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walking distance from denny & stewart? [sea]

Finspot Sep 24, 2008 12:53 PM

We're meeting a family friend at the Springhill Marriott (a block from Denny & Stewart), then continuing on to dinner. Any decent eateries in quick walking distance (10 min)? Thanks.

  1. frygirl Sep 25, 2008 11:23 AM

    Finspot - where did you go for dinner? I liked the suggestion for Dinette. That hadn't occured to me.

    6 Replies
    1. re: frygirl
      Finspot Sep 25, 2008 04:53 PM

      We're going tomorrow. I made a rez at Barolo, but after reading the rec for Dinette I may have to reconsider... Will let ya know! Thanks everyone.

      1. re: Finspot
        Finspot Sep 27, 2008 09:40 AM

        Well, we ended up going to Barolo and boy was I wrong about my worry that it might be too much of an intimate "date-type" place. As Barleywino said, it's much more of a "hipster/trendy" scene and he is very correct. Normally I loath these sort of spots and avoid them like the plague, but we were game on this particular night and went in with open minds.

        The problem with hipster/trendy though was on display right from the get-go--an emphasis on surface glam at the expense of actual service and quality. It's hard to take a restaurant seriously that has its hostess dress like a poledancer. We stood around waiting while a bunch of staff tried to figure out where and when we were going to eat, never mind the reservation. (Admittedly we were 15 minutes early, and a 3-top to boot.) Finally I suggested we'd go to the bar and they agreed that would be a good idea. Being a warm night and perhaps the last of the year, I ordered a mojito; the barkeep told me it would take a while and encouraged me to order something else. 45 minutes later our table was ready. My father would have blown a gasket by now but we weren't in a hurry, so no big deal.

        Our waiter was young and green and basically knew nothing about the food, but at least he was a nice guy and not sneering like some of the other staff. The sommelier was a much more complicated fellow and we didn't feel real comfortable with him. He suggested the cheapest bottle on the menu and assured us that it was really quite good, a real steal. Since my wife and I weren't paying, we went along with the game and I think he was genuinely surprised when we sent it back; it was awful. This put him in a huff ad so for the second bottle he went the other way and rec'd one of the more expensive on the list. I mean, come on. Can we have some professionalism please? We're just looking for a decent mid-range bottle to go with our food choices.

        On to the food. Our apps were fine if not distinguished. Baby octopus wasn't super tender but the sauce was good. Tuna tartare was pretty much as you'd expect. Most of the pasta plates were under $20, which was nice to see. My wife's dinner, tortelloni with porcini, was very intense and flavorful. Our guest and sponsor had a pasta dish, I forget which one, that he seemed to enjoy. I had the ossobuco, which was fairly tender and rich the way it ought to be, with the marrow prominent in the presentation, served over saffron risotto that was just okay. We skipped dessert.

        Overall, I'd give it a miss for next time.

        1. re: Finspot
          blue2000 Sep 27, 2008 09:45 AM

          Not to pile on, but Barolo gets consistently good marks on Chowhound, and the one time I ate there I was completely underwhelmed as well; especially in the service department. My husband asked our waiter if there were any particular dishes that were specialties of the house, and the waiter told him everything was a specialty of the house. We also had wine weirdness as well. The food was fine, but nothing remarkable, especially in the context of really outstanding Italian in Seattle, and I've never been back. I'm always curious though, when people recommend it here -- I always think what am I missing? Glad to know our experience wasn't unique.

          1. re: blue2000
            barleywino Sep 29, 2008 08:20 AM

            what would you consider to be really outstanding Italian in Seattle? I can't think of any places around here that fit that bill, unfortunately.

            1. re: barleywino
              terrier Sep 29, 2008 01:41 PM

              I think Spinasse qualifies.

          2. re: Finspot
            frygirl Sep 27, 2008 04:04 PM

            Finspot - thanks for the detailed dining report. I've never been to Barolo and probably won't after reading your assessment. It sounds like the food is not too bad, but I'm really big on atmosphere and 'hipster/trendy' just isn't my thing.

      2. terrier Sep 24, 2008 11:10 PM

        Dinette, consistently one of my favorite restaurants in Seattle, is quite close. Walk up Denny to Olive (4 blocks), turn right. It's just down the block (past the Elite) on your right.

        Atmosphere is relaxed and pleasant, food is a treat. I strongly recommend trying several of the toasts. Closed on Sundays (except for a semi-regular communal dinner) and it's worth calling ahead to reserve a table on Thurs/Fri/Sat.

        (I do not recommend Feierabend if your point of reference is the Palace Kitchen. I go there for German beer from time to time and it's pleasant for that, but the food is not great. It's definitely a bar first.)

        1. frygirl Sep 24, 2008 03:47 PM

          Feierabend is a good German pub at Yale & Harrison with casual atmosphere.

          1. barleywino Sep 24, 2008 01:28 PM

            Redfin in the HOtel Max is on 6th/7th and Stewart, Barolo is just around the corner from there on Westlake

            2 Replies
            1. re: barleywino
              Finspot Sep 24, 2008 09:19 PM

              Is Barolo a fun atmosphere, or more of a "date place"? Full disclosure: I've never actually met my dinner companion and don't want to be stuck somewhere uptight. Palace Kitchen would be my definition of a loose, good restaurant.

              1. re: Finspot
                barleywino Sep 24, 2008 09:32 PM

                it is definitely not "uptight". sit in the bar/lounge area if you can. it is more hipster/trendy swank than Palace Kitchen, which has more of a campus-town tavern vibe to me.

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