This weekend, the biggest and best Northwest food festival is taking place in Portland. Seventy food media and at least that many star chefs--from Philly, New York City, Charleston, Austin, LA and Seattle--are taking over the Rose City for Feast Portland, a nonstop food blitz: tasting events, lectures, wine and beer events, collaborative dinners, and woah, are there some after-parties.
But if you're not already going, you're not going, since almost everything's sold out.
It's hard to know what to root for this time of year: More of this sensational summer weather, long dinners on the patio, meals at home that come together almost too easily with just a sliced ripe tomato and some cheese to start, something off of the grill for the main, and peak season fruit to finish. Or for the soothing cool mornings of autumn, sweater weather, the coziness of meandering walks through dry leaves, trips to the pumpkin patch, apple sauce and cider.
They said they were opening next Tuesday.
But, in a twist (who doesn't love a twist?), Westward and Little Gull Grocery, the north Lake Union waterfront seafood-centric, boat-up spots we've been waiting all summer for, are open! Right now. For lunch and dinner. And the in-between hours (11am til 10pm, or 11pm on weekends).
There've been some really nice developments happening down in the Rainier Valley lately. At the top of my list is the opening of Tin Umbrella, a sweet coffee shop in the under-served Hillman City neighborhood. Owner Joya Iverson spoke with the Rainier Valley Post about how she came to open the shop, and her story's quite an inspiration.
Last winter I introduced you to my favorite Snoqualmie Pass lunch stop, the Aardvark Curry Trailer. I've got a soft spot for folks who live their passion, and Dan's the happiest guy cooking out of a trailer I've ever met. His curry bowls are a huge hit with boarders, skiers and snowshoers, but he's outgrown his tiny digs. Wood's hoping to move into a real kitchen, one he intends to build inside a train. Well, part of a train.
In this age, it's the rare restaurant that opens without months of pre-opening buzz, endless teasing out of who'll tend bar and what the tables and chairs will look like. Every picture posted on Facebook, every newsy bit is covered by the food media. Last week alone we here at Seattle magazine (along with, ahem, several other publications) heralded the opening of Rachel's Ginger Beer at Pike Place Market only to say, Wait! Whoops! I take it back. Not open quite yet! The food news in this town is near impossible to keep up with, even when it's your fulltime job.
I drive past the home of Humble Pie (at 525 Rainier Ave, at Weller Street) on the edge of the International District (technically it's the Central District) almost daily on my way to and from the south end. And for over a year, I've watched as owner Brian Solazzi gradually built decking, planted living roofs and installed chicken pens around the two shipping containers he moved onto the property to house his pizza place.
When Joe Ray called, saying he felt like spilling some beans, I had an inkling that it might something big. Ray's writing and photographs have been featured in The Boston Globe, the New York Times and dozens of other publications.
It’s been almost a year since David Butler announced his plan to open a French wine bar in downtown Seattle. At last, the former Le Gourmand sommelier will launch Le Caviste (translation: the cellar man) downtown at 1919 7th Avenue in October.
Jason Stratton’s proven his finesse with the fine foods of Italy's Piedmont region at the beloved Spinasse. And Artusi, Spinasse's adjoining aperitivo bar, has steadily developed into a worthwhile dining destination in its own right.