Seattle and Bainbridge

Seattle is awesome! I love the west coast laid back approach. After spending 4 years in Flagstaff, Az studying forestry at NAU I have been hooked ever since. This was my summer/fall vacation that I needed. We are headed into some really busy times and this little getaway helped me get my head straight and I brought a slew of ideas back with me for future dishes. Immediately we hit Garagiste and filled the back of my cousin's truck with cases of wine. Next off to the tourist capitol of Seattle, Public Market. This is where the fish are thrown, not saying I want my fish thrown but this is where it happens with tons of people taking pictures and enjoying the super fresh seafood fare. Dungeness crab as far as the eye can see, salmon, shellfish, butcher counters, Beecher's cheese shop, bakeries, you name it and it's here.

We were brought to Matt's in the Market for lunch. Lamb burger with a Bear Republic Racer 5 IPA did me right.

Gas Works park with a stunning view of Seattle followed.

Our friend Brad, an Orlando transplant, took us over to Capital Hill where he lives and showed us around. Literally across the street from his apartment was a restaurant called Monsoon. Heath Putnam of Wooly Pigs told me we should check this place out and see what they are doing with the mangalitsa that he provides. It was a great lunch and a small world we live in that a random recommendation and our original path landed us in the same place. Heath was their with his crew just the day before and I wish I could have caught up with him but it just didn't work out. We did however enjoy some conversation with our server and she knew well of him. Next time HP. We hit Elysian Brewery afterwards for an Immortal IPA that was awesome, what can I say, can't refuse a good IPA. Also toured around The Comet where Nirvana played before they were big. Lots of history here.

Jason, one of my line chefs knew I was in Seattle and text me to check out the Maximus and Minimus pig shaped food truck but it was closed as we went by. Next time for sure. Salumi was on the list as well, but every time we went by it was a 2 hour wait so Salumi will have to wait but I did score some Salumi bacon at Pegasus Coffee in Bainbridge that was part of one of their breakfast sandwiches.

Next we headed over to Bainbridge where my cousin lives off of Agate Point. The ferry ride over showed off some of the views.

Can't beat this driveway to their house if you tried.

Here is a picture of their house from the beach of the Puget Sound. Yes, I'm jealous.

Views from their property. Relaxing and beautiful, don't really need any other words to describe the view.

Getting the canoe ready for some "sound" exploration.

Here is our canoe access point, doesn't suck.

We had the awesome opportunity to visit the local CSA(community supported agriculture) at Butter Bean Farms. Our cousin provides an initial donation that is spread amongst several farms in the area that helps with seed and feed money. The farms then grow and produce their products. At certain times during their harvest goods are available here in Butter Bean Farms garage. It's an honor system, drive up their property, go in the garage, pick what you want, write it down and it is subtracted from your initial investment. Awesome to say the least.

Onions hanging from the rafters are just one thing on hand this visit.

Here is only part of the vegetable layout for todays harvest. Local wine, pickles, fresh eggs, pork sausage, meats of all kinds grown locally.

Back to the house and hit up the wood fired hot tub.

Some hammocks near the canoe landing to chill in.

Taking in the local plant life.

Wild berries growing everywhere.

Grand firs and cedars rule this area. This is a second or third growth grand fir, hard to tell. Most of Bainbridge was clear cut at the turn of the century and before to support San Francisco's growth. A natural area to harvest with it's sea faring ports. Now is a different story and preservation is key.

Wild flowers were popping everywhere just before the winter sets in.

This our pre-canoeing debacle in the sound picture. Yes, it's fuzzy. As is our memory at the time. What doesn't sound good about hauling a canoe across the tide flats at 1am and taking a ride to play glow in the dark bocee ball somewhere we shouldn't be. Needless to say we lost some wine, cava, and various other equipment, saved the bourbon though. Let's just say it was a good idea at the time, bad in retrospect, and walked away with a story to tell. You just won't hear it here.

Off to Poulsbo, a unique Norwegian fishing community just minutes north of Agate Point. The norwegians settled here because it reminded them of the fjords in Norway and I can see why.

The Central Market in Poulsbo is ridiculous! The most intense shopping experience period. Live dungeness in river like flowing tanks, huge oysters from hood canal and totten inlet harvested just minutes away. This is a shot of the produce section that set me back a minute. Everything is perfect! They really take care of their products. An in house bakery, butcher, cooking demos, cooked to order take away, you name it this is the greatest grocery store I've ever seen. It's hard to come back to Florida and compare what we have to this place.

When I say they have everything I mean it. Fresh cactus, aloe branches, you name it.

For our last endevour we headed off to Tilth, the 95% organic restaurant on the out skirts of Seattle. 95% only because the wild foraged foods they use are not regulated by the FDA so it's pretty safe to say that everything they use is organic. We had an awesome meal and met with Sous Chef Jason afterwards and exchanged some stories. They are doing great things here and if you are ever in Seattle you should take some time out to witness it.

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