As I mentioned in my last post, I took off and visited Naomi in Seattle over Thanksgiving weekend. As a thank you to her and her fiance, I took them out for dinner at their choice, Staple & Fancy, where we ordered from the “fancy” side of the menu: 4 courses for $48/person. We also added half glass wine pairings to each course for each of us, and I had a cocktail at the beginning of the night. The total damage, with a reasonably generous tip for our very bizarre service? Just under $300.
I consider that a steal… but let’s talk about the food!
The menus were stapled to thin wedges of wood. I admit, when I first saw that, I thought “What have I gotten myself into?” but relaxed when my drink, the Madalina, arrived. Gin, St. Germaine, grapefruit, prosecco: literally, the ingredients read like a list of things I like in cocktails, so I happily drank that. And all of my wine pairings – which were delightful, but as with any evening involving wine pairings, I stop remembering the drinks after a few.
Lucky for you, I took notes. As my sister has informed me – “your posts when you take notes are sooo much better than the ones where you don’t remember anything.”
Ya think? 😛
Even though I’m positive very few people actually read and just look pictures instead…
The first course proved to be comprised of very many smaller bites and plates – starting with charcuterie made in-house: all very tasty. For some reason, I didn’t write down what was served to us.
Semolina crusted fried oysters with calabrian chili aioli were well-received; though I normally don’t tend to care for cooked oysters, these were plump, juicy and quite good. They lacked the mealy, crumbly texture I often find in cooked – nay, overcooked oysters, which is what I don’t appreciate.
Espresso cups filled with cauliflower soup, topped with basil, pine nuts and white pepper – smooth and warm sips on a windy night.
In the background: salad with baby romaine, champagne vinegar, walnuts – very light and refreshing.
In the foreground: albacore tuna, chili, cucumbers and avocado – also very light and tasty.
Housemade mozzarella with toasted bread: really creamy, sweet, and perfect with the light pickles scattered on top.
Smoked salmon spread on bread – really tasty, mild flavor but worked well overall.
And all of that was just the first course of snacks.
Our pasta course came and I was pleased to see bucatini all’Amatriciana; I love bucatini’s fat strands, and when it’s cooked al dente – even better. Coated each strand with the delicious tomato sauce, each bite was heaven. I loved this dish. YUM.
For our main courses, we were served mackerel atop a delicious tapenade that brought the fish to new levels. The fish was meaty and tender, flaky, perfectly cooked.
And our other main course was a giant pork chop served atop grilled vegetables. Most people might think “meh, a pork chop” – but as much flavor as possible was extracted from this slab of meat. It might have been brined, how juicy it was… delicious.
Many glasses of wine and sooo much food later, dessert arrived on the table. Gianduja with peanut butter on the left, and a ricotta huckleberry cheesecake on the left, which Naomi mentioned she dreams about… and all was devoured. I’m never much one to remember dessert, so these were tasty and well-received on my end, but I couldn’t tell you much more than I really liked that ice cream ball with the crumbles underneath it.
By the way – I knew I was in for a treat when the meal started and Naomi told me that the chef here is actually who she chose to cater her wedding. Yup. The biggest compliment someone can pay a chef? wanting that chef’s food at their wedding.
Sincerest gratitude and thanks once again to Naomi, Brett, Roger and Starbuck for being the bestest hosts I could possibly ever have in the Pacific Northeast. You all rock! I had an amazing time with you all, and can’t wait to do it again – when the sun stays out until 11:30 pm and you might actually be able to convince me to move there… sigh.
Cheers and till we eat again!!!
To everyone else – if you’re in the area, you should make a point to visit Staple & Fancy. It’s delicious, reasonably priced, and you will enjoy your experience… and seriously, it’s delicious.