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seeking szechuan spicy goodness

Went to Lionhead last weekend and it was very good. This is Jerry Traunfeld's new restaurant and is located just next door to Poppy. The flavors were very authentic and there was good use of actual Schezuan peppercorns. The sesame noodle dish was great. The tendon bao was pretty good (dough was just a touch too tough), and the eggplant fries were probably better than Poppy's. These eggplant fries are fish saucy and spicy. I would figure that this place is only going to get better as they iron out some early restaurant kinks. Check it out!

Amazing AND healthy food in PHX?

Well, I had the best intentions to eat healthy... My travel buddy wasn't so into the idea and I was pretty easily led astray. We checked out Welcome Chicken and Donuts - great donuts (the red wine and chocolate one was one of the best donuts I've ever had) and great chicken (great even without the sauces) but they didn't really play off each other at all in the way that chicken and waffles do. We had a fantastic meal at Pizzeria Bianco - the antipasto plate was terrific and the pizzas were as good as advertised. The next morning we had a very very tasty breakfast at Dick's Hideaway. The relleno with both sauces and eggs on top was wonderful. Dinner was at Citizen Public House. It sounds like that chopped salad might have some detractors just because of some hype associated with it. But having gone in without knowledge of it I thought it was really inventive and delicious. The other items there were done well for the most part but didn't stand out for me.

I was caught off guard by many places being closed on Monday and also the lunch only nature of places like Noble Eatery and Zookz made eating at them harder with our lunch times being occupied by baseball games and hiking. But overall it was a fun trip with some very good food. Thank you for the recs - even though I didn't get to any of them.

Mar 18, 2015 in Phoenix

Amazing AND healthy food in PHX?

Thank you so much Bax! That sounds perfect. We will try and hit them up on Monday. And yes, those prices don't sound too bad.

Mar 02, 2015 in Phoenix

Amazing AND healthy food in PHX?

Hi all! I'm a hound from Seattle and my buddy is from San Francisco. We're going to spring training in a couple of weeks. We love good food. Last trip we did together was in Portland and we crammed in 6 square meals a day! BUT, this time i'm on a health kick and starting to lose some real weight and I'd like to keep that going. I've already made plans to "cheat" for Pizzeria Bianco but for the most part I'd love to have some recs for places that are healthy AND delicious. I know I can get a salad at pretty much all of the best restaurants but if there are any unique places or dishes that I should know about I would very much appreciate it. And if you have some good hiking recs I'd love em too! Thank you so much.

Mar 01, 2015 in Phoenix

Please help me on my bromantic vacation.

So, things didn't always go according to the food plan but it was memorable and A LOT of food! I was only in Portland from 6pm on Friday to 3pm on Sunday and yet crammed in a pretty good variety of restaurants. My impression based on this trip and a shorter previous trip where I ate at Park Kitchen and Kenny and Zukes, is that the high points are higher in my town of Seattle but you guys are blessed with an overabundance of great and affordable dining options.

Friday night was Pok Pok to start and we only waited about 5 min before sitting at the bar. The cocktails were great - inventive and I happen to be a big fan of vinegar so the combination worked well for me. Ike's wings were the highlight for sure. I would like to eat here with a larger group because what I had didn't quite come together as a meal. The wings, ribs and a pork belly, shrimp and glass noodle clay pot dish did not compliment each other in anyway. I was a little limited by my buddy's spice intolerance.

After that had a very unmemorable fish and chips plate at a pool hall in downtown but it served its purpose as beer snack food. Also serving its purpose was VooDoo donuts since we walked past it at 11pm and there wasn't much of a line. It surpassed low expectations for me since the maple bar was better than average and topped with tasty bacon.

Next morning made our way to Pine St Biscuits. No wait really (a very awesome theme to the trip) and we split the reggie deluxe. I think it would be difficult to combine these ingredients into anything that wasn't tasty. It was a little better than the version I get in Seattle at Serious Biscuit so that's good. We walked over to Stumptown from there and washed the Reggie down so that we could then head over to Screen Door and get brunch! The wait here was 20 minutes and the longest we would encounter. I thoroughly enjoyed my fried oyster benedict and would happily order that again. The accompanying grits were not very impressive but this being my second breakfast I was not sad to leave most of it unfinished. My friend had the waffle with praline bacon and it was very good. I think that Portland does a much better waffle than Seattle. This meal was much cheaper than I expected especially because the giant grapefruit juice I got was only 2 dollars. We had some coffee we didn't care for at the place next door to Screen Door.

We spent a couple hours at Powell's and then went and got ice cream at Salt and Straw. I think this was the high of the trip for me because I believe it is better than any ice cream I can get in Seattle and it might be better than BiRite in San Francisco. I got to try about 10 flavors and the only disappointing one was the Elvis that just tasted like PB and J when I was hoping for bacon, bananas, etc. The blue cheese and pear ice cream was amazing and the olive oil my next favorite.

We went over to Bushwacker's Cider after and were both underwhelmed. But they were nice and it was very affordable so I would still possibly recommend it to any big fan of dry ciders. Then before the Blazer's game we grabbed some beers at Upright Brewing which had a cool casual setup. I enjoyed the beer aged in a pinot noir barrel. We grabbed a couple of sandwiches upstairs at Stingray Cafe and it was better than I had hoped. It served its purpose of holding us off till the game ended.

After the game we walked over to Toro Bravo (lots of walking was key!) and shared some small plates. I found TB to be the most disappointing and quickly crossed Tasty and Son's off of my brunch possibilities for the next day. I did enjoy the salt cod fritters and the mushrooms on toast but found the potato dish to have a flavor too similar to ketchup mixed with mayo. I think the bacon wrapped dates could have benefited from one additional flavor component (manchego cheese, harissa?) and one additional textural component (if the bacon were crispy or if the almond in the center was larger?) The blood orange salad needed a bit more acidity and salt. The pasta dish was not right for me - the egg noodles too chewy and the flavors evoking more mac and cheese than anything Spanish. The olive oil cake at the end was fine though and the bill was cheaper than I anticipated.

The next day we targeted the Waffle Window and saw that we could sit at Bread and Ink which we thought would have the same menu. We were disappointed once we realized that this was not the case but honestly, I think the chicken and waffles here was one of my favorite things on the weekend. The forkful of juicy, crunchy fried chicken, sweet waffle with cardomom syrup, and lemon parmesan cream was a combination that general appeals heavily to me. My friend's Frisian french toast was much more average than I expected and a bit disappointing.

After hiking Multnomah Falls we returned and grabbed some sandwiches at Bunk. While being good, I don't know if Bunk would even make my top ten sandwich places if it were in Seattle. The pulled pork with apple slaw was very tasty but the bread a bit overly toothsome. But I have to say I liked it better than the pork belly cubano. I was a expecting something more novel but it tasted like a standard cubano but with pork belly. My friend and I remarked that after Paseo in Seattle most sandwiches are a bit of a disappointment. Oh well.

Picked up some really fantastic cookies from Two Tarts bakery to take home too.

Great trip overall. There are still plenty of places I still want to try and I thought it was odd that we didn't end up making it to any food carts. We just mistimed things in that regard. Thank you all for the recs and guidance. It really is a remarkable city for food and drink.

Please help me on my bromantic vacation.

Thanks again everyone for the suggestions. Really looking forward to this weekend. Also, i am staying at a hotel next to the basketball arena, where is the best coffee near there? Also, is Tanuki mite of a "can't miss"than Boke Bowl?

Please help me on my bromantic vacation.

Thank you for the brewery recs and the info on Tabor. Of the open late carts, is Potato Champion or Whiffie Pies the best bet? Is the Reggie available at Pine State Biscuits at the Saturday market? Is Bushwhackers Cider good?

Please help me on my bromantic vacation.


I am driving down from Seattle next weekend (1/25) and my best buddy is flying up from the SF bay area. We are meeting in your awesome city for a couple of days and I have been talking up how awesome the food scene in PDX is. Looking to keep it casual and affordable. How does my plan sound: Friday around 4pm (any place do a great happy hour on Friday?) was thinking of Apizza Scholls, Boke Bowl, or Pok Pok. Then we need a late night snack for Friday and I was hoping for a food cart (is Built to Grill open late Friday? Tabor?)
Saturday brunch I was thinking of Screen Door or perhaps Pine State Biscuits. We are going to a Blazers game that night so is there a "best" brewery near the arena? Thinking that we'll try to cram in a meal in before the game but might not succeed, especially if I get some Salt and Straw ice cream before then. Planning on Luc Lac late night sometime. Then on Sunday, what is the best brunch place with a wait time of 15min or less? Then Bunk Sandwiches for lunch and then the trip is sadly over. Anything I'm missing? Thanks so much!

Kinder Eggs?

I believe I saw them at International Deli in Bellevue.

Eclectic Tasting Menus in Seattle?

The closest thing you will find to your criteria, I believe, is going to be Spur Gastropub. But while they use a fair amount of molecular gastronomy, its not really in the wacky way that Wylie Dufresne uses it at WD50. I do not know of any restaurants in the area that are doing "weird and wacky". Perhaps you can do the tasting menu at Spur and then go and grab some drinks and bar snacks at Unicorn to get the wacky part you seek. Good luck!

Momofuku-style pork buns?

Momofuku has a few different types. Facing East in Bellevue has what they call "pork burgers" and they are the Taiwanese buns - gua bao that I believe you are seeking. They are delicious there.

Where is the best brunch? Seattle? Eastside?

Do try brunch at Lynn's Bistro in Kirkland. You are started out with a basket of delicious fresh baked croissants. The french onion soup is one of the best anywhere and the brunch fare is great too. It is a highly charming place and one that I wouldn't hesitate taking out of towners to.

Anything to Eat in the Kirkland Area?

Cafe Juanita is head and shoulders above anything else in Kirkland. Izumi is great. I have been to Lynn's many times and love it - great brunch with fresh made croissants. Aside from the chef being Vietnamese, I would say it is pretty straight forward French food.

I think that Cactus does some really fun and tasty stuff if only loosely Mexican/Southwest. Shamiana does a slightly upscale Indian/Pakistani menu well.

Cafe Juanita
Kirkland, WA, Kirkland, WA

Shamiana Restaurant
10724 NE 68th St, Kirkland, WA 98033

12539 116th Ave NE, Kirkland, WA 98034

Dim Sum on eastside

Noble Court is okay but Top Gun is better. Top Gun is probably the best on the eastside... probably.

Noble Court Restaurant
1644 140th Ave NE, Bellevue, WA 98005

Seattle First Timer - Trip Itinerary Help Please!

I live here and am still jealous of your trip! Thank you for the fantastic report. Glad you had a wonderful time.

Torontonian coming for a short visit - approve?

Getting from Bellevue to Seattle without a car is not very convenient but doable. Still, I'll add some recommendations for you in Bellevue to have as options - there are a lot of chain restaurants and places that feel like chains in the downtown Bellevue area but some of the best options are: Monsoon East (a newer branch of an established Seattle restaurant) for some inventive and flavorful Vietnamese food (they do not strive for authenticity though). Facing East for some Taiwanese food (I would eat lightly here and stick to the pork burger appetizer and one other dish that looks good to you). And John Howie Steak offers some pretty tasty items and a good happy hour. But definitely try to get over to Seattle whenever possible.

Monsoon East
10245 Main Street, Bellevue, WA 98004

John Howie Steak
11111 Northeast 8th Street, Suite 125, Bellevue, WA 98004

Torontonian coming for a short visit - approve?


I think that your level of homework before posting is refreshing and much appreciated and should net you many helpful responses. Welcome!

Your friend may have had Ezell's fried chicken. Few on this board would say it is the best fried chicken but it is good. Because Oprah has endorsed this place some people do tell their friends that they went there and had the "famous" chicken.

Paseo has been getting a lot of national recognition lately (rightfully so) and it seems that Seattle may soon be known for the Paseo sandwich in addition to the coffee and seafood.

I think that Flying Fish is solid but wouldn't make the short list. I also wouldn't say that Maximillien's mussels are noteworthy. I like the seafood at Anchovies and Olives. Checking out the Walrus and Carpenter would get you over into the fun Ballard neighborhood.

I would add Poppy to your "interesting and delicious" list.

Breakfast at Senior Moose might be interesting for you in that it gets you some quality Mexican food and breakfast in one.

Have a great time!

Flying Fish
2234 1st Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121

Best Cioppino?

I lived in Santa Cruz for a while and would make the drive down to Phil's to get some of that great cioppino and some of Phil's other great items regularly. I have unfortunately not found a cioppino that is as good. I think that someone is going to chime in that the cioppino at Jack's Fish Spot in Pike Place Market is a good choice but I am going to have to disagree with that in advance. Jack's serves a decent cioppino for cheap and that has its merits but it is nothing like Phil's. If I recall, and it has been a while, I think I had a very good cioppino at Etta's. Let us know if you find something good!

Pike Place Market
1501 Pike Pl, Seattle, WA 98101

Jack's Fish Spot
1514 Pike Pl Ste 2, Seattle, WA 98101

Where can we find a good Mojito in Seattle?

My wife would give an enthusiastic endorsement to Cactus.

The New Lunchbox Laboratory

Just heard about the unfortunate passing of Chef Scott Simpson at only 38 years old. Not sure what that will mean for Lunchbox Laboratory but I thought it noteworthy for this thread.

Lunchbox Laboratory
1253 Thomas Street, Seattle, WA 98109

Marcel's Quantum Kitchen

I am thinking that this show might explain something that I found odd about his recent Top Chef all stars appearance: he wasn't really doing anything all that interesting or molecular. Even when he was challenged to make something in Wylie Dufresne's kitchen he didn't showcase any MG techniques beyond what has become "normal". I am thinking that this new show, Quantum Kitchen, was in the works and he might have either decided on his own or have been contractually obligated to save some of the more "Sci Fi" techniques for his show. Or maybe not, but that is the thought that crossed my mind upon seeing the promo for this show.

Austin CH visiting Seattle with toddler

I've taken my 2 year old to Poppy on several occasions and it has been fine. Poppy is sort of new. They are producing really great food and it is a fun environment.

Serious Pie is great but I think unless you can make it to their happy hour its just a bit overpriced. Perhaps the best pizza i've had but I don't want to spend 25 bucks/ person to be full off of pizza IMHO.

My son has been to Mistral Kitchen a couple of times. I definitely wouldn't say it is kid friendly but they had high chairs and seemed to be okay with him there. It gets pretty loud in there.

Serious Pie
316 Virginia St, Seattle, WA 98101

Mistral Kitchen
2020 Westlake Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121

Local/organic dining in Seattle

Holly Smith of Cafe Juanita has always reminded me of Alice Waters. I've only eaten at Chez Panisse twice though but I remember that the first time I ate at Cafe Juanita the comparison struck me.

Cafe Juanita
Kirkland, WA, Kirkland, WA

A new spot for excellent croissants: Fuji Bakery

Went to the Bellevue location recently. It is really tucked away and would probably be pretty hard to find for people not very familiar with Bellevue. The pastries were great - had a chocolate croissant, a kouign aman, a little baguette with dark chocolate and balsamic, and a strawberry tartlet. The prices seemed a little bit on the high end. They seem to have a lot of Japanese clients since while I was there for about 10 minutes there were 4 Japanese speaking clients who came in. Despite me being Japanese they must have known that my Japanese is terrible and so talked to me in English.

your favorite foie gras dish in Seattle right now?

My favorite foie preparations have always been at Cafe Juanita. I find that other places are just a let down and my guilt over eating foie is just magnified. At this point I think I will just stick to eating it at Cafe Juanita.

Cafe Juanita
Kirkland, WA, Kirkland, WA

Last minute trip to Seattle area this weekend

Glad you enjoyed Copperleaf. I have been wanting to go back there lately.
I am not a fan of Southern Kitchen but thought maybe it was just me. Sorry to hear that it was a bit of a mess.

Seattle has a ton of great food for you to check out in the future!

Southern Kitchen Restaurant
1716 6th Ave, Tacoma, WA 98405

Copperleaf Restaurant
18525 36th Ave S, Seattle, WA 98188

All-you-can-eat ribs anywhere near Seattle?

3 Pigs BBQ in Bellevue has all you can eat beef ribs on Wednesdays. Pretty good stuff for round these parts.

Last minute trip to Seattle area this weekend

Robert -

The restaurant in the Cedarbrook Lodge is called Copperleaf and happens to be really, really fantastic. I would suggest that you have a wonderful dinner right there - plenty of seafood options. And if they have the chestnut soup on the menu it is a must.

In Gig Harbor I had a great lunch at the Green Turtle but that was 5 years ago and I hear that the owner might have changed. Aside from there, I am not too familiar with what to eat in Gig Harbor. There is an Anthony's there and that is a pretty safe fall back option.


Green Turtle
2905 Harborview Dr, Gig Harbor, WA 98335

Copperleaf Restaurant
18525 36th Ave S, Seattle, WA 98188


I too have noticed that Boom Noodle has been getting better and better. My first experience there was so bad I did not plan to ever eat there again but because a friend had purchased a Groupon deal and took me I had a chance to taste a marked improvement. I've been back again and it seemed to have again been improved.

Boom Noodle
1121 E Pike St, Seattle, WA 98122

Where can you buy Hummus in Seattle and who has the best?

The best hummus is in Kirkland at Meze. I think that its a bit overpriced, as is most of the menu, but it is the best. You can stop in and get it by the ounce. They also have awesome stuffed grape leaves.