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Oct 19, 2010 04:39 PM

Restaurant Week Raves

Curious what restaurants people are enjoying so far. New to Seattle and looking to explore the Seattle food scene since the price seems right.

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  1. I was very pleasantly surprised at the steak I had at Seastar in Bellevue Sunday night.
    Nice thick prime sirloin perfectly medium rare topped with a slice of what tasted like pickled red onion and blue cheese. Had a port wine reduction, kind of boring slices of portabella, and fingerling potatoes too.

    Maytag blue cheese salad was meh. Kind of underdressed and the greens weren't the best quality. I wish I had gotten the bisque.

    Wifey had the crabcakes which she enjoyed. I didn't feel like fish that night so didn't taste although I've had them before and they're fine. The sugar snap peas on her plate were very fresh and tender. She gave them to me since she doesn't like them.

    Desserts were okay. Coconut cream pie tasted good the next day. Chocolate cake was okay.

    The restaurant was packed.

    Went to Kirkland Purple tonight.
    Warm goat cheese was very good.

    I got the gorgonzola pasta. Large portion. It wasn't excessively rich and creamy which I kind of liked compared to some similar pastas I've had where you can barely finish 1/4 of the dish.

    Wifey's cod was very good. Once again, a large portion with some bok choy and pancetta potatoes.

    We made the mistake of also ordering the andouille pizza which I thought was the best thing we had tonight. It also was surprisingly large portion. Not that the pizza was big, but it had a lot of toppings. I can't recall all but it included the sausage, goat cheese, some other cheese, arugala, and I think roasted garlic.

    We got our desserts to go so can't comment on them.

    1. Will be trying the $25 menu at Il Bistro next week, hopefully a well prepared meal in a nice setting. Looking forward to it, our first time there.

      Il Bistro
      93A Pike Street, Seattle, WA 98101

      1 Reply
      1. re: curiousgeo

        I only recently discovered Il Bistro myself, and am now quite smitten with it. I have tried all of the appetizers on the RW menu; all are good, don't discount the bruschetta.

        The salmon dish listed in the entree choices was the special the night I was there for dinner, and it was incredible! My server brought me a taste of wine he recommended to pair with it, and it was one of the best pairings I've ever experienced. Sadly, I already had a glass and couldn't handle another. Sorry to say I don't recall what it was (it was a red), but I'm sure they can help you if you're interested.

        In fact, I blogged about my visit; I hope it's kosher to share the link:


        Il Bistro
        93A Pike Street, Seattle, WA 98101

      2. S.O. and I went to Pink Door last night for their Restaurant Week Menu. I had always wanted to try this place and their $25 menu seemed to have a lot of good options.

        To start we shared the Roasted Beet Salad with Gorgonzola and an order of Gnocchi with a cream sauce and sauteed spinach. We enjoyed the gnocchi quite a bit, especially the creamy sauce which accompanied it. We both liked the beet salad, too, but we agreed any roasted vegetable with a side of good cheese would make a fine salad, and there was really nothing too adventurous or creative about this salad in particular.

        For the main course, I ordered the Cioppino and my S.O had the Pappardelle with meat sauce. I thought the Cioppino was good, hearty, but we both agreed they went heavy on the herbs. This led to not quite enough seafood flavor in broth, despite a very large portion of fish, squid, shrimp, manila clams, and mussels. The Pappardelle was fine, but again nothing very creative about this. I thought there should have been a bit more sauce, especially when comparing the portion size to the huge Cioppino. I guess maybe the pasta is on the menu as more of a safe item.

        For dessert we had the Tiramisu and the Lemon Tart Brulee. We enjoyed both and I especially liked the Brulee, even though I am not usually a fan of lemon tart.

        Our drinks for the evening were a Manhattan with dried cherries which S.O quite liked and a glass of some local Cab/Sauv which I thought was very good.

        Overall, we felt the meal was good, but definitely not worth more then the $25 per person. Excluding the gnocchi and the Tiramisu, everything we ordered seemed pretty safe and not out of reach of a determined amateur chef. I think the only redeeming factor was the portion size of the cioppino, the drinks, and the good desserts (after having quite a few disappointing desserts at past Restaurant Week dinners at other restaurants, Pink Doors' were refreshing).

        I'd go back to Pink Door (more likely on somebody elses dollar) to try their regular menu, and maybe see a show.

        *A note about service: A lot of the reviews I've read about Pink Door mention bad service. Our only encounter with this was that our drinks arrived after our appetizers, but I can this as an issue with a busy night and not necessarily bad servers. A party of 15 had just arrived and I think this through everybody off a little bit. I think in general the quality of service in the Seattle goes hand-in-hand with the informal atmosphere at most of the higher-end restaurants. Besides the drinks issue, our service was acceptable and definitely not as rude as described in some previous reviews.

        Pink Door
        1919 Post Aly, Seattle, WA 98101

        1. No raves so far - Had lunch at Blueacre that was good, and dinner at Flying Fish that was a bit disappointing.

          Lunch at Blueacre: fried razor clam fritters - good fried doughy things with spicy toppings, but no real razor clam experience. Idaho trout "grenobloise" was good, but pretty rich covered in browned butter. It came with a small cup of overcooked and over olive oiled mixed veg, but no starch. My dining companion had the pulled pork sandwich (she said it was very good) with a cup of potato salad on the side. For dessert we had chocolate pecan pie with rum raisin ice cream - good, but very sweet. Exremely large portion. I had wanted the angel food cake but "house-made cool whip" sounds even more revolting than regular store-bought cool whip, so I passed. Service was fine, but a little overly friendly for a business lunch, imo, and the music choice was weird given the downtown lunch crowd (Beyonce? Really?).

          Flying Fish was more disappointing.
          Starters: lamb riblets with a 5 spice rub was nice, but my "crispy salmon roll" turned out to be a really gummy tempura'd salmon/mayo roll. It was hard to eat because the rice was so gummy.
          Mains: SO had mushroom risotto with seared scallops (ok) and I had the sturgeon which looked, tasted and had the texture of a chicken breast (until you get to the fishy "dark" blood area at the end which I found extremely unpleasant).
          Dessert: warm grappa brownie with vanilla ice cream. Very rich chocolate brownie with sweet gooey center and lame vanilla ice cream (with large ice crystals throughout). Disappointing.

          Flying Fish
          2234 1st Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121

          1. Last night was our first outing of Restaurant Week: Rover's. For me, it's the only way I will be likely to eat there, so it was definitely worthwhile, but like many RW experiences, probably not as good as you would get if you went for the full-price offering.

            Our table's impressions:
            1st Course
            Butternut Squash Soup - velvety and rich, like a bowlful of fall
            Smoked salmon - hot-smoked northwest style, very flavorful
            (None of us ordered the salad)

            Main Course
            Vegetable Terrine with Farro - quite good for a veg entree
            Pacific Cod with foraged shrooms and chard - perfectly cooked, savory flavors, slightly sloppy presentation (in this regard does not measure up to the Halibut on Canlis's RW menu last April)
            Guinea Fowl - I almost wish I'd had this, the accompanying roasted vegetables looked so good

            Espresso Creme Brulee - delicious, lighter than some
            Chocolate Gateau - good, our least favorite dessert
            Apple Tartlet - fantastic pastry crust, surprise winner

            One of our party opted for the $25 wine pairings, two of us had only the wines paired with our entrees. All were spot-on incredible.

            For me, the whole experience was magical, the atmosphere very warm, and the service gracious. I'm incredibly grateful to be offered the chance to visit a restaurant that's normally out of my reach. I blogged about more of my impressions:

            Canlis Restaurant
            2576 Aurora Ave N, Seattle, WA 98109

            2808 East Madison Street, Seattle, WA 98112

            1 Reply
            1. re: voodoobec

              Had lunch at Etta's with some coworkers yesterday. Everyone enjoyed their firsts: iceberg wedge w/ a deliciously tangy, yet light blue cheese or calamari with brown butter. The wedge was the perfect size considering the courses ahead.

              The table split 2nd course choices between the pork schnitzel and the beecher's cheese and apple sandwich. Schnitzel had a great texture (nothing compared to my Oma's, but I digress) and the sandwich was on the verge of deep-fried with a healthy serving of fries.

              Deserts were a great ending and, besides the coconut cream pie (a TD staple apparently), perfectly portioned. Pear sorbet was sweeter than expected and the orange blossom panna cotta tasted more of a vanilla bean, but won with the huckleberry sauce.

              Service wasn't the worst, nor the best I've had during RW but lunch took 2 hours.

              Dinner at Tilth was fantastic. Despite my Open Table VIP status (kidding of course), we got seated in a 2' X 2' space by the open window. They needed it open for all the hustle and bustle! The boyfriend won with the pumpkin soup starter, wild boar bolognase and the butterscotch pudding. Very thoughtful flavors and I got caught licking up that bolognase more than once!

              My cauliflower flan, albacore tuna and chocolate sorbet were well crafted but didn't feel like the stars of the menu per se. Service was excellent and perfectly timed despite the full house. It was RW at it's finest since we probably would not be able to go to Tilth otherwise. Now, however, we will do our best to fit it in our rotation!