Thursday, May 15, 2008

get out of here

where does one go in our fair seattle for some outdoor eating AND on the happiest of hours, happy hour? i am not sure but tomorrow i am going to either try marjorie or potentially somewhere else new so this is a preview of sorts?! i mean, i just think eating outdoors is quite simply underrated in so much that people here in seattle just assume we are supposed to eat indoors and thereby there are not a lot of great places to eat outside...thank you grey weather. and i hate to bitch and moan about this very issue but since everybody (even people who don't live here) are talking about the prognosticated 80+ degree weather - i want to eat on a damn patio and the food better be good! do i sound angry? i am not - just frustrated in that there are so few choices. i like marjorie and although there is no view (bfd), i am happily going to report on them or anywhere i may land tomorrow - that day known as friday.

good times people.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

bowling me over

you know what i love about my food blog? other peoples food blogs!! so, the time has come to blog about another blog... the weirdos at msg150. if you are in my fair city of seattle you might have heard about these guys as they are attempting (or better, are) eating at every place in our international district aka chinatown. i prefer chinatown only due to the million chinese places and uh, last time i checked, ain't nobody selling me a schwarma, an eggplant parm or any district, grrrr! back to the msg150 group, they rule. this is the kind of food writing i love largely due to the idea and execution is insane. i love the fact they are already burned out on chinese (duh) and that mostly the food is good and not that outstanding. they love the schezuan noodle bowl and that makes me happy because i do too. the picture above just makes me salvate like pavlov's, good reading for you and yours when you check out these guys adventures. good eating to all.

Monday, May 12, 2008

rhymes with feather

this weekend the seattle art museum was throwing down a 36 hour marathon to promote a show on its way out and it gave me an excuse to go there at some weird hour - read, after midnight, to check it out. yet to get this weekend started, i went there on friday to TASTE, the nice little place to eat at the museum, at 4:00 to check out the happiest of hours and get my snack on. i had some cioppino which during the happy hours of 3:00 - 6:00 is a mere $5.00! this is a modest serving with a couple clams, a mussel, some salmon and a bit too sweet for me but tasty tomato broth. oh yeah, it made me hungry so i ordered to sliders. i refuse to call them mini burgers because that just sounds too precious. these were awesome - juicy, and toasted buns along with melted gouda, some nice relish and pickled jalepenos! nice! these burgers are just great!!! i talk with ms. mvc and she throws down a pass to the museum for above mentioned marathon so lo and behold, i am there after midnight on saturday...where i got this ice cream sandwich. a double shot of espresso (decaf people) and two chocolate chip cookies with some vanilla ice cream...a great way to just fall apart with a midnight snack. good times. eating at museums can be pretty touchy - er, downright bad but the folks at SAM got it going on. easily one of the best happy hours in town and get this ice cream sammich!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

not veggies

but vij's.

if you have ever visited vancouver, bc and have never been to vij's - then you are really seriously missing not only thee (in my not-so-humble opinion) best indian joints to dine at (and yes, i am including london and nyc) but one of the finer places to eat hands down. i would say the place is perfect but alas, they do not take reservations and i am starting to really hate, wait - i hate that. and i too can write endlessly about this much admired resturant but instead i think this article by owner/chef vikram vij from the globe and mail is outstanding. here is another reason to love this guy...

ah hell, i have to include one photo of vij's stellar lamb popsicles dish. mmmm, mmmm, this is what it is all about.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

boy meets grill

i got a new neighbor...well, kind of. f.f. just purchased a place in beacon hill (1.7 miles away) and she had me over recently to show off her new digs. she used to live in fremont (ugh - and one of the worst neighborhoods in seattle to eat at)so beacon hill is unchartered territory for this chick...and man she loves two things: eating and dancing. i like eating so she asks where? the first place i think of is el asadero on rainer blvd. this is the taco BUS not truck that makes some of the best carnitas outside of and this place is totally inexpensive too! $1.00 tacos and even better $1.50 mulitas (hello kak!) which are kinda a mexican pupusa but not really. a mulita is two corn tortillas stuffed with the meat of your choice, avocado slices and some jack cheese...grilled!!! these things are incredible - just perfection. everything at el asadero is outstanding but why eat burritos when you can have a torta (hello bksmag!) which seems to be tastier with every visit. this is the place to eat on rainer...and as you can see from my photo, the only thing left is an empty plate. this place is no secret either - everybody and their grandmother goes here and for good reason, the place rocks.

oh yeah, we went and got sushi at maneki that night. jean-san took great care of ff and i - we had an exceptional time. next stop, el asadero!! vamanos!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

not a diner and not a steal but damn good

so in writing about a place to eat i find that after one visit can be enough yet after a couple - i then feel as though i can put both feet down and write something a bit more complete. steelhead diner fits this criteria. what pushed me here was last weeks sunday LA times article and i was just there a week back. my two other previous visits i liked this place - and i liked it a lot yet there was something nagging about this place. i think it was because it is called a diner and it ain't no diner but that is really dumb. so maybe it was because i thought the food was great but it seemed to lack something...yet i could not put my finger on that (more on that later). whatever the reason - here is my assessment from three visits - - last one first. a week back frank and i were starving and she had to eat something "bad" and when she says bad, that means gravy or chicken fried steak or something to that caloric/arterial death defying meal. we were downtown, half awake and ready...we ended up at the steelhead diner and good thing. we ordered family style and got a house salad which was iceburg lettuce, bacon, blue cheese, boiled egg, red onion and lorenzo dressing. a shitload of dressing - too much as i want to taste my bacon!! still it was tasty and fullfilled "bad" desires. next up, fried chicken sammich with fries but we went the gravy route and got poutine (!!) as written about below. the sammich was great, white meat cooked perfectly, hot and with slaw - tasty. the poutine was not as exciting missing a serious bite that i like with poutine and frank said she would have liked the fries too - good point. we got some desert in the form of rhubarb cobbler with vanilla ice cream...perfection. we napped after this meal but wait, i said i was going to write about a couple other times i went there - what about the caviar pie? what about the crab cakes? the meal i detailed above was the lesser of the three visits as the caviar pie and the crab cakes as well as the pork sandwich and the black cod i had there before were pretty close to perfect. does a place go up or down after being open an extended period of time is a case by case study but i will give them another try as my family is visiting this week and god knows, they read that damn LA times article.

Monday, April 28, 2008

PBC pt. II

people love their breakfast out in our fair emerald city. i'd be hard pressed to say i have a favorite however that is enough pressure for me to say my favorite for the past couple years + is the portage bay cafe. and a funny place in that people i trust their food opinions think it is merely ok to downright bad to other folks who say it is a godsend - truly fantastic! the place is wildly popular - every single saturday and sunday morning it is crowded and a wait is going to happen. i have my favorites here including some greek style omelette with spinach, bacon (and damn good bacon too), myzithra cheese and some basil pistou on top. another favorite is the black bean pancetta cake with two poached eggs...good potatoes too. the many people who are big sweet fans go back for the pancakes, french toast and daily specials so that they can go to the breakfast bar which is basically, dress up your sweet morning treat with a variety of berries, nuts and god only knows what...about four years back i was there with my pal FAH and she ordered something sweet which we shared...and they had marcona almonds...which i later learned was a mistake to have those out instead of the regular california almonds. oh well. anywho, i am writing about the portage bay cafe as they are about to launch their second location in the south lake union locale. i went to the opening party last friday night and they snagged a great location and an even better look inside! following suit with so many other places as of late, they will have a community table and lots of space. no matter this place will be nuts like the original on roosevelt.

great news too...the menu remains the same and that means they will probably loosen up some of the flow from the original location. so, whether you like the portage bay cafe or not - i think this will be a great addition to the neighborhood that also houses my gym. oh the irony!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


so you think whole foods is expensive? it is. and i think so too but i think they are a great supermarket in that they have an exceptional selection of fish and meat, the vegetables are usually very good (although i'd rather shop at one of our many farmers markets) and pretty much everything else is darn good. yet, i rarely go there...they do have some decent pate and a great cheese selection but still, too damn expensive! so i go all over the place - to uwajimaya, i go to mcpherson's fruitatorium/vegetaria and i also go to the ballard market near my office. i will go as far as saying if they had an even better cheese selection and a charcueterie - this would be one stop shopping for me. nonetheless, it is better than whole foods solely because it is a locally owned place, every employee i have spoke with say they get treated very well, they make a damn good sandwich (try the grilled ruben) and all my drinking pals say the wine and beer selection is top shelf all the way!! but be warned as it is not inexpensive however it is less expensive than whole foods and a lot easier on the conscious than *shudder* safeway or qfc. frankly i like going all over the place for foods, hell, i go to the leschi market for bacon and sausage (it rules! best bacon in town!) but seattle, you have an exceptional, locally owned store!! GO!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

skilled with a T

blah blah blah. everybody has suggestions on where to eat. i am relentless with my suggestions and furthermore, i am not sure why i bother to listen to anybody as i seem to dig out places without barely looking. case in point, skillet. have you heard about these folks? sure you have...first - you get an airstream trailer, you go to different locations, you get busted by the health dept., make great food - yup, pretty damn good food too. after a rather important meeting this morning, i went to skillet as they parked in ballard for i had to get me an egg sammy for breakfast. decadent and gooey, this was tasty my friends! crazy texan sweet bread toasted encased with two fried eggs (over easy), some pork and a chili sauce that was not smokey nor too hot but tasty all the way. good. wait, great and maybe a bit much for later i am there four hours later with kak and she orders not only a pulled lemongrass pork sandwich with fries - she orders the damn poutine! i am not even hungry from my late breakfast and yet, i dive into the poutine...thank god we are near a hospital!what is poutine? only the most trendiest of dishes currently here in seattle. quinn's serves it - so do a couple other places and hey, fine with me because it is decadent, delicious and rather weird. i like the name too! so, back to the trailer park food - good times and not a secret by any stretch - there were about fifteen or so people there for lunch! find them, go and rejoice because finally, seattle has street food!!! and it is good. really good.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

a little bird told me...

can it be i can be tempted to come back and write some more? sure sure but for pal and tourguide deluxe angela decided to have lunch. er, we went back to txori (read below) and i loved it all over again. so, get ye, i post about something so random, it might be the first of many or the final snacktruck entry.

Txori Bar in Seattle

Friday, February 8, 2008

birdy num num

night before last, jenO and i went to check out txori here in our fair city. this is the new basque tapas/pintxos joint opened by the nice folks at harvest vine (another snacktruck fave!!). very close to the aforementioned tavolata on second ave. in belltown, txori can almost be missed if one is not looking carefully - case in point, jen and i drove by it 2x (she is an awful naviagtor). anywho, i want to say right from the get go i did not take any photos...because i left my camera at home and damn it, in a place this bright the pix would have been nice but i am going to try and let my words explain. attento!

txori is lovely - a fantastic addition solely on the appearance. the entire feeling here is welcoming and warm, i felt as though i was in a place where one could be there for hours and not feel any pressure to do anything other than to enjoy yourself. jen and i both looked at the menu, then the specials on the board which i explained to her as my spanish is always working when it comes to food and it was on. we see calamares en su tinta - stuffed squid cooked in its own ink - uh huh, bring it! , then jen ordered some white anchovy stuffed with tuna...i see two different bocadillo's, chorizo and the other is ham - bring both. we ordered some duck confit served on asian soup you ask, how was all of this - PHENOMENAL. made with ease and complete flavor overload - - everything we ordered was fantastic. i decided to order something for myself since jen will only eat eggs from fish and not from birds and i ordered jamon y huevo - simply translated to ham and egg. the chef told me they get some (how much, i dare say just a bit)iberico ham and make rilletes out it...then, they bake an egg in one of those funny looking extra small frying pans and voila, place the rilletes on bread, place the the egg on top - runny yoke and all - - you got yourself something so tasty i thought i was on a farm. ridiculous and sublime simultaneously, so damn good. instead of ordering another one of those, we ordered more squid - another tasty tomato dish which was simply tomato sauce, fried garlic and spanish cheese (tetilla). simple, yet very flavorful. both of us love octopus yet we did not order it nor did we venture and try the albondigas (meatballs) but uh, there is always next time and that next time will be sooner than later. great stuff here!!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

you can please yourself but somebody's gonna get it


good pal jenny over at yardsale bloodbath along with her wonderful husband tim joined me, my gal pal heather "the feather" and some other folks at cache for christmas dinner. i would have wrote about it but i asked jenny to do so. i like guest starring at her blog so damn it, she can at mine - thanks JENNY!...oh, and no photos of the food because heather was too busy getting drunk. touche! but the photo i posted!? that is from a different cache dinner - so there!

So, I promised your trusty snacktruck host that I'd write about our not-so recent visit to Cache. My husband and I had been listening to him hype it up for a while, getting more and more intrigued ... then when we took a look at their "Christmas at Cache" menu we knew that now was the time to make it happen. We arrived at Cache a few minutes after 7:00, worried about being late,but it turned out we were the first ones there. Our hosts greeted us warmly and led us to their lounge area, where we snacked on pork rillettes (with duck fat!) on toasted baguette and bits of spicy chorizo ... which were promptly accompanied by two martini glasses full of the frothiest yummiest eggnog ever. Two more diners trickled in, then two more, and we all sat around making feeble attempts at small talk until we had a full house of 14 diners. At that point we all filed along to the dinner table where we were served glasses of champagne along with a tasty and refreshing salad of arugula, persimmon, pomegranate seeds and pecans - a nice precursor to the onslaught of amazingly tasty dishes that didn't sit quite so lightly on the tummy. Bourbon-pecan mashed sweet potatoes were served alongside a mushroom-gruyere bread pudding that pretty much blew all of our minds. Next up was the main event, the "7-hour herbed roast leg of lamb," which was to die for ... so tender and incredibly flavorful without being overly "lamby" (know what I mean?). Next up were brussel sprouts cooked with plenty of tasty bacon. I actually like brussel sprouts in almost any preparation, but I think this would have pleased even the staunchest veggie-hater. The feast was all accompanied by various wines, both house-provided (such as a sparkling shiraz which was like a red champagne ... good lord, I never knew such wonders existed!) and those brought in by our fellow diners (including our contribution brought from a recent visit to the Clos Pegase winery in Napa Valley, which I was all excited about, but then turned out to be just OK).Dessert ... first some incredible homemade gingersnaps, then a dessert that I loved, loved, loved: individual English toffee cheesecakes with a tiny smattering of Maldon sea salt on top. This was somewhat tragic, because I was just TOO FULL to do it justice. If you know me, you know I love my sweets, and I really wanted to eat it all up, but I just could not do it. Surprise bonus warm chocolate cookies just added insult to injury, but from the few bites I had, I can assure you that the insult was quite delicious. All in all, it was a fun experience with a bountiful array of food that really would have been amazing and delightful under any circumstances whatsoever ... getting to eat it in a unique and clandestine setting with interesting people was bonus fun!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

repetition is ok, isn't it ok?

i have a love hate affair with chicken. when i make it for myself, i love it and for that matter, when someone makes it for me, i love it all over again. when i am dining out, ordering is near impossible as it usually is not good, overpriced or just stupid (it's chicken damn it!). but when i am in l.a. this week, i plan on ordering chicken...oh yes and this is where, VERSAILLES!!! great god above - this is the famous garlic chicken and it is as good as it gets. man oh man, this place is great and no secret to angelinos. i want to try new places but why when food is that good and you are there for only five days? which means i am going ot in-n-out burger and if i am lucky, maybe a visit to el tepeyac and really crank up the cardiac arrest...i guess if that was the goal i'd go to roscoe's too but i digress. why eat healthy while in l.a.? but back to the bird for a moment as i am seriously going to consider the other outstanding chicken in soCal, (i wouldn't do you like that) zankou chicken. for real. i am off to oc/la tomorrow and will report back on my findings or revisits when i get back.

until then, here's a distraction for you - chick this out.

Friday, January 4, 2008

paseo the peas

talking about food is another element that makes eating a great experience. everybody's got opinions and god knows i am not in the least bit shy to share mine. it wasn't too long ago i was asking my pal bksmag what his fave sandwich in seattle is (i actually value his opinion knowing he can easily make the best sandwich in town) and he threw down an entry. mind you that was months ago and just recently another pal h.LO asked me about the best sandwich in town - - - i see a theme...and we all came to the same conclusion...! behold the paseo cuban pork sandwich

this is the hands down winner. both h.LO and i were going on and on about the greatness of this thing. so sorry about the size of this picture as this sandwich deserves so much more...this is not an enormous sandwich, it is big for sure but the tastes are pitch perfect. pork that is grilled and has the flavor of char and maintains the simple pork taste along with carmelized onions, aioli, pickled jalepenos, crunchy romaine lettuce on the right baguette which is both hard and soft - this is thee seattle sandwich. and paseo gives you a little cobette of corn too! oh - did i mention the price at a mere $7.50, this sandwich gets better and better with every visit. what must be mentioned about paseo is that nearly everything else they make is quite good. small, crowded, cash only and a bit nutty, get yourself over here and enjoy.

paseo 4225 fremont ave n. 206-545-7440

Thursday, January 3, 2008

2 0 0 7 etc.

ah, the year has come to an end and i thought, why not do a year end type reflection on what snacktruck enountered this year...hmmm. at the beginning of the year (and i mean exactly on jan. 1) i had my finger on exactly what i wanted to eat this year yet i seemed to have lost touch with that. what happened here? i can only reflect on this and come to the conclusion that i got very excited with the 'concepts and potential' of what the year would bring only to know have the hindsight that what i thought i wanted was just merely a hope - not even close to reality. i wanted healthy, vibrant, alive and challenging nourishment and i got some, but not exactly what i wanted. this is not to say i did not have a fun year eating some other things which were tasty and a lot of fun...i did. behold my year of some new, some old and some rediscovered.

that picture above is of tavolata. my first visit brought me there on super bowl sunday and had an exceptional meal consisting of the insanely large t-bone steak with cippoline onions, a sublime gnocci and a standard yet fresh green salad. after going back here and there and having many a good pasta and perfectly grilled tuna, tavolata become one of my favorite places to eat in 07. another place that hit the target this year was the jolly roger at the maritime brewery. anybody who knows me understands my love of this place and i must say i think it is getting better and better. just last week i went there with two people who know the difference between good and great food and we all left feeling as though we experienced one of the finer lunches in seattle! details unnecessary as i will say this, anything ANYTHING you get there will work. whether it be bar food or one of the incredible dinner specials chef dave miller is making - this is one of seattle's unsung places to eat...if you know anybody who has been here - they know. another standout is green leaf in the ID. i love vietnamese food and this place shines like few others in seattle. a month back i was there with three other friends and we ordered bun rice vermicelli, pho, ban xeo
(crepe), fresh rolls and damn it if everything was simply out of this world.

yet, 2007 belonged to not a certain place in seattle and not really even seattle but pdx. i went to portland a lot this year to see what exactly is going on down there...and i came back with many great dining experiences and get this, i have a ton more to try. biggies were le pidgeon, simpatica catering and some taqueria in the alberta neighborhood. what is funny is that i will be back there in a couple weeks! enough of my ranting and raving - i am going to be lazy and ask you to check out this nytimes article on what the hell is happening in the rose city.

back to seattle and hats off to our fair city with lots of new places which were quite good like beato, decent like barolo, some a bit too precious for my taste like tilth and others just plain nutty, coupage - which i liked. next up, i am going to find myself at quinns, how to cook a wolf and txori. reporting later.

feliz ano nuevo amigos!