We miss dining out! It makes us happy. We get out of the house, experience new and delicious foods, relax and socialize with friends and family, meet new friends, and the cook gets a break! All of these can have a great impact on your mood and your health. We are so lucky to that some of our favorite restaurants have been here for us and we do not take them for granted.
Our favorite neighborhood restaurant, Mercato Stellina, is just 5 minutes from our house. They make the best pizza! Our son Scott said (choke choke), it was better than mine! The owner and manager, Drew, knows his customers well. He probably orders their pizza when he sees them walking in the door, knowing what they like! The menu is small, but everything is delicious. The meatballs in marinara are perfection! We had a meatball tasting with friends (I won’t tell you who was in the competition), but Mercato Stellina won! I usually order two orders so I can make meatball sandwiches with the leftovers. My Mom’s meatballs were not in the competition because that would be unfair – her recipe is the best!
Also on the East side, Flo Japanese Restaurant is at the top of our list of favorites. We can always count on delicious, sushi and sashimi, incredible tempura, and perfect service from our friends Jia and Steve Mooko who know how to make their guests feel special. The fish is always perfectly fresh and the tempura crisp and light. They have an extensive menu and plenty of choices even if your dining companion(s) don’t eat sushi. The braised short ribs are a favorite.
Most Friday nights, we dine at Spinasse Restaurant in Seattle or at their Artusi Bar. This is by far the best Italian restaurant in Seattle. They specialize in food from our favorite region in Italy, Piemonte and execute to perfection. Chef Stuart Lane and General Manager/Sommelier Angela Lopez do a fantastic job! And the wine list is phenomenal. But I would be remiss to not mention the entire staff who have really become “family”. We have been dining there for over 10 years since they first opened. It is like being in Italy! There is a special place in our hearts (and our stomachs) for Spinasse!
Harvest Vine, a Basque restaurant in Seattle, is another of our favorites. We have been a fan of Chef Joey’s for 25+ years. We love the small plates of authentic Basque cuisine that allow us to taste lots of things – all of them delicious! Harvest Vine is one of the few restaurants in the area that serves octopus, one of our favorites. It is always cooked to perfection. The desserts, some of the best in the city, are heavenly.
We can only hope when things get back to normal, the restaurants we love will still be around to seat us.