Cardplayer
 
JetSetWay
 

28 Nov 2008

Thanksgiving

I love Thanksgiving. Why? I love eating and look forward to the gathering of friends and family.

About 90% of my Thanksgiving dinners have been at a private residence, and maybe 10% out at a restaurant.

The obvious plus of a home meal is that it is more intimate, easier to sit around and chat, and just seems like the right thing to do.

On the other hand, eating out is supposed to take the hassle away. Generally I find the food not on par with home let alone even the norm at the restaurant. Indeed often reservations are late and service marginal.

We did something different this year which combined the best of both worlds. We really wanted to entertain at home but so often that means that Allyn doesn't get to be part of the party. The solution: We had a great meal at home, YET we had it catered from GreensGourmet.com. How cool that was. The food and service was superb, AND we got to enjoy our own function.

 









27 Nov 2008

Babalu, Seattle's Best Bar

I haven't been to every bar in Seattle, but I can't imagine any that are superior to Babalu, located in the Wallingford district. The vibe is great, both literally and figuratively.

Owner Michael Prineas' (pictured above) relatively small room is jammed nightly Tuesday thru Sunday. The crowd is a total melting pot of races and ages. I understand that by midnight the crowd tends to get a bit younger, but I am asleep by then.

Every night a different music type is performed. One night is Latin, then Mambo and then Soul. Michael provides something for everybody, and they all like it all.

Tonight was Mycle Wastman, a native Seattleite. Mycle will be leaving shortly to play in Europe. I am predicting here and now that he will make it big. You heard it here first.

I must say though, the highlight of the evening for me was meeting George Fleming. Clearly I am dating myself, but for those who don't know the name, he was a star football player for the Washington Huskies and was MVP of the 1960 Rose Bowl (standing between me and my friend Mike Silver) .









26 Nov 2008

The Crow Restaurant, Seattle

While in Seattle, Allyn and I had the pleasure of having dinner with our close friends Mike and Janet Silver. Not too many people have had more experience eating and drinking at various places around Seattle than the Silvers. They know that we crave neighborhood dining when in Seattle, because this is something we lack in Las Vegas.

As such, Mike's pick was right on when he suggested that we eat at The Crow in lower Queen Anne. Located in an old warehouse, The Crow is close to downtown and the Seattle Center, and all other attractions the city has to offer.  And certainly is a deluxe American neighborhood bistro.

The Mediterranean platter worked well for starters. The Kumamoto Oysters were superb, and three of us had the chicken (which I will certain repeat next time around).

JetSetWay tip - Generally oysters cost about the same, big or small. Smaller oysters are usually tastier.

The wine list worked well with the food, complementing the entire dinner experience. Let them help you select, and you will probably have a bottle both better and cheaper than if you go it alone. As stated in the Seattle Times "They do everything absolutely right." They certainly do. Visit them online at www.EatAtCrow.com.
 









24 Nov 2008

Inn At The Market, Seattle

Seattle is a gorgeous city. True, it is gray here often. True, it drizzles here often. True, fashion is not the end all here, and true, currently all the teams suck. But, it is home.

Even though I lived in New York for four years and now Las Vegas for 15 years, Seattle is my home. Believe me; I did not move to Las Vegas for its natural beauty.

The best part about Seattle is the quality of the people. They tend to work, smile, and are honest and competent. The next best thing is its natural beauty. I have traveled all over the world and it holds its own with any place.

I remember several years ago driving along the coast from Nice to Monte Carlo and the guide pointing out that the road we were traveling had one of the most beautiful views in the world. My wife and I chuckled because we had a much more spectacular view from our bedroom window.

So, with all that in mind, let's talk Seattle Hotels. The most elegant and centrally located hotel is the city is the Fairmont Olympic. It has maintained its well deserved number one rating for generations. And its Georgian Room still probably is the most elegant restaurant in town.

This week end I am staying at The Inn at the Market. It is the ultimate small luxury hotel in Seattle. The picture you see are taken from my room (614, a beautiful parlor suite). We are right at the world famous Pike Place market which is exactly where we spent our entire day. Visit them online at www.InnAtTheMarket.com.

 









22 Nov 2008

Rustica Restaurant, Seattle

If you are looking for a very quiet, romantic high end Northern Italian restaurant in Seattle, this is the one.

We had a terrific meal at Rustica last night. There are only about 15 tables in this quaint restaurant and only about five of those were occupied. The food, service and décor were all top notch. With the exception of the Italian background music, it was totally silent.

We could tell by ambient conversation that all the other tables were occupied by frequent diners who were clearly fans. These folks are in dire need of marketing.

Allyn had a pan seared Petrole Sole (the fish of the day), perfectly prepared with lemon and capers with a side of vegetables and homemade pasta. The fish is ideal for those who like it light and mild. It was preceded by a spinach salad which was fresh, crisp and delicious.

I led off with a Caesar salad which had their custom dressing. It had more garlic than is customary. It worked fine for me, but I’m not sure it was exactly a Caesar.

The highlight was my Chicken Puntinesca. The spicy tomato sauce was superb and worked great with the nice Cabernet. Their wine list is marginal at best.

True, things are tough out there in Seattle (and it was raining), but if they can’t get at least one full turn on a Friday night, then I wonder how long they will survive.

For more information, visit www.RusticaSeattle.com.