I had the "indecision cone" with one scoop of lime & mint sorbet and one scoop of fresh raspberry ice cream, and begged them to open a location nearer to New York City.
I am new to Bellingham via Vancouver. I have been trying to find a place that I can buy lamb shanks. Lydon butcher only had 2, Ferndale butcher never answered their phone. Old World deli is has sliced meats only and Fred Meyer had only a couple and they were too small.
I can travel between Bellingham and Camano for a good butcher. Also, any place to buy fresh lobster. And no because I just moved here I am not allowed back into Canada for several more months until I have completed lots more rounds of paper work.
Also, please any recommendations for seafood lunches/chowders in La Conner? (That won't break the bank?)
The Sipping Chef
Hi! I've gotten lamb shanks at the Sehome Haggen, but they aren't always there. The butcher types working in the back can be helpful. I haven't seen them anywhere else. I've heard good things about the butcher in Ferndale but haven't made it there myself. I don't think anyone at the Bellingham Farmer's Market sells lamb, but you can get good pork and beef. It might be worth asking at the Coop--I've never seen them there, but they do order all kinds of stuff for customers, so maybe that extends to meat.
Food Pavilion/Cost Cutter sells Maine lobster around Memorial Day, I think. Otherwise I think your best bet is Seattle-- Uwajimaya? Or just ordering them online.
Can't help you with LaConner. But welcome to Bellingham. I love it here, despite the kinda lame food scene. We have access to some fabulous ingredients.
We used to be able to find shanks at Haggen fairly regularly (the Mt Vernon one, though, not B'ham). Now we buy lamb directly from farmers, usually Martiny Suffolks up near Concrete, who I think have been selling at the B'ham market as well. Have you tried Mediterranean Specialties? They often have good lamb.
In LaConner, my highest rec is for Nell Thorn. They're not strictly a seafood place but they do incredible things with squid, oysters and halibut. And they don't charge nearly as much as they should.