Tag Archives: Gastronomic

Seattle Part 10: A visit to my alma mater

Many people say, and many people would concur that the Spring and Summer in the Pacific Northwest is hard to beat. I remember being absolutely in love with the weather during those seasons and then absolutely hating it during the winters. In fact, it was the seemingly, perpetual gloom that convincingly made me return to sunny (and blazing hot) Southern California.

When my wife and I decided to visit Seattle, the weather decided to kindly remind us of how truly supreme it is. Combine the absolutely, sublime weather with the gorgeous backdrop of my alma mater, you’ll have a formula for an unforgettable experience.

UW-Rainier-View.jpgThis duck bridge was not around when I was scrambling to make it to class. I think it’s a great idea. The ducks loved Drumheller. Duck-Bridge.jpgJust a tiny sample of the architecture you’re eyes will feast upon when walking around campus. UW-Architecture.jpgA visit to the campus wouldn’t be complete without a visitation to “Hogwarts library” as it is unofficially known. Suzallo-Library.jpgOn the menu for the day was a local favorite, Thai Tom’s. It’s strategically located on the Ave, which is the main street located adjacent to the campus where you can find all the great eateries. I remember my first experience at Thai Tom’s. I don’t think I’ve ever had Thai food prior to that moment, but me being in college I thought that I might as well be adventurous and give it a try. It would be a decision that I would come to be very grateful for. It’s quickly and simply, prepared food that packs a boatload of flavor. It’s also very easy on the wallet, which is always a plus. You go in to a very cozy space, sit, order, and enjoy your well-crafted meal. Just be prepared to sweat, not only because of the heat level of the dish (1-5 stars), but mainly because of your proximity to the flames. Thai-Tom-Flames.jpgA Thai salad was one order of ours. To our surprise it came with some potato chips! It was sweet, salty, and spicy all-in-one. The sauce was freshly made on one of the burners, so it ended up being a warm salad. Thai-Salad.jpgGrill and serve it.Thai-Tom-Serving.jpgA scoop of rice alongside noodles with oodles of flavor is never a bad thing. Just note that there is no beef served at this restaurant. No problem though, because the chicken that they cook up here will do just fine. Pad Kee Mao | Pad See Ew.



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Filed under Seattle, Thai food, Travels

Seattle Part 6: Boat Street Kitchen

An absolute gem of a brunch spot. When you say “brunch”, I think “eggs Benedict”. I’m an absolute sucker for eggs Benedict. That moment when you take your knife and cut across the poached eggs to let out that sequestered liquid gold is what keeps bringing me back. So, when I learned that this place makes a good eggs Benny, I couldn’t turn down an opportunity to eat there. If you want to as well, make sure you make reservations. The eggs Benedict is customizable in that you can add whichever additional protein you want to it. I opted for the smoked salmon.

This take on a classic breakfast choice was sublime. Eggs were perfectly poached. The bread that supported it all was perfectly crisp. The smoked salmon rounded everything out and reminded you that you’re eating a perfect brunch in Seattle. The salad was well dressed and not too heavy. The sweet mandarins were a great ending to everything.



Julia-Childs-Boat-Street-cafe.jpgBoat Street Kitchen and Cafe – 3131 Western Ave, Ste 301, Seattle, WA

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Seattle Part 5: Staple and Fancy

I have to apologize for not having enough pictures for this place. It was dinner and the restaurant is normally, dimly lit, which is never conducive for good photos. A good friend of mine joined us for dinner this night and was even kind enough to treat us out to Staple and Fancy’s tasting menu. I have to say that Chef Ethan Stowell’s thinking in the progression of this tasting menu was indeed well planned out. From the starter of prosciutto drizzled in rich olive oil to the end with what may be considered a modern take on a surf and turf was truly a great experience. On a side note, he also owns another restaurant named Tàvolata, which has an absolutely phenomenal happy hour. You’d be truly mad to miss that one. I hope to go back there and take some pictures for you all the next time around!

So, all I have for you is the main course of beef and fish. I’m a big beef person. I joke that I would be the saddest person in the world without meat. Ironically, I preferred the fish dish (halibut). It was light and tender, but flavorful. The fiddle heads also reminded me of Washington and also provided a nice textural element to the dish. It was the better executed dish because of how each individual element complemented each other so well. Of note, the only course that I didn’t like in the tasting menu was the salad course. It came out drenched in dressing. Additionally, it just didn’t impress.


Staple and Fancy – 4739 Ballard Ave NW
Seattle, Wa 98107

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Quintessential Rain Food

I live in Southern California, a land where rain almost seems like an oddity. Some welcome it when it comes…others freak out on the freeways and go 50 MPH. Suddenly, some of the craziest (or worst or the most frustrating – however you wanna look at it) drivers in the nation become the most paranoid, docile drivers on the road. I went to undergrad in Seattle where rain is an unfortunate commonplace in the daily lives of those who inhabit the Evergreen State, so it doesn’t trouble me. Despite the driving qualms, I love the fact that there are certain foods that fulfill the soul, stomach, and mind like a satisfying, warm bowl of soup – this time around, it’s pho, a Vietnamese noodle dish (well, technically bowl) filled with thin noodles that swim in a delightful beef broth that has been stewing for who knows how long. This is what it looks like my friend.

The Total Package

What You Get

Once this heart-warming concoction arrives in front of you, you do what my friend does…

This is what you can do to your bowl

I typically add Hoisin Sauce (a.k.a Oyster Sauce), which is a thick sauce that is primarily sweet. For some much needed kick I highly recommend the almost obligatory Srichachachachachacha, otherwise known as Rooster Blood (It’s not really blood). Sip, taste, let those thoughts marinade for a bit, and then…

Good times!

if it tastes good this is hopefully how you feel, just on the inside cause if you were to show this to those next to you,then I’m sure they wouldn’t be having good times.

On this particular rainy day, I travelled out to Westminster/Garden Grove, to an area called Little Saigon to a place named Pho 79. I don’t know why and how the numbers are there, they just are. Let’s forget the name and focus on the food! This bowl comes to you steaming as if to tantalize your sense of smell first to tease you and let you know that yes, it’s a good bowl of pho. You have to hold back your animalistic instincts to just dig in immediately. Remember, you gotta put all those extras in. Well, you don’t really have to, but you might as well experience it. Then again, you can just sneak a sip to provide temporary gratification. Once seasoned properly with the Hoisin + Sriracha, you take that first (if you were good) dip into the soup. Remember those Campbell’s commercials where the spoon just stays up next to their face, eyes closed, a slight grin, and that vocal “Mmmm…”? Well, you’ve just encountered the Asian version, my friend. But, you’re not done just yet! Those noodles are there! Oh my! There’s meat also!? The trifecta just blasted your mind. You slurp, sip, and “Mmmm” your way to the bottom of that bowl. Then comes that satisfactory kick back into your chair, the pat on your tummy, and those famous words, “Ooof…I’m so full”.

The oh-so suttlely sweet, but predominantly savory (thank you MSG) broth has fully taken over. The tender bits of flank steak that may be accompanied by soft bits of tendon (or in my case, also accompanied by tripe) give you your protein requirements. The perfectly cooked noodles give you that carbo load that’s prevalent across all forms of gastronomic adventures. To balance it all out, you have some veggies in there. A completely satisfying meal.

Here’s the place I went to if you ever want to try it out.

Pho 79 ***NOTE that this is the HAZARD location. NOT the Bolsa location***

9941 Hazard Ave
Garden Grove, CA 92643

Service: 8/10

Value: 9/10

Ambiance: 6/10

Taste: 9/10

Mind-blasting factor: 8/10

If I had to…I’d give it a 4/5 overall.

Been there? Let me know what you think! Any other recommendations? They don’t have to be pho. What do YOU like to eat on a rainy day?

Thanks for stopping by. God bless. Happy eating. Remember to share.

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