Sunday, July 12, 2009

Crow - Seattle

I’ve had my eye on Crow since I first made my ever-growing Seattle restaurant list. It’s a cozy, yet sophisticated neighborhood restaurant in Seattle’s Lower Queen Anne. After trying to go for lunch a few weeks ago (they are only open for dinner), we finally arrived for an early Sunday night dinner.

We opted for a seat at the Chef’s Counter where you can watch the kitchen in action. It’s definitely the seat for those that like to see the prepping, preparing, and plating that goes on behind the scenes. Plus, you get a first-hand glace of what you might like to order.

The Men of the Kitchen

Bread with Olive & Balsamic Dipping Sauce

We started with the Dungeness Crab Salad. It’s a salad of Bibb lettuce topped with about a cup of Dungeness Crab meat and lots of ripe mango cubes. Mango goes with seafood like peanut butter goes with jelly, so of course the combination of flavors were spot on. I loved that they were so generous with the toppings. You could definitely order this as a meal and be completely satisfied.
Dungeness Crab Salad

Not far behind were the Kushi Oysters from British Columbia. They are sold individually, so we ordered two each. These small oysters were presented over a bed of rock salt to keep them upright, which keeps the brine in the shells. The mignonette was a little lackluster, but I always enjoy eating oysters regardless. Dear Ben and I like to “cheers” our oyster shells; I feel like you should celebrate the little things in life. You could also celebrate the oysters during happy hour – they are $1.00 off!

Kushi Oysters from B.C.

Dear Ben and I split the housemade lasagne and beef tenderloin for our main course. The beef was topped with grilled Walla Walla Onions (it’s the Pacific NW’s version of the Vidalia) and served over a large chopped salad dressed with blue cheese. The salad had much more complexity as I began eating, and you can imagine my surprise when I bit into a potato! That’s right, boiled Yukon Gold potato chucks were incorporated into the chopped salad. What a great take on meat and potatoes. I prefer a thicker steak, but perhaps there’s a method to their madness since it’s more of a steak salad.

Beef Tenderloin with Chopped Salad and Walla Walla Onions
A Steak in Waiting...

The lasange is one of the best we’ve had in Seattle. It’s filled with Italian Sausage, but it’s the layer of pesto that popped in my mouth. Extra sauce was spooned onto the plate and garnished with more parmesan and fresh herbs. I read one person’s review stating that every lasagna that came out of the kitchen was burned. I agreed that it may have looked burned, but it certainly did not have a burned flavor. I believe it’s the pesto that turns dark in the oven. I actually quite enjoyed that top layer!

House made Lasagne with Italian Sausage

In addition to our main courses, we ordered the only two side dishes, green beans and smashed potato cake. Also listed on the sides are kids noodles, but I don’t really consider that a side. The whole green beans were sautéed in oil and shallots, and they were really tasty. I needed some vegetables in my life. The potato cake was basically skin-on mashed potatoes formed into a patty. When you order it, they cover it in bread crumbs and bake it. It was a clever presentation, something a bit different.

Green Beans a la Crow

Smashed Potato Cake

We took a look at the dessert menu to see if there was something we couldn’t live without, and there was. Dear Ben and I agreed on the Chocolate Carmel Tart with Olive Oil Gelato. The individual tart had a fresh buttery crust filled with a nice layer of gooey caramel and topped with a thick chocolate that is something similar to Momma’s Chocolate Pie. Salt crystals sprinkled on top made me so happy. I love a salty chocolate flavor, and it wasn’t too overpowering for skeptics of this combination. The olive oil gelato was a cool accompaniment. This dessert was a perfect taste to end a great Sunday night meal. As a side note, Friend Jeff says that you can pour olive oil on ice cream and it will harden like Magic Shell. Anyone tried this?

Chocolate Carmel Tart with Olive Oil Gelato

Crow was just what the doctor ordered on the first Sunday night of my summer in Seattle. It’s the epitome of my impression of Seattle: unpretentious and casual, with an obvious love for the good things in life… food, of course, being one of them.

….and those are my Notes from the Napkin!

825 5th Avenue N
Seattle, Washington 98109

Crow on Urbanspoon

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