Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Palace Kitchen mid-week

So, as I mentioned in a previous post, I found myself in Seattle last Wednesday night feeling rather hungry and only one block from Palace Kitchen. I'd been once before for late-night drinks and snacks (if you're looking for a place to get food, they serve their full menu until 1am, and have great appetizers or full meals).

I went in and sat at the bar since I was on my own. I was immediately struck by how busy the place was - for a Wednesday night, that's pretty unusual. The place was buzzing, with a mixture of businessmen and couples at the bar, tables of young hipsters, and a lively crew of staff keeping everything running smoothly.

One of the great things about this place is that the kitchen is really part of the show - especially at the bar. The kitchen is completely open, with not even much of a counter seperating it from the main eating area. The bar makes an island in the middle of the restaurant and serves to hide some of the kitchen bustle if you sit on the far side of it, but seated at the bar itself, you can watch the chefs cook, the barmen mixing drinks, runners filling pitchers, waiter punch in orders... I had a great time watching all of this - it reminded me a little of Hell's Kitchen but without the 4-letter words! :)

I had a great glass of white wine from France. (Sorry, I don't remember exactly what it was)
I started out with the goat-cheese fondue. This is a yummy appetizer to share, but was a little off the mark this time. The grilled bread was a little charred in places, and I thought the sliced apple really didn't work too well with the goat cheese. 3/5 for this dish.

I then tried a dish best described as an ode to late summer: Sweet corn custard and white corn cake, chanterelle mushrooms and cherry tomatoes. The corn cake was sweet and crispy, topped with some fresh corn kernels. The corn custard was amazing - soft, smooth and silky and deeply infused with the flavour of corn. Overall this dish rated 4.5/5 in my book.

An added bonus: The barman (who served me) realized I had waited a long time (not that I mineded - I was having such a good time watching the show all around me). He decided to give me my appetizer for free, so the evening was really good value.

I hope to back again in the not-too-distant future!

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