So it turns out that when you’re on a fabulous vacation with someone you love, you don’t have a lot of time to blog. Sorry for the delay.
When we last left off, Chris had just arrived at 1am PST after dealing with flight delays. As you might imagine we rolled right in to bed, but had a hard time rolling out the next morning. I was tired and Chris was exhausted so we tried to take it as easy as one possibly can while playing tourist.
The day started with breakfast at our hotel where we both ordered the house specialty; a cobb omelet. It wasn’t the best omelet I’ve ever had, but the combination of ingredients, reminiscent of a cobb salad, was pretty brilliant and I’ll definitely be making this at home some day.
After that very filling breakfast we headed out and decided to take a boat tour of the harbor. The weather was pretty yucky and overcast, even by Seattle standards, but we were so tired and so full that the bat tour was a good option as we could sit and relax for awhile.
When we got off the boat, we headed to the Olympic Sculpture Park which is an outdoor extension of the Seattle Art Museum. We both really enjoyed this. You get to check out some great art and take in more views of the water and it’s totally free.
Next we headed back to Pike Place Market, where I finally got to see some fish throwing, though I wasn’t able to get a good picture of it. I also wish I’d taken pictures of the gorgeous flowers, fresh fruit and seafood in the market. Everything was so beautiful.
Our friend Brian was staying in Seattle until Sunday morning so we agreed to meet in the late afternoon on Saturday for some drinks. We went to a very cool pub I’d heard about called Radiator. We sipped local beers talked and most of all laughed and laughed. We also ordered some tater tots with gravy to snack on. Not exactly the healthiest snack, but we hadn’t eaten since breakfast and it was vacation so whatevs.
After much laughter and probably too many beers, Chris and I said goodbye to Brian and headed back to our hotel to relax before dinner. I’d made a reservation at Loulay, a restaurant that came highly recommended. I was excited too because I recognized the chef/owner, Thierry Rautureau, from his stint as a guest judge on Top Chef. On the map it had looked like the restaurant was right around the corner from our hotel, but guess what… the restaurant turned out to be IN our hotel! Double score!
We had an 8pm reservation, but when we arrived we were told that they were running behind. While this is frustrating when you’ve made a reservation, the restaurant made it right by giving us each a complimentary glass of champagne.
Once we were seated and got our menu I was overwhelmed as everything looked amazing. Our waitress helped us with the menu choices and we ended up splitting crab beignets with harissa aioli and the seared polenta with wild mushrooms and cheese crisp to start. Both were heaven. The beignets were crispy on the outside without being greasy and the inside was soft and smooth and filled with delicious sweet crab meat. The polenta was perfectly cooked with a a crisp outer layer and silky interior and the earthy mushrooms complimented it perfectly.
For our main courses Chris chose the Halibut with potatoes and caramelized fennel while I chose the braised lamb leg with harissa couscous and castlevetrano olives. Chris’s fish was perfectly cooked and delicious, but we agreed that my lamb was the star. It was richly flavored and melted in your mouth. The harissa couscous provided the perfect kick of spice and the tanginess of the olives cut through the bold flavors of the dish.
It is a well known rule that one must indulge in dessert while on vacation and Chris and I are nothing if not rule followers. Now, if you’ve read this blog at all or you know me in real life or you’ve spoken to me for more than 10 seconds you know this; strawberries are my absolute favorite food. So when the waitress reported that they had a special dessert that night of strawberry sorbet with macerated strawberries, basil and strawberry water I pretty much drowned everything else out. It was like a strawberry explosion which is pretty much my personal Nirvana and I’m still dreaming about it.
The way that I feel about strawberries is pretty much how Chris feels about chocolate so of course he opted for one of the chef’s specialties; hot chocolate, based on a recipe of the chef’s grandparents back in France, served with toasted brioche and salted butter. Chris loved it. I had a sip and thought it was delicious too. Chris also reported that spreading the salted butter on the toasted brioche and then dipping it in the hot chocolate sent it over the top.
After dinner we were exhausted and went up to our hotel room to get some much needed sleep and re-energize before our final day in Seattle.
What’s your favorite food? When’s the last time that you were able to indulge in it?