Showing posts with label washington. Show all posts
Showing posts with label washington. Show all posts

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Chef Jose Andres' Barmini (Washington, DC)

BarminiChef Jose Andres not only has a group of some of the best restaurants in Washington, DC, but also one of the best cocktail bars in the city. Barmini is a small, beautiful bar right next to Minibar. You have to be seated and most of it is reservation-only but they do allow walk-ins if there are seats available.

The drinks here are more expensive than usual, but everyone that comes in gets a free welcome cocktail. The night I was there, the welcome drink was a 19th Century Cocktail: bourbon, lemon, creme de cacao, lillet rouge
There are quirky details that I love here, like this suspended chair, and other things you'd see later.

The cocktail menu is vast, and I had a hard time choosing between so many promising options. The bartender was recommending classic drinks, which I'm sure are excellent here, but at Barmini I wanted to try out the more unusual things. I've done the cotton candy and olive sphere and liquid nitrogen drinks at Bazaar in LA, so I ended up going with the Veruka Salt (peanut infused rum, pineapple grog, crumbled salted peanuts - $15)

Friday, December 28, 2012

Willows Inn (Lummi Island, WA): An Unforgettable Experience

My favorite meal in 2012? Easy. Willows Inn at Lummi Island is a small inn on a small island in Washington, with a restaurant helmed by Chef Blaine Wetzel, a young native of the area who had worked at Noma (you know, the world's best restaurant). When they talk about local ingredients, they really mean it. It isn't just produce from the state, but really local. Chef Wetzel forages around the island. A lot of the fish used are caught in the waters around the island, just five minutes from the restaurant.

Willows Inn is a 2-hour drive from Seattle plus a 10 minute ferry ride, and it's not only worth it but the journey adds to the experience.

There's only one seating every night which is at 6:30. The ferry only runs every hour and we didn't want to be late, so we took the 5PM ferry and ended up with time on our hands when we got to Willows Inn. Time to sit on the patio staring into the sunset while sipping cocktails. The cocktails here had quite a few interesting ingredients. I loved the Pacific Gin Fizz (gin, wild pineapple weed, egg white - $14)

What is wild pineapple weed, you ask? I didn't know it then but apparently it's wild chamomile. Whatever it was, it was my favorite out of the cocktails we tried. We also had time to peek into the kitchen as they were prepping.

Finally we got called and seated in the small dining room.
The dinner is "five courses" with a lot of "snacks", which meant way more food than five courses. Our meal started with a small wooden box.

As you open the treasure box: a whiff of smoke, and baked sunflower root

Next is a Crispy crepe with salmon roe, sandwiched between green onions. The crepe was a thin crisped salmon that held everything in a perfect bite-sized morsel.

Pickled oyster with sorrel was beautifully presented on a bowl of rocks

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Ultimate Roast Pork Sandwich at Paseo (Seattle, WA)

Before we went to Seattle, we did quite a bit of research on where to go eat, but of course there are still a few places that the locals love and we don't know about. Lucky for us, the chef at Mistral Kitchen was a Seattle native (who worked in Long Beach prior to Mistral Kitchen) told us about the place he takes every visitor to: Paseo Caribbean. So, the next afternoon, we searched for the tiny shack that is Paseo (well, they actually have a couple of locations, we went for the closest to us on Fremont).

There was no big sign, but we could just tell that the little red shack with the line outside the door was the place.

We were told to get the #2 sandwich here, which was also starred on the menu with the note "Most Popular" next to it. It's this succulent, slow roasted pork shoulder in their special "Paseo" marinade on toasted baguette with cilantro, caramelized onions, pickled jalapenos, romaine lettuce. It's this amazing, amazing sandwich.

Caribbean Roast Sandwich
The $8.50 sandwich was huge, but at the end we all regretted sharing, just a little ... even if we have another lunch stop coming at Shuckers. (As an aside, the plastic Chinese plates and bowls are pretty funny..)

We're so glad to have found out about Paseo right before we had to go back to LA. I'm definitely coming back here next time I go to Seattle! This one's a must visit.

4225 Fremont Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 545-7440
 Paseo on Urbanspoon

Friday, November 30, 2012

Foie Gras Fantasy Comes True at Mistral Kitchen (Seattle, WA)

It was our last night in Seattle, and it dawned on me that I had not had foie gras while eating my way in another state! I suddenly started craving it and convinced everyone else to go eat foie with me. Our Seattleite friend suggested Mistral Kitchen. Seeing they had seared foie gras on the menu and the fact that it was nearby we decided on it.

We originally just wanted to come here for some foie and drinks and ordered some Seared Foie Gras to share ($19)

Seared Foie Gras

We haven't had it in so long and the seared foie was so good! We also had to get the Foie Gras Torchon, black mission fig balsamic compote ($15)

We were pretty hungry by this point and since both the foie gras dishes were really good, we decided to eat dinner here after all. At this point I was going to order the lamb loin. We were sitting at the bar and I joked to the bartender that it would be awesome if they could put the seared foie on the lamb. Our bartender said that sure we can! They make dreams come true here!
Woah. So we customized our own dish.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Seattle, WA - Restaurant Reviews

Mistral Kitchen
Paseo Caribbean
Shuckers Oyster Bar
Sitka & Spruce
Willows Inn

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