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Sep 7, 2012 02:27 PM

Kirkland - recommendations ?

Coming down for a music event on Oct. 20 at 7pm. Thought we'd leave Vancouver early and arrive early around 4pm for some strolling/shopping and of course a bite. Thinking of Mediterranean/tapas and my search came up with Two Twelve on Central, Padria, and Cafe Veloce as the higher-ranked ones that would seem up our alley.

Any comments on these, or others I should consider ?

Looking for about $20-25pp before taxes.


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  1. I've been away from the Seattle area for a couple years, but I've been to Padria and Cafe Veloce. Cafe Veloce is decent, but definitely Italian, rather than Mediterranean. They have a website if you want to check out their menu selections. For Mediterranean, Santorini on Central Way has better food than Padria, in my opinion, but both places are pretty casual dining, order at the counter and seat yourself. If you're not than concerned about dining atmosphere, I'd choose Santorini, the food is better and it's in downtown Kirkland, in the shopping district and is a nicer area to walk around. Padria is located in a shopping center in the suburbs, across the street from Juanita Beach, but not much else to see.

    Here's another listing of restaurants in Kirkland. Downtown and Carillon Point are probably the neighborhoods you want to stick with to stay close to the action.

    1 Reply
    1. re: gmm

      I know the OP has come and gone but I needed to post and say (for any future viewers) that I cannot believe someone recommended Cafe Veloce. My parents love this place and have for years, and it's awful. AWFUL. I've had spaghetti with oil/garlic here where the oil was rancid. They have Italian nachos on their menu. Think about that. One of their most popular dishes is where they mix up marinara and alfredo sauce, and put it on pasta with boneless skinless chunks of chicken. That tells you all you need to know. They have a lot of annoying habits like, sprinkling shredded parm (the kind that comes pre shredded) around the rim of your plate, so it just blows/falls off you plate. I could go on and on.

    2. Of the three you listed Two Twelve is definitely the best, Lotus. Padria is pedestrian at best. I agree with gmm about Santorini. It's also very good.

      7 Replies
      1. re: firecracker

        Thanks GMM and FC. Looks like 2-12 and Santorini are our shortlisted two :-)

        1. re: LotusRapper

          The good thing is, if you don't like the looks of either of those, there are at least half a dozen other options within a 2-3 block area of there.

          1. re: gmm

            Exactly, the area is a nice lil' village ! We usually stick to hanging out in Fremont and U District, and visit our friends in Renton from time to time. Now that they've moved further south to the Columbia Gorge, we haven't gone over to the east side for a long while.

            PS: has 520 floating bridge started tolling yet ? Do out-of-state folks (ie: BC) get tolled ?

            1. re: LotusRapper

              yes. you'll have to pay, even if you're from bc. also, check for closures; between marine traffic and construction, there've been a lot of closures/scheduled delays lately.

              you can take other routes to avoid tolls, but lots of other people have the same genius idea, so traffic is kind of a nightmare.

              1. re: chartreauxx

                OK thx. I'll just come down via 405 then.

                1. re: LotusRapper

                  I'd do the 405 route too, Lotus. Toll on the 520 at rush hour is $5.13. The 520 has become a road for the wealthy living in Medina, Clyde Hill, Hunts Point. You can get to Kirkland quite nicely without paying the State of Washington's unreasonable "tariff".

                  1. re: firecracker

                    Got it :-)

                    Well, your 9.5% total sales tax (King Co.) is still much more palatable than our 12% harmonized sales tax :-/

      2. We arrived around 3:30, with just enough time to do some walking around and checking out the stores. Had a reservation at 2 Twelve for 5pm. Pleasantly surprised to see they have happy hour even on the weekend, so we kind of took advantage of that and since we could only stay until 6:30pm before heading over to our music event in Redmond. We had these appies/tapas:

        - cauliflower gratin
        - pulled-pork sliders
        - tomato & basil soup
        - caesar salad
        - caprese flatbread
        - thai curry mussels ($15) - only one not part of happy hour specials.

        We under-estimated the portion size that would be for each item, and ended up with way more food than we could manage. The highlights were the mussels (likely not "fresh" fresh but ok, and the curry lemongrass broth was spot on) the soup and the sliders. The fail item was the caesar salad. But considering every item was $4 or $5 and all came fast and well-presented, no complaints there. After paying the check they also gave us a $10-off coupon for our next visit.

        Thanks for the recommendation, despite it not being a foodie destination, the venue worked out perfectly for our afternoon/evening and we wouldn't have done it differently.

        2 Replies
        1. re: LotusRapper

          Thanks for your review, Lotus! Would you go back to the resto?

          1. re: firecracker

            Yes I would for sure. But not for any "formal" occasions as such. And one reason is, all their tables and chairs are of the raised, bar-style kind, and that caught me off-guard when we walked in the front door and I thought we were just the bar or lounge section, with the "dining room" in the adjacent section. In fact all their tables/chairs are raised height, which to me lends the whole place with a casual-ness atmosphere. Not a criticism, just a personal observation and preference.