Posts Tagged With: Dining

The Goldfish is still alive! (Dinner at Palisades)

Our goldfish, Rainy, is jubilant today. Finally, we’ve cleaned his fishbowl AND revived our lonely, neglected blog.

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Last night, we said good-bye to my brother and sister-in-law after a beautiful activity-filled, sunshiny 4 days.  To celebrate our last night together, they wined and dined us at Palisades in Elliott Bay Marina, just over the bridge into Magnolia.  This is now my new favorite spot in Seattle for bringing out-of-towners.  An expansive window overlooks the marina, across Elliott Bay to Seattle and the Needle and southeast to Mt Rainier. Magnificent view (on a clear day) as the sun sets on Seattle skyline and Mt Rainier.

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Oh yes, what about the food?  We started at the bar while waiting for a table of our choice. The drinks were excellent and our bartendress, Cynthia, quite entertaining and attentive. After sharing the wine list (on a customized ipad app, no less), she offered a complimentary sampling of a good Cabernet and then when Randy ordered a glass, she comped his glass.

Oh yes, but what about the food?! Seated at a window-side table, overlooking the view we’d waited for, we ordered appetizers: oysters on the half shell,  calamari, tomato-avocado salad and flat bread with baked gruyere and apples.  Oysters : A.  Perfectly prepared with tasty dipping sauces. Flat Bread: A-.  Calamari: B+ . Calamari dish was very flavorful, excellently seasoned, prepared with onions, sesame seed and other good things, but the calamari itself was lost in too much breading.  Tomato avocado salad: A. At least that’s what I think Mary would rate it. She ate it all without offering to share!

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For our entrees, we ordered the Halibut (strongly recommended), Risotto, Crab Stuffed Shrimp and Crab Cakes.

Mary devoured the crab cakes, exclaiming they were rich with flaky crab, very little filler, just lightly pan-fried and nicely seasoned.  My brother Randy, reveling in his first high-carb meal in months, had no problem eating every morsel of the Risotto, declaring it perfectly prepared with a delicate sauce, not too heavy or rich.

I (Claire) ordered the shrimp, which was also excellent – lightly grilled with meaty crab on top and a light delicate sauce that complemented without overpowering the flavor of the fresh seafood.  Our only disappoint, ironically, was the recommended Halibut. It was pan-fried with a nice crisp to the exterior, but a little overcooked, which gave it a slightly dry and heavy mouth feel.  Still tasty, but not as good as Randy had hoped.

Overall, we’d rate Palisades A- on food, A on service and A+ for ambiance and view.

We’ll be back!

Categories: Dining - Fancy | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

If our blog was a goldfish, it would have died …

Ugh…

Having a blog is a lot of responsibility. Maybe we weren’t ready … Now, we have some pretty good excuses for our lack of postings. In the last 30 days we had to finish our new downtown Seattle offices. We had to pack up our offices and actually move them to downtown Seattle. We had to pack up our house and move everything we owned to our new place in Kirkland. We had to unpack the new house. And, we hosted a massive 3-day event for 1000 of our customers and business partners.

But, just like being responsible for a pet, there are no good excuses for neglecting our fledgling blog. So, we are re-booting and will begin again to share our dining and adventuring in our new Seattle home.

Even though we have not posted anything in the past month, we have had the opportunity to eat at some fine local establishments, so there is the first place we will begin and catch up our posts.

Thank you for hanging with us, we will endeavor to be much more diligent with RandyandClaire.com v2.0.

Categories: Miscellaneous | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Lunch in Seattle – Paddy Coyne’s

An Irish Pub on the Seattle waterfront.

Ok, I will start with my disclaimer.  This was not a strategic foray into the Seattle dining scene.  Sometimes you are simply hungry and looking for someplace close that serves warm grub!  Yesterday we headed up to Seattle to do a walk through on our new home in Kirkland (19 days to move in.)  Then we ventured into Seattle to check on construction progress on our new offices.  The new office is in Belltown overlooking the sculpture park and the Puget Sound.  By the time we finished checking out the office it was nearly 3:30 and we hadn’t had time to get lunch.  So, we walked the two blocks down to the waterfront and went into the first place we found: Paddy Coyne’s Irish Pub.

I understand that this location on Pier 70 is their fourth restaurant.  Other locations are in Union Square, Bellevue, and Tacoma.  The decor is pretty much what you would expect inside; Irish pub meets American sports bar.  It does have a cozy little fireplace in the corner, which on a typical Seattle day can be a godsend. What is unique is that the restaurant sits on the pier and has outside seating with a water view.  Since it was nearly 4pm we were in that quandary of eating a full lunch or a quick snack to tide us over until dinner.  We opted for a middle of the road approach.

The menu includes Soups & Salads, Burgers & Sandwiches, Small Plates, and traditional Irish fare.  I was tempted to go with more Irish selections but thought they may be a bit heavy for this late in the day.  So, I opted for two sliders, some french fries, and a Guinness.  When you order sliders you have a number of options, and I went for the beef slider with white cheddar, lettuce, tomato, and honey mustard.  For my second tiny burger I picked the corned beef & cabbage slider with lettuce, swiss cheese, and a house sauce.  Claire ordered the chicken skewers which included glazed chicken with a teriyaki sauce, peppers, onions, and peanut sauce.  She didn’t realize that fries came with my sliders, so she ordered a side of the shoe-string fries with cheese and seasonings.  I should mention we ordered from the Happy Hour menu which is available from 3-6pm and 10pm-midnight each day.

The service was friendly and quick.  We received our drinks within a few minutes, and our food came just 10 minutes after our drinks.  The food was simply plated, but served hot from the kitchen.

A simple mid-afternoon lunch.

We clearly had more french fries than we needed, but it turned out ok since the fries that come with the sliders were not great.  On the other hand, the shoe-string fries were addictive.  They have just a hint of cheese on them, but are well seasoned and perfectly fried.

Claire’s chicken was nicely done, and the glaze and sauce were tasty.  The first slider I tried was the corned beef and cabbage selection. Wow, it was excellent!  The ever important bun-to-burger ratio was perfect.  The bun was moist but not mushy.  The burger was done medium and had amazing flavor.  I could have easily eaten a plate of these!

The beef slider had a good bun/patty ratio and was cooked medium rare (which I have found to be uncommon in sliders for obvious reasons,) but overall it was nothing special.  Wisely, we had the waitress take the basket of shoe-strings away before we put too much of a dent in it.  Did I mention how addicting they are?

We finished up our late afternoon lunch and promptly received the cheque.  How often have you had a good lunch, on the water front, in the middle of a tourist area, had drinks with your lunch, and had a bill less than $25?  Well, that’s what we got!

Overall we were very pleased with Paddy Coyne’s.  Good location on the water front, good service, good food, and darn good pricing (especially when you order from the Happy Hour menu.)

We will certainly being going back, and next time plan to take friends.  As I said, it is only a couple of blocks from our new office, so I can easily see this becoming a great after-work hangout.

– Randy & Claire

Categories: Dining - Casual | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

The beginnings of a list …

Well, it turned out to be much more difficult than I thought to assemble a list of “must go” restaurants in the Seattle area.  The problem: just too much to choose from!  I spent a few hours going through the lists I talked about in an earlier post.  I also spent more time on Google.  The result is that I was completely overwhelmed.  I did put together the beginnings of a list that we can use more as a guideline than a target list:

Wild Ginger El Gaucho Le Pichet Agua Verde
Dahlia Lounge Lola Harvest Vine La Carta de Oaxaca
Canalis Daniel’s Broiler Monsoon Lampreia
Cafe Juanita Crush Volunteer Park Café Sutra
Rover’s Steelhead Diner Le Gourmand Salumi
Metropolitan Grill Cactus Salish Lodge Elliott’s Oyster House
Cafe Campagne Purple Café & Wine Bar Kingfish Café Taberna del Alabardero
Etta’s Ruth’s Chris Steak House Corson Building Palace Kitchen
Ray’s Boathouse 13 Coins Sea Garden Tavolàta
Serious Pie Flying Fish the Herbfarm Altura

These are mostly restaurants that were mentioned as top restaurants on multiple lists or were in some of the areas where we will be spending a lot of time.  For instance our new office is in the Belltown district, so I gave Belltown restaurants preference.  For the most part, however, we will simply use this list as a reference when we don’t know where to go.  We will mostly continue stopping in places that look “cool” or are recommended by people we know.

Since we are heading up to Seattle today to do a walk through on our new house and check construction progress at the new office we may actually get a chance to have a meal someplace which would give us an opportunity to write about our first experience.  We shall see …

-Randy

Categories: Miscellaneous | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

How to decide where to go?

Well, we now have our mission, and we have approximately 25 days to plan our approach since we don’t actually move to Seattle until July 20th.  But, how do we decide where to go?  If you Google “Seattle Restaurants” you get a map that looks like it has the measles (see below.)  There are literally hundreds of restaurants in Seattle proper, so figuring out where to start is a bit daunting.  I have a few ideas of places to go based on suggestions from friends, TV, and newspaper stories.  I also started to peruse some of the well known lists:

Plenty to choose from ...

Seattle restaurants, plenty to choose from.

First, there is Zagat’s ‘Most Popular’ list.

Then there is Yelp’s List of Seattle Restaurants.

I could check the restaurant reviews in the Seattle Times.

Open Table has it’s own list of Top Seattle Restaurants.

UrbanSpoon.com has a pretty cool list of top rated restaurants.

There is also Tripadvisor.com, the Seattle Weekly, Fodors, Lonely Planet, and restaurants.com.  The list seems to go on forever!

I did however especially like the article ‘The 30 Seattle Restaurants Experiences You Must Have Before You Die” in Seattle Met website as it seems to have some of the more off-beat establishments.

At the end of the day, I decided to use all these lists and more to build my own super-highbrid list of places we want to try.  As soon as I get the list compiled, I will share it here.

-Randy

Categories: Miscellaneous | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Welcome to our new blog

Welcome to our new blog!  If you want to know a little more about Claire and me just check out the “About Randy & Claire” link at the top of this page.

One year ago Claire and I moved from Dallas Texas to Olympia Washington.  We are both “foodies” and enjoy cooking at home and dining out.  So far we have found the Pacific Northwest to have amazing seafood options, great wines, and some world-famous restaurants.

Next month we move from Olympia to Seattle and decided to set a goal of visiting and sampling as many cool venues for food and of course the occasional “adult beverage” as we can.  We make the move the third week of July and we are anxious to experience all that Seattle has to offer.

Our goal is to try one new special venue each week and share our experience.  The first question is how do we assemble our initial “target list?”  Any suggestion for “must go” establishments will be much appreciated.  We plan to share our experiences as we eat our way around Seattle, and we encourage others to share their experiences here as well.

Let the adventure begin!

Categories: Miscellaneous | Tags: , , , | 7 Comments

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