A Trip to the Pacific Northwest

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buffetbuster
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 10:33:49 (permalink)
Thank you to everyone for the nice comments.  And it seems that both 13 Coins and Dick's are popular with Roadfooders.  Dick's certainly seems like a place that should be reviewed here on the site.
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ScreamingChicken
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 11:00:22 (permalink)
buffetbuster

But, she did get a stomach ache shortly afterwards, which she attributed to eating it too fast.

 
buffetbuster

And thanks to Mariton, there will be LOTS of oysters coming up!


I hope there's no connection here!" />
#32
Ralph Melton
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 12:56:29 (permalink)
I always enjoy reading your reports. Thanks for posting this one. It's great to see all the places that we didn't manage to make it to.
 
However, I had an impression that your Thanksgiving plans involved Hob Nob Hill in San Diego. Did your plans change?
 
#33
buffetbuster
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 13:05:53 (permalink)
Thanks for the kind words RalphHob Nob Hill in San Diego was where we ate Thanksgiving dinner last year.
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hatteras04
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 13:32:39 (permalink)
That must be one helluva grilled cheese to be worth 54.50.
 
The price is right for the abuse though.
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ann peeples
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 15:48:27 (permalink)
Well, all I know is I am jonesing for the next leg of the report.
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SeamusD
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 16:11:55 (permalink)
Dick's is great, I also used to frequent Burgermaster on Northup Way in Bellevue, another drive in place.
 
I miss living out there, and regret not being able to get back for a visit since I left in 2002. I'm glad to see some things haven't changed.
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Michael Hoffman
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/12 16:55:46 (permalink)
Oh, to be in Western Washington again. Thanks for the great report.
 
Now if I could just get whatshername to move there instead of cold-butt Alaska ... .
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/13 14:24:21 (permalink)
Saturday November 26, 2011
 
I am an early riser and then put me on the West Coast and I am now waking up at 3:00 in the morning.  It would take us several days to adjust to the different time zone.  Meanwhile, we were the first customers at Julia's of Wallingford


when they opened at 7:00AM.  Julia's has been in some older Roadfood books but has appeared in the last few.  I really like the joie de vivre of the woman in the sign.  The inside is comfortable and casual

and the tables aren't too close to each other.
 
The menu seems to specialize in sweet breakfast items, such as pumpkin pie pancakes and a hot fudge sundae that includes buttermilk pancakes.  I went with the much more benign French toast l'orange, which also comes with orange butter and syrup. 

The bread was plenty thick and sure tasted homemade, but this may have been too much orange for me.  On the side, three strips of crisp bacon. 

Mariton, who makes much more of an effort to eat healthy than I do, went with oatmeal. 

Only on this menu, it is called Hot Scotch Oats.
 
Julia's
4401 Wallingford Avenue N
Seattle, WA
206-633-1175
 
One of the reasons we chose Julia's for breakfast was because another place we wanted to visit, Trophy Cupcakes is directly across the street.  But they don't open until 8:30AM on Saturdays, so we had time to kill.  Luckily, Mighty-O Donuts

is an easy 10 block walk away, so hoofed it in that direction.  Written up in the 500 Things to Eat book, the french toast cake donuts mentioned really caught my attention.  Unfortunately, they didn't have them this morning.  With lots of food plans for the day, we only four donuts and put in the car for snacking on later.
 
Mighty-O Donuts
2110 N. 55th Street
Seattle, WA
206-547-0335
 
By now, Trophy Cupcakes had opened their doors.  Located in a shopping center in what used to be an old school building,

this is the nicest cupcake store we have ever seen.  The cupcakes looked spectacular! 



We debated how many to buy, but since we were seen another Roadfooder the next day, we decided to buy a half dozen, enough to share.  Here is the roster of available cupcakes,

although there were others not on the list.  Our box

included a triple chocolate, triple coconut, lemon, red velvet, salty caramel and a chocolate peanut butter. 
 
Trophy Cupcakes
1815 N. 45th Street
Suite 209
Seattle, WA
 
It took great willpower on our part, but we also socked away the cupcakes in the car for later. 
 
Much more to come.....
post edited by buffetbuster - 2011/12/13 14:33:23
#39
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/13 14:32:13 (permalink)
SeamusD
Dick's is great, I also used to frequent Burgermaster on Northup Way in Bellevue, another drive in place.

Thanks for bringing this up.  We spotted the BurgerMaster, which seemed to be right near where we exited off 520 onto Bellevue Way, to head to the hotel.  We assumed it was part of a chain, but apparently that is incorrect.
#40
SeamusD
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/13 15:13:34 (permalink)
buffetbuster

SeamusD
Dick's is great, I also used to frequent Burgermaster on Northup Way in Bellevue, another drive in place.

Thanks for bringing this up.  We spotted the BurgerMaster, which seemed to be right near where we exited off 520 onto Bellevue Way, to head to the hotel.  We assumed it was part of a chain, but apparently that is incorrect.

 
There are 5 of them, so I guess you could actually call it a chain. I lived nearby and took some classes at Bellevue CC next door to it, so I went there more often than Dick's. Really good burgers.
If you'd gotten off in the Northup direction and traveled a mile east past Burgermaster, you'd have found yourself at Dixie's BBQ, a staple in that area. Anyone who has "met the man" won't soon forget it!
#41
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/13 15:25:28 (permalink)
Saturday November 26, 2011 cont.
 
We purposely decided we were just going to drive around on this day and explore the city.  With plenty of Roadfood stops, too, of course. 
 
Also mentioned in the 500 Things to Eat book is a place called Countryside Donut House in the north suburb of Mountlake Terrace.  It only took us about 20 minutes to get there, but we were disappointed to find this sign

hanging on the door.  This was at 9:30 in the morning and they were already sold out.  Impressive!  Somewhere, the Travelin Man is smiling.  Noticing that they open every morning at 4:30AM, I vowed to do better the next day.
 
By now, we were ready for an early lunch.  We went over the list of places in Seattle we could go to and when I mentioned a place well known for their fried chicken, Mariton's ears perked up.  She is an even bigger fried chicken lover than I am.  After a quick call to confirm that they were open, we were on our way to Ezzell's Famous Chicken


Some nice chicken art on the window.  In case you can't read it, the chicken is declaring, "I'm fresh, good and fast!" 
 
The inside looks like a typical fast food joint, other than the testimony from Oprah Winfrey. 

We asked and were told that she has mentioned how much she loves the chicken here on her show.  You get your choice of either traditional or spicy and we decided on a three piece mixture of the two. 


Like Michael Stern mentions in the review, the chicken here is not particularly juicy, but is still incredibly flavorful.  We just couldn't get enough of the crispy crust, especially the darker spicy version.
 
They were out of a couple sides we tried to order, but we settled on the peppery corn and the sweet baked beans. 

A very soft roll also comes with the meal.  The one misstep was the peach cobbler,

which tasted too prefabricated to me.  We just took a few bites before throwing it away.  Speaking of throwing it away, there are birds hanging around the parking lot, waiting for any leftovers. 

That seagull was so big, it scared away all the other birds.
 
Ezzell's Famous Chicken
501 23rd Avenue
Seattle, WA
206-324-4141
 
Finally ready to eat some dessert, we headed for another cupcake joint, Cupcake Royale.  The signage here is confusing, as the big sign outside says Verite Coffee. 

But, there is a smaller sign on the door that says Home of Cupcake Royale,

so we knew we were in the right place.  The inside has more of a coffee shop feel than that of a bakery.  The selection wasn't large, but we had already decided we were only going to get one each.  Mariton went for the Stumpton Tiramisu

and appreciated the fact that it wasn't overly sweet.  My peppermint bark

was much sweeter, with the chocolate cake part being deeply rich.  To wash it down, Mariton got a cup of coffee

and as you can imagine, she has been thoroughly enjoying the strong and delicious Seattle coffee.
 
Okay, now the embarrassing part.  Near the order counter is a tall stack of pretty pink boxes

with different sayings on it.  I noticed a few of them carried the message, Legalize Prostitution.  This struck me as quite odd and we both laughed about it.  I even made a Facebook post about it.  Later on, when I went back to look at my photos, I reread it and realized it actually said Legalize Frostitution. 

Yeah, those two things aren't exactly the same.   
 
Cupcake Royale
1101 34th Avenue
Seattle, WA
206-709-4497
 
Much more to come.....
post edited by buffetbuster - 2011/12/13 15:35:23
#42
The Travelin Man
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/13 15:30:23 (permalink)
I guess that depends on how much you're willing to pay???
#43
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/13 21:16:28 (permalink)
Or if it's outdoors in Chicago in January...
 
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/14 15:16:09 (permalink)
Saturday November 26, 2011 cont.
 
During an previous visit to Seattle, one of the dining highlights was Ray's Boathouse

Since I knew this was the type of place that would really appeal to Mariton, we made eating here a priority.  We showed up around 2:00PM for a late lunch, but that is too early for the nicer Boathouse part of the restaurant to be open.  But, just up the stairs is the more casual Ray's Cafe, which still affords you a nice view of the water.

 
So many items on the menu look enticing, it took some discussion and compromise to decide what to order.  Wish ChiTownDiner was with us, so we would have been assured of sampling everything!  Here is the list of appetizers,

which hopefully won't be too small to read.  Mariton started with the Seafood Combo Salad,

which contained Alaskan Bay shrimp, smoked salmon, smoked scallops, mussels, clams, cherry tomatoes and artichoke hearts.  This dish made her very happy, as did the fantastic bread. 

The waitress told us that these were sour dough potato rolls from Columbia City Bakery.
 
My meal started with a cup of thick clam chowder. 

Although this soup was fine, we agreed it was the least of the dishes on our table.  Next up was smoked salmon skewers,

which came with cucumber sesame relish and fresh pineapple.  The salmon was smoked in house and was delicious.  I came very close to stopping there, but told the waitress that we were thinking about either the mussels or the clams.  When she told us that we could combine the two and put them in the sauce of our choice, we jumped at it.  Here

is the Penn Cove mussels and Little Skookum Inlet Manila clams in a red curry and coconut milk broth.  The mussels and clams were unmistakably fresh, with the curry and coconut adding so much flavor.  This may have been the best dish we ate on the entire vacation.  Of course, Mariton gave me lots of help on finishing these off.
 
The interior of the cafe is tastefully decorated, with plenty of wood and glass 


and we liked the realistic looking wooden fish that seperates the kitchen from the dining area.  Even though you don't get the entire Ray's Boathouse full dinner menu to order from, this experience here at the Cafe might have been even better.
 
Ray's Cafe
6049 Seaview Avenue NW
Seattle, WA
206-789-3770
 
Immediately after leaving Ray's we saw this

interesting vehicle on the road.  Is that a 6 person bicycle?  By now, we noticed the traffic had started to pick up.  That evening, Seattle was hosting the annual Apple Cup football game between the University of Washington and Washington State.  We decided to make just one more stop before going back to the hotel and that was at a candy shop called Oh Chocolate


 
I asked about the hot chocolate mentioned in 500 Things To Eat, but the young lady who waited on us said they didn't have that, they just had sipping chocolate. 

With that, she gave me a small sample, and whew, this is some intense chocolate.  Not really sweet, just incredibly chocolatey.  I did ask for a whole cup, which she gave me with some whipped cream on top. 

As good as it was, it was still difficult for Mariton and I to drink the entire cup.
 
Next, it was time to pick out some chocolate candy. 

I asked for some graham crackers in dark chocolate,

raspberry truffles and the seasonal egg nog truffles. 

After I picked these out, she remembered that we were entitled to a couple free samples.  When I said we had enough, both the woman waiting on us and another customer asked why would we pass up a chance to try some of this very expensive chocolates for free.  Good question.  I asked for suggestions and they both highly recommended the peanut butter tiger butter

and the dark espresso truffle.  Needless to say, everything

we tasted was outstanding, with the creamy tiger butter being my favorite.
 
I should also mention how much we liked the young lady who waited on us.  As someone who hasn't been in Seattle very long, she had some interesting things to say about the city and the people (mostly good).  She was originally from Orange County and we couldn't believe how many ex-Southern Californians we encountered now living here.
 
Oh Chocolate
3131 E. Madison Street
Suite 100 
Seattle, WA
206-329-8777 
 
Back to the hotel for a nap!
 
Much more to come.....
post edited by buffetbuster - 2011/12/14 15:26:38
#45
Nancypalooza
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/14 16:55:25 (permalink)
Gorgeous Cliff!  Love that you got to Dick's--so you didn't pay the nickel for the little cup of shredded onions or you aren't an onion eater?  Ray's Boathouse looks amazing; if you made it to an Ivar's I'll be curious to see how you compare the two.
#46
ann peeples
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/14 17:42:49 (permalink)
All looks great so far, but Rays really caught my eye! Mariton wins with her choice.......
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/14 18:32:05 (permalink)
Oh Chocolate ... it is actually and outpost of the place on Mercer Island that has been there for at least 30 years.
I've had few to compare with their offerings.
#48
mr chips
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/14 21:17:35 (permalink)
Wow! What a wonderful array of places. I took in Trophy cupcakes with the wonderful Zataar, had a memorable meal with The Traveling  Man at Ray's and numerous meals at Dick's with the beautiful TrudyN. Loved Mike's Chile as well. You are really adding to your impressive list of roadfood eateries.
#49
mar52
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/14 22:05:14 (permalink)
This will be the third time I'm posting this:  (Warning you if it finally shows up)
 

Wonderful!  I love your choice of the coconut red curry sauce for your clams and mussels.  I think they should have left the lemon wedge in the kitchen for that one.
 
Sipping chocolate...awwwwww!
 
Great report!

 
 
 
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 08:28:58 (permalink)
I could spend a lot of money in a hurry at Ray's...I can only imagine what's on the dinner menu!
 
Brad
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buffetbuster
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 08:48:23 (permalink)
Thanks for the nice comments!
 
Brad-
Ray's is most definitely on the expensive side, especially the dinner menu.  But, I have always thought that you do get your moneys worth, which is what is more important.
 
Nancy-
Unfortunately, we never did get to Ivar's, so no comparison coming.  There is an Ivar's at the ferry dock in Mukilteo.  I was hoping to run in for a cup of chowder (which I had before and it was outstanding), but we arrived just before the ferry left, so there was no time.
#52
lleechef
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 10:37:33 (permalink)
bb, thanks for the lovely report and pictures.  Makes me homesick for the Pacific Northwest.  I would move there in an instant!
#53
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 11:00:24 (permalink)
In case people wonder why I post the trip report in such small segments, it is out of necessity.  On Tuesday night, I had a big, long section almost finished when my laptop froze, which ended up costing me several hours worth of work.  This is the only way I can do it and keep my sanity!
 
Saturday November 26 cont.
 
After a long nap in the hotel, there was some discussion where we should go back out again or not.  Ultimately, the lure of good Roadfood won out and we on our way north to Kirkland for a late meal at Spud Fish & Chips

One of the things I liked at Spud is the food doesn't come out too fast.  You place your order at the counter

and then they fry your fish, rather than it sitting around, waiting for a customer.
 
I was looking forward to trying the tiger shrimp the Sterns mention in the review, but they were out of them.  They recommended the buffalo shrimp instead, which sounded like good advice. 

The shrimp are on the small side, the the buffalo sauce was hot and flavorful.  Mariton did not care for them as much as I did, since she is more sensitive to salty foods.  Fish-wise, we started with a one piece fish and chips with halibut. 

The fillet was thin, extra crunchy and deliciously sweet.  I did order and extra side of tartar sauce on the side for .25 cents,

but we liked the excellent vinegar

on the tables even more.  A spritz of vinegar also went well on top of the fine french fries.
 
Still feeling like we needed to try more, I went back up and ordered a single piece of cod. 

It was oddly shaped, but this was even better than the halibut.  Being from Pittsburgh, where I think we make the best fried fish sandwiches in the universe, this would have been right up there with the best.
 
And we still haven't gotten to both of our favorite thing at Spud and that is the heavenly milkshakes. 

These shakes are extra thick and considering this was late in November, the raspberry shake sure did taste of fresh fruit.
 
Spud Fish and Chips
9702 NE Juanita Drive
Kirkland, WA
425-823-0607
 
Once back in the room, we snacked on the candy from Oh Chocolate and the donuts from Mighty-O

From left to right, that is a maple bar, chocolate raspberry, grasshopper and a cinnamon sugar, with the last one being the best.
 
Much more to come.....
post edited by buffetbuster - 2011/12/15 11:12:40
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buffetbuster
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 11:03:18 (permalink)
lleechef

bb, thanks for the lovely report and pictures.  Makes me homesick for the Pacific Northwest.  I would move there in an instant!

Lisa, did you used to live in Seattle, too?  You have lived in so many interesting and scenic places, I shouldn't be surprised.
#55
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 11:34:00 (permalink)
Buffetbuster
 
Your report is like a trip down memory lane. You hit all of my favorite spots- Julia's, and arguably one of my favorite breakfast spots in the country, the Maltby Cafe as well as
Ray's Boathouse and Dick's Drive In. In fact Dick's is where we used to go after a night of drinking in Pioneer Square or Capitol Hill. I'm really glad you finally made it to Spud's my "must go to" place whenever I'm Seattle.
 
Looking forward to more.
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 13:48:52 (permalink)
Sunday November 27, 2011
 
As usual, I was up way too early.  When Mariton showed no signs of stirring, I headed out to Countryside Donut House on my own.  Located in a small strip mall, a short distance from I-5, I was very happy to see lights on upon arrival around 6:00AM. 

That soon changed when I walked in and saw the cases practically empty. 

There was nobody up front, but I could here a lot of activity in the back.  It was a few minutes before they realized a customer was here, so I killed time rereading their mention

in the Stern's 500 Things To Eat book.
 
The man who came out was very apologetic, but it seems they overslept this morning and the donuts weren't ready yet.  I asked how long and he told me at least another 30 minutes.  Not having that long to wait, I bought a couple of old fashioned donuts, left over from the day before.  But, before I could leave, he mentioned he had some cake donuts just about done and he would be happy to ice them for me anyway I wanted.  We eventually settled on a coconut one for Mariton and a peanut butter one for me. 

The bag didn't get opened until I reached our room and the smell got Mariton out of bed.  She ate hers along with the coffee I grabbed in the lobby.  I got to tell you, the fresh, incredibly light, still warm cake donuts were the best I have ever had in my life.  And she agreed with me.
 
We got packed up, dressed and checked out of the hotel.  But before we left Seattle, we stopped for breakfast at Beth's Cafe

Beth's is a 24 hour a day diner that has been around since the 1950s.  No doubt, this place is very popular with the 2:00AM just left the bars crowd.  This place has an enjoyable sense of fun, which shows in their sign, which says "Handling Your Huevos Since 1954".  The inside is typical diner, with two dining rooms.  Both rooms are decorated in signs and drawings that Beth's customers creat on their own. 

There is paper and crayons/pens on each table if you are feeling creative.
 
Beth's claim to fame is their humungous 12 egg omelets. 

Sitting at a table next to us were six young guys, all taking on one of these monster omelets.  They were happy to let me snap photos of their half eaten breakfasts and even let me get a group shot. 

As near as I could tell, none of these guys were able to eat and entire own themselves, which is certainly no reason to hang your head in shame. 
 
The menus themselves are, shall we say, well worn.  And each of our menus had a different, cool, artistic cover.  This one

was mine.  My days of possibly eating a 12 egg omelet are long over and the only other size of omelet they have is a 6 egg.  I did give that some consideration, but we had a long day ahead.  I eventually settled on a more reasonable 3 egg Ham Scramble,

with sauteed ham and cheddar cheese. Honestly, there wasn't anything special about the ingredients, but some places just have a knack for making eggs and Beth's is apparently one of those places.  Nice crispy hashbrowns came on the side.  As for Mariton, it was more oatmeal,

with milk and brown sugar.  To drink, she usually gets coffee (she gave the strong coffee here a thumbs up) and water, while I get a large orange juice and water.  Noticing the impressive roster of milkshakes, I ordered a blueberry one. 

Unfortunately, this was the one item we didn't like.  It was too thin, had way too much whipped cream and really didn't taste very blueberryish.
 
To pass time while we were waiting for the food, Mariton started a drawing of her own, while I checked out all the ones already hanging.  There were a lot of strange ones, as you could expect and here are some of my favorite ones. 






And here is Mariton's contribution

to the wall and I think she did a nice job on it.
 
As we were almost finished with our food, a family of six behind us received their 12 egg omelet.  They started snapping photos of it, so I thought I should join in.  

I don't even think a 20 year old version of myself would be able to eat this entire thing.  They were also nice enough to send over a small sampling of it

and it was really good.
 
The service at Beth's was excellent and as you can tell, Mariton and I thoroughly enjoyed our experience here.  Still, I would like some kind of explanation of why the food here is so good.  

Ah, THAT explains it!
 
Beth's Cafe
7311 Aurora Avenue N
Seattle, WA
206-782-5588
 
We got back in the car and headed south towards Portland.
 
 
post edited by buffetbuster - 2011/12/15 19:36:53
#57
lleechef
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 15:57:56 (permalink)
buffetbuster

lleechef

bb, thanks for the lovely report and pictures.  Makes me homesick for the Pacific Northwest.  I would move there in an instant!

Lisa, did you used to live in Seattle, too?  You have lived in so many interesting and scenic places, I shouldn't be surprised.

 
Never lived in Washington or Oregon but have been through there many times.  Great eats!  But then, Alaska is pretty much as Pacific Northwest as you can get in the USA!

#58
drummagick
Cheeseburger
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2011/12/15 16:33:07 (permalink)
One of my fondest memories of growing up and living in Seattle until my mid-20s is shooting pool at the Eastlake Zoo Tavern until closing, and then going to Beth's Cafe  to split a 6 egg ham & cheese omelet with my pool partner of the evening.  The food there is incredible under those circumstances! :D
 
btw, the Eastlake Zoo Tavern is next door to the 14 Carrot Cafe
http://www.roadfood.com/R...iew/359/14-carrot-cafe
 
post edited by drummagick - 2011/12/15 16:38:38
#59
mr chips
Filet Mignon
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Re:A Trip to the Pacific Northwest 2012/01/16 22:25:11 (permalink)
I'm personally looking forward to hearing about the rest of your Sunday when you have time.
 
 
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