Come away with Seatown!

I was happy to learn that Lacey would be joining me and Jenny for our first voyage to Seatown! First and foremost, I like the neighborhood where Seatown is situated. Belltown/Pike Place is hip and trendy, very fun and festive! It’s a good neighborhood whether you are a visitor to Seattle or a resident! I like it quite a lot. So I got to Seatown and lovely Lacey was waiting at a table on the patio. It was a cool, crisp September day and I was famished!

...moments later my blogging partner J Kor arrived and joined us. The three of us decided to get a half liter of Pinot Noir to split between the three of us. It was a good size glass for each of us, and more cost effective than each of us ordering a glass of wine.

Then, the real fun came, selecting our entrées! I decided to go with the Wednesday night special (as it was a very special Wednesday night) I ordered the rotisserie five spice duck! Ahhhhh yum!!! That just sounds good! While we waited for our food we discussed a broad range of topics from hilarious recaps of recent social gatherings to why the European tourists at the table not to far from us weren’t conversing with each other, but instead intently listening to our conversation. All very fascinating! Indeed! I'm educationally trained in sociology and communication, so this was most humorous to me..."people-watching" is so interesting! 

Not a moment too soon our food arrived! I was pleasantly surprised with the very generous amont of duck upon my plate – almost too much, but there is no such thing as TOO much duck! (This made me briefly internally reminisce to my very first time having duck. I was seven years old. My parents took me to their friends’ house for dinner and I am pretty sure the duck was freshly caught and cooked. Okay, that’s enough waxing nostalgic.) My five spice duck was tasty, for the most part. It was moist and atop a bed of shredded cabbage with a puréed butternut squash sauce on the side, and topped with seasoned thinly sliced cucumbers. The presentation alone earned two kudos in my (cook) book!

Nearly every bite was filled with a powerhouse of flavors and spice! So much so that I insisted that my dinner companions taste this most enjoyable dish! There were some parts near the center/bone that were a bit dryer and less flavorful. But I had had so much by that point that I was pretty much ducked out for the evening. All said and done it was $33 (with tip) well spent! Oh how I love a new restaurant and a delicious dish!

We decided to forgo the tempting Seatown dessert menu and walked the three blocks to Molly Moon’s for a familiar treat! I got a kid's cone that night as I was nearly stuffed to capacity already!

Thank for reading! Lacey – thanks for joining us!! Jenny and I will be at Cuoco on Sunday evening for dinner! Join us if you can! 

Serious Pie (Guest blog by Aubrey Mathwig)

Last night I visited Serious Pie for the first time.  Last year for my husband’s birthday I attempted to take him to the Serious Pie Downtown and it was a disaster.  It was a Saturday night; we made our way downtown and spent over 45 minutes looking for parking.  After finally finding a spot a few blocks away we made a chilly walk to SP and were told that the wait was 3 hours.  As much as we had been looking forward to that oh-so-famous apple wood fired pizza, we were not going to wait 3 hours to eat.

So this time around we were happy to see that the Westlake location had easier parking, and was less busy than the downtown location.  Granted, we went on a Wednesday night right after work, but I am still quite sure that we had an easier time navigating to, parking at, and being seated than we would have had we visited the downtown location. 
First off, the service was great.  The waiter was pleasant, knowledgeable and was attentive without being annoying.  He came around when we were low on drinks, checked to make sure the food was good a few minutes after we got it and was quick to get us the check when we seemed to be wrapping things up. 
The food was also pretty fantastic.  We got two pizzas, the roasted crimini mushroom and truffle cheese, plus the penn cove clam, pancetta, and lemon thyme.  They also have a soft egg, spicy coppa and mustard greens pizza that I will be trying next time I’m able to go.  Both pizzas we tried were pretty fantastic, especially the clam, pancetta and lemon thyme.  The crust was amazing- I want their recipe!  It was just a touch sweet, puffed up nicely, and was soft and moist on the inside, while still crispy on the outside.  I also got a pilsner which was a nice accompaniment to the pizzas.
All told, my husband and I spent $48.40 before tip, $57.40 after, which bought us two pizzas, a diet coke and a beer.  The food was great, but a bit on the pricey side.  Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t go in under the impression that the pizza would be cheap, but I did expect a little more bang for my buck.  This place will definitely stay on my list of great restaurants, but I won’t be dining their casually. 
Written by: Aubrey Mathwig -

Seatown: nickname for Seattle used in a Sir Mix-a-Lot song

Keisha and I love food. And wine. Why yes, those are the reasons why we started this food blog. And starting with Tom Douglas restaurants was the perfect choice in our foodie adventures. After our 4th TD restaurant, something I've noticed is that they are clustered together: Serious Pie Westlake & Dahlia Workshop; Dahlia Lounge & Dahlia Bakery; and where we recently dined: Seatown & Etta's.

After tax + tip, I paid  $30 for my crab dungeness BLT and a glass of pinot noir.

For this dining experience, our friend Lacey joined us and the three of us gals dined outside on their patio for a fabulous dinner, with the Seattle sunset and waterfront as our backdrop.

Here's my take on my crab dungeness BLT:

Do I like crab meat? Yes.
Do I like bacon? Heck yes.
Do I like lettuce & tomato? Yes, especially grilled lettuce and heirloom tomatoes. This sandwich didn't have grilled lettuce (it was fresh) but I did like my heirloom tomato slice.
Do I like bread? Oh my goodenss, yes!

So to summarize, Yes! I liked my sandwich. I had never had crab meat in a BLT before but it was a natural pairing. The sandwich came with a boring salad on the side of just greens and a vinaigrette, reinforcing that the hero of the meal was definitely the sandwich. And if you're a red wine drinker, I don't even have to tell you that the pinot noir was fantastic! It's pinot noir. It naturally is a superstar.

Even though the dessert menu was oh-so-tempting, we decided to wait to walk the couple blocks to Molly Moon's. What is Molly Moon's? It's only the best Seattle ice cream I've had! I frequent Molly Moon's whenever I feel my sweet tooth kick in, as it did that evening. I helped myself to a waffle cone filled with Theo chocolate & maple walnut ice cream deliciousness, and to borrow the words of my blog partner, it did not disappoint!

Another wonderful meal, dessert and conversation. Up next: dinner @ Cuoco on Sunday, October 2.

An aside: Dahlia Bakery

Fancy Cupcake anyone?! You know you want one! Right after our awesome brunch at Dahlia Lounge Jenny and I ventured next door to Dahlia Bakery. Jenny bought two fancy cupcakes (that's really what they're called on the menu) for friends of hers. So kind of her. I purchased one cupcake – to enjoy post college prep presentation in Tacoma. 

A sweet treat! Topped with butter cream frosting, it was small, 3-4 bites, which is the right size for dessert and sugar intake. It also came in a cute little to-go box. Jenny and I will have to revisit Dahlia Bakery again one day. Then, we'll take a nice long walk around Belltown and Pike Place to walk it off! 

Brunch at Dahlia Lounge :)

I love dinner! I love wine! I love dessert! But Lord help me, I love BREAKFAST!  Especially when it’s warm and delicious! And Dahlia Lounge did not disappoint. I arrived at Dahlia Lounge around 10:30 this past Saturday morning, sporting my fall sweater dress, tights and boots – why? Because I have accepted that “summer” is over. Sad, but true!

Anywho...I arrive around 10:45am, excited and ready to get some delicious food! Jenny was running a few minutes behind so I ordered our dishes to share (since I had a college prep presentation in Tacoma to get to), and coffees for each of us. After a few minutes of conversation our food arrive promptly! The order – ummm – let me start by saying I LOVE Eggs Benedict! It is my breakfast/brunch dish of choice. One day I will make and master this dish at home. When I saw it one the Dahlia Lounge menu I knew, that was the choice for me! The house cured ham atop a English muffin, two nicely poached eggs, topped with scallion hollandaise and baby arugula, I thought the mix of flavors was well thought out and prepared. Also, accompanying this order was some fantastically PHENOMENAL parmesan potatoes. I will be replicating those and jazzing them up with some peppers and spicy seasoning!

We also ordered the famous donuts off the Dahlia bakery menu. They were so cute! They came fresh from the bakery in a "to go" bag –say what! How cute?! Then the server shook them up and presented them in a dish, paired with the seasonal jam! They were delicious!! 

All in all this was a great brunch! From the coffee to the eggs to the donuts, it all went together well. And the cost wasn’t too bad. $17 as Jenny noted in her posting. I will definitely treat a friend to Dahlia’s Lounge for a birthday brunch! Is your birthday coming up? Message me! 

Dahlia Lounge, A Magical Brunch Location

Keisha and I decided to mix it up and have brunch, instead of dinner, for this Tom Douglas food outing.

$21 with tax and tip each. Split the famous donuts and eggs benedict and each got a coffee. Best breakfast potatoes, ever! And donuts that'll make you say "Mmmm" out loud!

The food and service were stellar. Our server made sure to keep the coffee refills coming and Keisha and I were both pleasantly surprised by how quickly the food was ready. The eggs benedict was good but I've fortunately had better. The bread was fresh and the egg was poached just right. The house cured ham could've had more flavor. And the accompanying Parmesan potatoes were hands down, the best breakfast potatoes I've ever had! Fried, cheesy and cooked to a light crisp on the outside, soft texture on the inside. As for the donuts, they were sinfully good! With vanilla mascarpone and peach jam I could've eaten 20 of them (but only ate 3).

The ambiance is romantic and lovely. We sat by the window on an overcast morning but still saw peaks of light. There's a mix of booths, tables and tables with a combo of booth and chair seating. Restaurant is designed in a burgundy dahlia theme, including exterior, menus and interior paintings. It's also right next to Dahlia Bakery. Street parking was easy to find for Saturday brunch and we were seated right away.

3 Tom Douglas restaurants down, 9 more to go! Yippee!

Serious Pie Packs a Seriously Delicious Punch!

Okay, honestly, I was pissed off when I met Jenny at Serious Pie (the South Lake Union location) why you ask? Two giant trucks from Seattle City Light were blocking the gate entry/exit from my apartment building and took their sweet time moving after I informed them this was the only entry/exit for this apartment building. Meanwhile six tenants were waiting to enter or exit. Not cool SCL!

I finally arrived at SP to meet Mrs. Kordell. I was relieved to dump my woes at the door and dig into some serious pie! And oh my, it is serious!! Prior to the pie, we both ordered a glass of the house wine –white for me, red for Jenny! The wine was instrumental in helping me to relax and come back to the enjoyment of food…

Oh the food! The first pie we ordered was the Sweet fennel sausage, roasted peppers, provolone – it was divine. Here’s my thing – in early 2010 I started doing all of this research about meat and decided to remove beef and pork from my diet for an extended period of time. I did this pretty solidly for a year and a half. In recent weeks when Jenny and I decided to do our food blog challenge I decided to be open to the menu options, not limit myself. So I enjoyed the sweet sausage with joy! Knowing it’s a menu option for me to be had in moderation, and not something I’d purchase and keep in my refrigerator! This pie was seriously seasoned and tasted like what a good pizza should be – slightly salty, cheesy, well prepared – with a temperature that was at perfection when it hit my lips! Conversation seized for a short snippet of time as J. Kor and I enjoyed our first serious pie order. We had to have another! 

Our Second pie: Penn cove clams, house pancetta, and lemon thyme. Okay, I know you are thinking – clams! But yes, original, different and delish! Serious Pie seriously stepped out of the box on this one! They did! This dish was delish! I was surprised and very pleased when the mix of cuisines hit my mouth, I will say that I preferred the sausage, but the clam pie has an extra chewiness that said “come challenge what you thought pizza should be and don’t be afraid when you enjoy it! Ha!” And I did! I came, the pies conquered my taste buds and I forgot all about those giant trucks that tried to keep me from some serious pie!
After dinner which took us for $30 each! We skipped their dessert menu and ventured down to 1stand Pike for our fave dessert – Molly Moon’s Ice Cream! As we enjoyed our delicious treats we walked about into Post Alley, checking potential restaurants to visit after our Tom Douglas challenge is complete!
Pizza + Ice cream + awesome company = a well spent Tuesday night!!

Serious (I want more) Pie

I love pizza: homemade, store bought, delivered and at a restaurant. I love it all.

At Serious Pie, Keisha and I each ordered a pizza and glass of house wine. Total with tax + tip was $30 per person.

I was excited to taste the difference between a regular pizza pie and a serious pizza pie. Besides the higher cost, would there be a difference?

Verdict: The pizzas were drool in your mouth good! But, left you wanting more pizza for your buck. The two pizzas we got were: 1. Sweet fennel sausage, roasted peppers, provolone 2. Penn cove clams, house pancetta, lemon thyme

Pizza #1
Pizza #2
The atmosphere was casual but could be romantic; lighting ranged from being under bright white lights to being tucked away in the shadows. There are tall wooden, communal tables with comfy high chairs with backs. We got there at 7p, and it was pretty packed by 8p. Our server was awesome and seemed to appear when we needed her - definitely more attentive service than Brave Horse Tavern. Street parking was easy to find and as you'd expect, this restaurant is in the same building as another TD restaurant, Dahlia Workshop, which we will be reviewing on Sunday, 9/25.

Overall it was such a tasty meal with intense buttery, olive oily pizza crust, fresh (fresh!) toppings and everything just melted in your mouth. Clams on a pizza is not as strange as I thought it would’ve been and the pancetta was just phenomenal. The sweet fennel sausage was not too greasy and paired with the semi-spicy peppers beautifully. Though the dessert menu was awfully tempting, we decided to head to the Downtown Molly Moon’s for ice cream. So now, Keisha and I have been to all three Molly Moon ice cream storefronts.

Pizza, wine, ice cream and great conversation. Thank you, Tom Douglas, Molly Neitzel, and my blogging friend in foodie crime, Keisha Jackson, for a wonderful summer evening!

The Beginning: Brave Horse Tavern

Here is where Keisha and my foodies' challenge begins.

We each ordered a burger and drink and shared fries and a dessert. Total each with tax + tip was $26.

Brave Horse Tavern (BHT) sits above another Tom D restaurant Cuoco and is next door to Ting Momo. It was packed on a Tuesday evening around 8pm and we sat ourselves near the bar, at a table tucked between the bar counter and two shuffleboard games.

Service was not prompt, but I think that's more a reflection on how busy the restaurant was and not the overall quality. When our server arrived, we were famished and ordered our food and drinks together. I knew I wanted to get a burger and wanted to know if it was the same as the Palace Kitchen (PK) burger. The PK burger, by the way, was the best burger I had ever had, to date.

The server did a great job of explaining how the PK and BHT burgers were different: PK is a ½ lb patty and the BHT is ¼ lb and served on softer bun. Also, the BHT meat patty cooked to same wellness to maximize taste. Whereas the PK burger comes with a pile of sliced onion, large slice of heirloom tomato and Beecher’s cheddar, I noticed the BHT burger comes with the bun, meat and sauce and you add your fixings for a $1. I ordered my BHT burger with onions, tomato and cheese.

Verdict: The PK burger wins out because it was…well, bigger! And bigger was definitely better in this case. But doesn’t mean that the burger wasn’t very tasty. Paired with Deschutes Brewery’s summer ale and salty skinny fries, my mouth was in food heaven. In the name of sharing is caring, Keisha and I split our burgers. Her half was the Dante’s inferno burger - turkey breast with a spicy rub and mango chutney, which was a healthy blend of spicy and sweet. I took a sip of her sangria that was unusually not sweet at all, but I liked and it offered a good alcoholic kick! For dessert, we ordered the cookie – freshly baked to order – and asked for it a la mode which wasn’t on the menu. It’s like the BJ’s pazookie dessert, which if you’ve had it, your mouth would be watering right now.

I’m glad we chose Brave House Tavern for our first Tom D restaurant to get things started right. Up next week is Serious Pie, which is rumored to be the best pizza in the Northwest. And if you’d like to join us, message me or Keisha and we will give you the date and time. Stay tuned for our next post!

Brave Horse Tavern - oh the yumminess!

On Tuesday, August 30 Jenny and I boldly ventured into Brave Horse Tavern (BHT) for the first time. The ambiance was causal and friendly. The sign at the front invited us to seat ourselves. BHT is the kind of place you could go after a long day and grab a beer (and I don’t drink beer, so I’d have a glass of wine or a cocktail) with your boss, or a friend or go on a date night! It was fun and the crowd was young, hip and attractive. We took seats at a high table with bar stools.

Let the menu examination begin – we both drooled (not literally) over the options, as we caught up on our weekends and upcoming social events. We decided to both get burgers and share an order of fries.

My burger – the burger of the week – Dante’s “Inferno” Burger! Watch out now! Jamaican jerked turkey breast, jalapeño aioli, pickled red onions and sweet mango relish – oh it’s a party of fiery fierceness in your mouth! To accompany my burger and our shared order of fries, I had sangria! Now where my burger impressed with its powerhouse of tastes, my sangria fizzled with the lack thereof.  Being candid, it was flat, perhaps overly iced and the mixed flavors of the wine, fruit, brandy and soda did not impress this Seattle foodie’s taste buds. That’s Real talk for you.

The finish aka dessert – Jenny and I decided to share, which is a good idea because as the saying goes – a moment on the lips forever on the hips! So we dined on a baked to order chocolate chip cookie a la mode. The cookie was decent, not as hot as I hoped it would come out. However, the ice cream was divine! And it did NOT disappoint! A creamy vanilla bean! Awww…it completed the meal!

All in all BHT is a hip, trendy restaurant on the rise, and the price is right! TD definitely knows what he is doing. Now onto some Serious Pie with my partner in crime/eating, J. Kor! We’ll be there next Tuesday around 7:30pm. Join us if you can! It’ll be EPIC – It might even change lives!