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christy319's Profile

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seeking szechuan spicy goodness

I saw that too. I am gratified to see that they have a photo of Swimming Fire Fish on the main page and call it their signature dish, and that they seem to have adopted "home of the swimming fire fish" as their motto. I hope that next time I go for it they don't have their substitute chef and it's back to normal.

On the way to Whistler a few weeks ago I had a killer "Boiled fish in chile paste" (Swimming Fire Fish by another name) broth at Alvin Garden, a Hunan place in Burnaby. It was divine. But I missed the wood ear mushrooms and sprouts I get at Bamboo Garden-it was just fish and celery.

Apr 24, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Authentic Chinese, any region

Bellevue, Boo. I get it, but boo. My kingdom for good Szechuan/Hunan in the NW quadrant of the city.

I know, I know, it's not the right market for it.

Apr 23, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

lynnwood to anacortes, where to stop for lunch?

I've only been to Taqueria La Bamba in Mt Vernon once, but it was delicious. They had prawn ceviche tostadas, which is my favorite thing to get but not every Mexican place has it. It's tucked back and not obvious from the road. It serves a Mexican clientele and when they brought out the complimentary salsas, the kid looked back and forth at us a few times then said, "sorry, these are spicy." Lol.

But I would highly, highly recommend going and getting a crab sandwich, or a lobster roll, at Skagit's Own Fish Market.

Apr 21, 2015
christy319 in Pacific Northwest

Gravity Bar clones?

Does Sunlight Cafe on Roosevelt still exist? I used to love those salads with lemon tahini dressing, sprouts and sunflower seeds. Boy do I eat differently now.

Apr 21, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Sourdough Bread (SEA)

That's what's different about the bread I posted about. It's a loaf, but it's so dense and heavy. Though really, it's not the shape I'm hung up on. It's the denseness and tang.

Apr 20, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Walk-In Happy Hour for a group of 20?

Quality Athletics is huge and has some good stuff, but it probably wouldn't work right before a game, unless you called ahead.

Apr 17, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Walk-In Happy Hour for a group of 20?

Altstadt. I've done work groups here and they've been very accomodating, holding tables and allowing separate tabs (I called to arrange this). It is fun and cool but not a dive at all. It's a big space with BIG tables, which is why I think walk ins would be fine.

Pike Place Brewery is another spot we've gone for work, and some people like it but I prefer Altstadt.

ETA: Just saw you said cocktails. Don't remember if they have these or if its all beer.

Apr 17, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Cheng Biao Yang Opens Country Dough in Pike Place This Summer

Oh, very cool, thanks.

Apr 13, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Sourdough Bread (SEA)

it's good but it's just like the sliced Essential sourdough (actually it's not even that different from a la Francaise). Maybe there isn't anything like my special Idaho bread.

Mar 24, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

San Juan Islands Restaurants

I think Orcas. It has New Leaf, Inn at Ship Bay, Doe Bay, and a few other good spots in Eastsound. But more importantly (IMO) it has better groceries (one fairly big grocery, one natural food store, one specialty food/wine shop called Roses), good bakeries (Roses and Brown Bear) and the all important Buck Bay Oyster Co, which has not only oysters but clams (very clean ones), crab (they'll clean them), and a bit of garden produce. The little farmer's market on Saturdays is worth a stop, too. There are only a few produce vendors--it's a rocky island after all--but it's enough.

My post is very biased because I spend way more time on Orcas. It could be that San Juan has places I just haven't found on my infrequent trips. But I don't think so.

Mar 23, 2015
christy319 in Pacific Northwest

Update: Authentic Lebanese Food In/Near Seattle?

People rave about this little counter, and they are supposed to expand: http://seattle.eater.com/2014/12/2/73...

Mar 23, 2015
christy319 in Pacific Northwest

seeking szechuan spicy goodness

We went to Szechuan First yesterday. I'd go back if I were in the area, but I'd try different things. We ordered some standards that we know and love elsewhere to see how they compare (pea vines with garlic, shredded potato with jalapeno, spicy cucumbers). These were all good. Ma Po Tofu was good, but I ordered it without the pork (it gave that option on the menu) but there was still a little pork in it. There were no Szechuan peppercorns in it. :( We also got a special--crispy sole something or other. It wasn't clear this would be a whole fish, but it was. I don't know if this is a thing that people like or if we got a bad version, but it was so bony, so fried, and there was so little meat, it wasn't even worth trying to get the meat. We picked it apart but really all there was was crust. All you could taste was fried--no other seasoning came through.

Mar 23, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Sourdough Bread (SEA)

My coworker brought me a loaf today! It's not as dense and heavy as the Idaho bread, but it smells good.

Mar 23, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Pike Place Market seating

I would point you to this area also. But if you buy something to eat, just ask the vendor where the nearest seating is. Many vendors do have their own (limited) seating.

Mar 23, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Grocery Store Roasted Chicken - Who has the best?

The no hormones/antibiotics isn't much to get excited about. First, no chickens get hormones--this was banned by the FDA in 1960 (it's on the label of so many chickens because it sounds good, and so many people don't know better). Second, everyone is jumping on the no antibiotics bandwagon, even McDonald's. So while this is good, it's really the new norm. So, that chicken labeled no hormones/antibiotics could have been produced in the worst, most inhumane kind of factory farm. It is no indication of quality, humane care, or anything besides the chicken doesn't get antibiotics.

Mar 18, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

New Contemporary Japanese Cafe--Phinney Ridge

I like this too. I don't think I'd tell someone to drive across town for it, and it's not a huge menu, but it's a nice addition to the neighborhood.

Mar 15, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Sourdough Bread (SEA)

Thanks for thinking of me. I just got back from skiing in MT. I hope you enjoyed it...

Mar 13, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Seattle: Bow to Empire?

I've read that we have the lowest percentage of national chains than any city in the country. So I wouldn't make a sweeping judgement about Seattites wanting the predictability of the known. The chefs-having-multiple-restaurants thing is a thing everywhere, so again, I don't really think we have a quirk here.

And major papers need their reviewers to review places with a pretty broad appeal, so the chef empire places probably fit that bill, and that's what they draw their top 10 lists from. Occasionally reviewers write about how tough it is to choose restaurants to review that satisfy foodie readers, nonfoodie readers, editors, etc.

Maybe Portland is just behind the curve in terms of the chef-empire. I'm not saying that in a bad way, like chefs there SHOULD be opening more restaurants, but maybe they will. After all, they're still living the dream of the 90s...

So I don't think this is really indicative of anything in particular to Seattle.

Mar 06, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Sourdough Bread (SEA)

Thank you--I find myself on Bainbridge occasionally and I'll check it out!

Mar 04, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Indian Food Suggestions

It's been a few years since I've been to any of them, so I hesitate to recommend anything (Spice Route was a favorite; their gobi manchurian was like crack. But again, it's been too long...) but there are many Indian restaurants in Bellevue and Redmond that serve an Indian expat clientele, so the Eastside is really where you want to look for the good stuff.

Mar 03, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Pioneer Square roundup

One thing I read made it sound like the space, the other made it sounds like having 2 places was just to much for them.

Feb 27, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Pioneer Square roundup

Little Uncle is closing.

Feb 26, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Let's eat - Fremont area

I haven't had poorly executed food at Westward, I just don't, in general, think the flavors are delicious. Maybe one or two things have been, but not enough to make me have dinner there again. But I've had a lovely time with oysters and cocktails sitting at that outward facing bar.

Feb 26, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Let's eat - Fremont area

Uneeda Burger (good veggie burgers, amazing shakes)
Rockcreek (seafood, good happy hour)
Pelmeni Dumpling Tzar
Cafe Turko
Roux
Lighthouse Roasters (coffee)
Westward has an amazing waterfront space, though I'm not as crazy about the food as I am the space. Still, you have to check it out once, even if just for a drink.
I think the jury is still out on whether Paseo is still great, but it's worth checking out, or following our thread about it
Brouwers for beer.

PCC Natural Markets has a prepared food section.

If you head up Fremont Ave to Phinney Ave, there are lots more choices...Fresh Flours Bakery and Stumbling Goat are my favorites.

Did you mean no shellfish when you said fish but no seafood?

Feb 25, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

La Carta de Oaxaca - good?

I think someone already pointed you to Pestle Rock, around the corner from La Carta, for great Thai. It's a great pick--really nicely done, with a much more interesting menu than you normally see (it's not that ubiquitous mix-and-match meat + standard noodle or rice dish).

Feb 25, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle
1

La Carta de Oaxaca - good?

Did they change their fish? The one time I got a fish burrito it was tilapia, cooked on the flattop then flaked. It was awful, muddy and oily--I actually threw the burrito out then wrote them an email begging them to have a cod option, even if it costs us more.

Their "veggie" stuff bums me out, too--it's mostly onions, with a few green peppers and a zucchini shard or two. I love their salsas and the fact that they have sopes and other less common items, so the bad fish and veggie options make me sad.

Feb 25, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

La Carta de Oaxaca - good?

It's a very well loved place, and always packed (expect a wait). I like the food but not generally enough to deal with the wait or how loud and cramped it is. But like I said, so many people do love it here that I hate to discourage a visit.

Feb 24, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle
1

Sourdough Bread (SEA)

In desperation, and after making it a habit to lug home at least 2 loaves every time we ski Sun Valley (and these things are heavy! One loaf weighs ~2.5 lbs), I'm bumping up my old thread. There has to be some bakery somewhere in WA--somewhere closer than Ketchum ID--that makes a good heavy tangy dense sourdough sandwich loaf. There HAS to be. I feel like I've had everything in Seattle but maybe somewhere else in WA? I love my Macrina sour ficelle but sometimes I need regular toast. I am eating the last of the second loaf I just brought back and it's pretty pathetic how I'm trying to make it last (I'd frozen it), rationing it.

Feb 20, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Favorite chowhound stops on the Skagit tulip trail?

Skagit's Own Fish Market for their crab sandwich, which is fantastic, or lobster roll. It's by far the best lobster roll I've had outside the NE.

Feb 19, 2015
christy319 in Greater Seattle

Local bar/restaurant favorite in Vail?

We didn't end up eating in Vail at all, but just wanted to mention that we had very good wine and food, and great service, at Vin 48's happy hour in Avon, and good food /service at the Golden Eagle in Beaver Creek. I wasn't super inspired by most of the menus I'd looked at at other restaurants, so we made ourselves regulars in both places. We happened upon the free champagne given out by the Chophouse at 3:30, and that was nice.

City Market in Avon was fine, though I'm still surprised the Vail Valley area doesn't have better. My friend from Denver came up to meet us and we got to talking about groceries, and she told me that in Denver you really only have a few national chains and that's it--there aren't great independent groceries, or great local chains, either.

Feb 19, 2015
christy319 in Mountain States