West Coast Adventures: Seattle

September 8, 2010 § Leave a comment

In July, Rupert and I set out on an ambitious tour de force of the West Coast. While on future trips I could spend days or even weeks in some of these spots, our goal on this trip was to explore several cities and determine which would be worthy of extended return visits (or even possible inhabitation) in the future. The trip was fantastic – 6 cities, 5 hotels, 2 marathon bike rides and LOTS of incredible food and wine over the course of 9 days. While I could go on and on, I’ll stick to the highlights and do a series of posts featuring the best of each destination. Up first, Seattle!

I come from a family that considers where we eat to be the first and most important aspect to planning almost any vacation. I’ve carried this tradition on and luckily Rupert embraces the same philosophy. This trip was no exception and in addition to the recommendations of friends & industry folks, I turned to Food & Wine and Travel + Leisure for inspiration. These sources served us well, to say the least!

Cascina Spinasse
Food & Wine honored Jason Stratton as a Best New Chef in 2010, and in my mind, this is the only endorsement I need to know a restaurant merits a visit. The chef’s counter seating that peers into a relatively open farmhouse style kitchen makes the meal even more of an experience. Everything from the antipasti misto della casa to the pastas we shared was delightful and demonstrated a classic but refined style of cooking.

Piroshky Piroshky

When we stumbled upon Piroshky Piroshky while browsing the Pike Place Market on our first morning in town, the line alone made it evident that we had found our breakfast. After about 2o minutes, we made it up to the Russian bakery’s case of decadent sweet and savory selections. My sweet tooth (and aforementioned poppy seed obsession) lead me straight to the Poppy Seed Raisin Roll, and Rupert as usual went the savory route with a Spinach Egg & Cheese Piroshky. Both were incredibly fresh and delicious. Later that day, the Cheese Onion Garlic roll we took to go was a indulgent afternoon snack.

Beer Festival
It was by luck that we stumbled upon the Seattle & Potland Beer Festival, or rather spotted it when staring down from the Space Needle viewing deck. It was a perfect way to spend a warm summer day – beer, gourmet hotdogs, and bluegrass music. Proceeds benefited Pet Cross, so pups of all sizes were out in numbers making for some great dog watching. The vast selection of beers was overwhelming, but after several tastings my favorite remained the La Folie from New Belgium. This sour ale was almost sherry-like and different than any beer I’ve had. As an aside, Fat Tire is my favorite beer of all time and I am constantly saddened by the fact that it is not yet distributed in New York. (Hint hint, New Belgium!) This almost marked my first time trying cream cheese on a hot dog (is this a regional thing?), and I have to say I am a fan.

Finally, I’ll leave you with a few gratuitous Pike Place Market shots. Stay tuned for the next installment: Portland!


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