Tossed Salads and Scrambled Eggs

Posts Tagged ‘Tavern Law

It was a pleasant May in Seattle. I did not feel sodden as I did last spring and we were blessed with many glorious days as a prelude to the northern summer. On a pleasant Saturday we enjoyed apéritifs at Tavern Law and sauntered down to Momiji (紅葉) for dinner with a group of Australian expats and tourists.

The sister restaurant of Umi Sake House in Belltown, Momiji is Japanese for maple. Painted burgundy, the front bar featured a curious white latticed lampshade and was saturated in natural light.

With the exception of the wide street frontage, the layout of Momiji is the same as Umi’s. A corridor opened to a spacious dining room. The counter had a prime view of the sushi chefs deftly slicing sashimi and shaping nigiri.

At the centre was a serene Japanese garden.

We perused the comprehensive menu as I sipped a summery cocktail, The Getaway. In a tall glass was Hendrick’s Gin, Pimm’s and soda topped with a lychee.

We ordered an array of dishes among the seven of us. First was ahi pokē. Diced ahi tuna and cucumber were tossed with onion slivers, shichimi (Japanese seasoning), soy sauce and sesame seeds. The first time I ate pokē was at a Flying Fish cooking class. A Hawaiian salad, it had a luscious contrast of textures.

A plate of prawn and vegetable tempura was coated in a lumpy batter and pleasingly crunchy.

Poached beets, and a mound of arugula and shiso were drizzled with lemon vinaigrette.

Portions of grilled king crab was paired with ponzu dipping sauce and mixed greens. A generous serving, the crustacean was charred and meaty.

Soft shell crabs were pan fried to golden brown. The spindly morsels were sweet and succulent.

Wrinkled and charred, the half dozen prawn and scallop gyoza were juicy parcels of seafood encased in a thin wrapper.

Buckwheat noodles were stir-fried with cubes of tofu and an assortment of vegetables. Garnished with green onions, pickles and nori, the triangular bowl of yakisoba was a symphony of flavours.

With casual ambience and quality ingredients, Momiji is a delicious addition to 12th Avenue in Capitol Hill.

Advertisements

Online shopping is easy in America. There are many aggregate websites that curate brands with cheap delivery and free return. I like browsing the ones with a short sales period such as One Kings Lane and Gilt as there tend to be bargains for items that are on your wish list.

When Gilt City launched in Seattle I was curious as to how it would be positioned in a crowded market. They seem to have targeted a demographic keen on a lifestyle of culture, health, fashion and food. Maybe I’m one of those people as I’ve purchased vouchers!

Gilt City Seattle and Seattleite hosted the Fall Comforts Taste the Season event at Wing Luke Museum yesterday evening. The autumn gastronomic celebration coincided with the ‘Fields to family: Asian Pacific Americans and food‘ exhibition.

Concentric circles are suspended from the ceiling at the entrance. The bells can be rung with a donation, to ‘clear the air, send a wish, say hello’.

This list of restaurants was what enticed me to attend! (Image courtesy of Seattleite website.)

The GastroGnomeLovely Lanvin and her neighbourly friend Phia were my dining companions. The GastroGnome and I needed a cool drink after a brisk walk on a mild day. Golden Beetle was mixing two cocktails and I had the Cargill. Hendrick’s gin, lavender liquor, black pepper syrup and lemon juice was a refreshing apéritif.

The tasting room was resplendent in Chinese red. Tables surrounded the perimeter and were decorated with an autumn theme.

Our first sample was the cassoulet from RN74. A generous ladle eaten with a petite spoon, the bean stew was peppery and warming, and crunchy from a scattering of bread crumbs.

Pork rib was braised in foie gras nage and wild mushroom, and topped with harissa jam. This morsel from The Chef in the Hat was tender with intense earthy flavours.

A mini tray of Foodz Catering brie and truffle mac and cheese was al dente and creamy.

Foodz Catering also had peppers stuffed with feta and pistachios, a sweet and savoury snack on a bamboo skewer.

Platters of corned lamb Rueben with sauerkraut and green curry aioli were substantial from Revel.

Artusi had scoops of eggplant and stone fruit caponata with cherry tomato and toasted pine nuts. The vinegar was balanced with the sweet fruits and the silky eggplant contrasted with the seeds.

Pork cheek pibil with potatoes was stacked in a cup by Poquitos. The chunk of meat was a little chewy but the diced potatoes were spiced and crispy.

Bastille had mussels with Rockridge hard cider, young ginger and fennel pollen with potato chips. In an aromatic broth, the plump bivalves were briny and fresh.

My favourite dish was pasta fagioli from Staple & Fancy, served by Ethan Stowell! Borlotti bean and ditaloni pasta in broth made with Parmesan rinds and bacon, and sprinkled with Parmigiano-Reggiano. This was the definition of hearty comfort food!

We meandered through the Fields to Family exhibition. It was an interactive display of the ‘sights, sounds, tastes and smells of foods in the homes and restaurants of diverse Asian Pacific Americans’.

Wok accoutrement hung on the wall.

On the left is a fortune cookie machine, and on the right is a noodle press and dough roller.

Framed photos of Chinese restaurant neon signs.

The story of Bing cherries.

We returned to Spur for dessert. Chefs McCracken and Tough paired freeze dried house made cereal with whole milk ice cream.

It was theatrical to watch the canister of liquid nitrogen being poured. The ice cream tasted of wholesome milk and cereal flakes were the sweetener.

A final treat was dianne’s Delights cake pops. Pumpkin, chocolate or vanilla, these whimsical desserts on a stick were popular.

Cheers to Gilt City Seattle for a food and drink event where the chefs were present!

coterie (co·te·rie) – noun
A small group of people with shared interests or tastes, especially one that is exclusive of other people.

A sister restaurant of both Tavern Law in Capitol Hill and Spur on the same block, The Coterie Room completes a trifecta of eateries by Chefs Brian McCracken and Dana Tough. Located in a corner brick building with dual street frontage, expansive windows let light inside as afternoon faded into twilight.

The dining room is simply decorated with slate coloured window frames, wooden furniture and pale walls. Its elegance is accentuated by a sparkling crystal chandelier and mirrors.

Our table was next to the living wall, a vertical planter box of cascading leafy greenery.

Categorised into small plates, main courses and family style, the menu features hearty fare. It was torrential rain outside and we were comforted by a glass of red wine, and a warm Grand Central Bakery rosemary and ginger roll with a pot of salted butter.

Our waitress kindly explained the sizes of the dishes and we agreed that we must return with a coterie of friends to sample more of the menu! We opted for three small plates and one family style to share.

First was sweet onion mac and cheese with duck ham. Served in a small graphite cocotte, the cute cast iron container of orecchiette was topped with crispy shallots. The al dente and creamy pasta was punctuated by morsels of duck ham.

The second small plate was marinated beets. I love the deep magenta colour of beetroot, staining your fingers as you cut into the bulb. Roasted beets have an intense earthy sweetness, perfect in a salad of peppery arugula, crunchy pistachios and a dollop of Cowgirl Creamery cottage cheese.

Four portions of golden buttermilk fried chicken were presented with a flourish. The drumsticks and thigh cutlets nestled on a mound of potato and bacon hash. A tuft of frisee salad was the requisite fibre. Caramel and glossy, a puddle of chicken gravy was soon absorbed by the hash. Cooked sous vide and then deep fried, the crunchy crust protects the juicy protein.

A side of heirloom baby carrots were bright batons coated in coriander butter and Taggiasca olive vinaigrette, and dotted with parsley.

The dessert menu was concise with only three items.

Mr S is partial to fruity desserts and ordered the pear sorbet with brown butter soil and roasted pistachios. The subtle flavour of the pear sorbet was highlighted by the slightly salty condiments.

Egg shaped cinnamon fritters were dusted with icing sugar and accompanied by a caramel apple dipping sauce. These fluffy treats were reminiscent of the zeppole at Tavolàta .

The rain had subsided and we left content with boxed leftovers.

The same week of the Sharone Hakman and SousVide Supreme demonstration and tasting, Myra tweeted a Rue La La deal. I only had fried chicken in mind when I paid twenty five dollars for fifty dollars value in food and beverages at Tavern Law.

Twelfth Avenue on Capitol Hill was buzzing on a Friday evening. By the owners of Spur Gastropub, Tavern Law celebrates the history of the speakeasy during the prohibition era. A vintage typewriter greets us at the entrance and it’s a charming space within.

A mural of an elegant lady in a floral blue dress grace the wall and a roulette wheel hangs at the bar.

A built-in bookshelf and gilded mirror complete the décor.

In an effort to cool down and be presentable after the humid ascent, I sat inside and gulped glasses of water while waiting for Ms S.

I stared at the scratched vault door and wall mounted rotary dial telephone, pondering their purpose. After much squinting, I read ‘Needle and Thread’ on the framed sign. After observing several people lingering nervously by the phone, I realised Needle and Thread is Tavern Law’s homage to the speakeasy!

Ignoring the creased paper the food menu is printed on, I perused the extensive drinks booklet, appreciating the explanation of cocktail terms like sling and sour.

We moved to a table on the sidewalk to enjoy the beautiful late summer weather. The English gin fizz with Earl Grey infused gin, lemon and honey was a refreshing apéritif.

We ordered a plate of fried chicken each. It was a sight to behold – two golden crusted portions perched atop a bed of mashed potatoes. Cooked sous vide and then deep fried, the light and crispy skin protected the tender and juicy meat. The coating had a slight sweetness that balanced the savoury protein and creamy starch.

The service was a little haphazard, so much so that our bill was delivered without being asked about a second drink or dessert.


Enter your email address to subscribe to Tossed Salads and Scrambled Eggs and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 453 other followers

Categories

Archive

Creative Commons License
Tossed Salads and Scrambled Eggs is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
© 2011 Tossed Salads and Scrambled Eggs - all rights reserved