Seattle is, as you well know, in the top left corner (also read as "Northwest") of the United States. Just below Vancouver, and just east of a mass of water colloquially known as The Pacific Ocean. It's the home of Grunge, Starbucks, and the breeding ground for music that changed our age. The age of the 80's and 90's, the age of my childhood.
I was surprised by the amount of trees and green within the city and in the Redmond/Bellevue metroplex (if you can call it that). The roads all align around various bays of Puget Sound and through the trees and mountains.
Seeing the impressive majesty of Mount Rainier on landing was really very nice, and I was surprised by the pleasant weather. I mean, what do you think of when you think Seattle? I think rain, rain, and more rain.
While work had to be done, and that was the reason for the trip, I always try to find time to find food, find the local, find the best of a city that I've never visited. Since I've never been to Seattle, I had much to explore, but little time.
I had acquired some insight from some local foodie personalities, including some chefs from Houston. Some of the places mentioned included Espresso Vivace, Pike's Place Market, Molly Moon Ice Cream, and others, and I was determined to seek them out.
First up, late night burger from Redmond's Bar and Grill. Black and Bleu was right for me after a long flight, and boy was it right. I love it when a restaurant can accurately cook a medium rare burger and not fuck it up. It definitely satisfied my late night hunger. At least, for a start
After a great IPA from Green Flash Brewery out of San Diego, I headed back to the hotel. It was late, and I was sure my other choices would be limited, so a night of sleep would be a welcome respite.
Down the tiny street in Redmond, I spied an ice cream cone, then a bunch of people, and like a beacon in the night, Molly Moon's Ice Cream was right next to my hotel. I was already full, but wanted to give it a try. A single scoop waffle cone with maple walnut ice cream was all it took, and I was fulfilled.
One of the main reasons I came to Seattle (besides actually having real work to do), was to try some BBQ in the Northwest. Jack Timmons has been doing incredible things in Seattle for a long time, including importing mesquite for his restaurant and putting out some amazing meats on three huge offset smokers. Jack's BBQ is the gold standard in Seattle.
Amazing stuff, as you can see, but I gotta say that the Beer Belly Sausage was the standout. 50/50 beef belly and beef brisket made with a locally produced beer. Amazing taste. So glad to see BBQ alive and well in the Northwest, being evangelize by someone like Jack.
Rounded out the trip with a trip to Duke's on Alki Beach for an incredible view and amazing Fish & Chips, a fantastic latte at Espresso Vivace and some really great banana pancakes at Chace's Pancake Corral.
Seattle is an amazing place, reminiscent of a smaller San Francisco, but with better trees. it's definitely a foodie town, so if you're around the area, get there and check it out!