Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Seattle Restaurant Week: Our Grand Finale {Quinn's}

We had the best of intentions. Really, we did. The plan was simple. Choose a Seattle Restaurant Week location, go there, enjoy the 3/$25 special, have a couple of drinks, come home. As usual, though, Quinn's SRW options did look good, but there were even more tempting choices. In our defense, we had more success this year than in years past... meaning we actually succeeded in taking advantage of one SRW prix fixe menu (How to Cook a Wolf).
We arrived at Quinn's about 5:30 tonight given they're another Seattle staple known for not accepting reservations and I haven't forgotten our How to Cook a Wolf experience from last week.
There were a few people already seated when we arrived, but they weren't super busy yet. We've been to Quinn's more than a few times and always enjoy it. Their food is the quality of many high end Seattle restaurants in a more laid back, gastropub setting. The combination of exposed brick, dark wood and rustic art on the walls is cozy and comfortable. There is always a carafe of water on the table when you are seated, but since our last visit, something changed. In place of the traditional water carafes, there were a variety of recycled whiskey bottles filled with water on the tables. Given B's love of bourbon and his home state of Kentucky, we were happy to see that our water carafe was a beautiful recycled Jefferson 's bourbon bottle.

One aspect of Quinn's that confuses me a bit is the strong French influence in their food given the distinct Irish feeling to their decor and the whiskey and beer flavor to their bar. This isn't a criticism, mind you. If anything, I appreciate the fact that Quinn's isn't stuck in a box created by a general theme. Instead, they've based their space on warmth and hospitality while allowing their menu to branch out beyond pub fare and take on a life and personality of its own.

As usual, we ordered too much and most of my main course is now in a neatly packaged container in my fridge. On our menu tonight were the Spicy Fried Peanuts, Rillette de tête (pig tête, if you're curious) and Salt Cod Fritters to start. B had the Crispy Skin Chicken with green beans and boulangerie potatoes and I had the Slow Roasted Pork Ribs with bourbon barbeque and creamed corn with bacon.  For dessert, we had the Hazelnut Bar with Pear Ice Cream.
 Spicy Fried Peanuts - B lives for these peanuts
 Saltcod Fritters - Very good, but not as amazing as Cicchetti
 Rillette de tête - Pig's tête (head) - B ate it. I was proud.
 Crispy Skin Chicken with green beans and boulangerie potatoes
 Terrible photo, amazing bourbon BBQ pork ribs
 Creamed corn with bacon
Hazelnut Bar with Pear Ice Cream

Our drinks tonight were also a unique experience.  I had a Slippery Pig (Pompero Rum, hot apple cider, butter and BACON). B had a La Pistole Fumante (Bulleit bourbon, Cynar, Vya Dry and Laphroig Cask).
 Slippery Pig - Quinn's take on a Hot Buttered Rum - Tasty and you only really get the bacon as an aftertaste, but I could never have more than one.
La Pistole Fumante- Bourbon and Scotch in one glass. Strong doesn't quite express it.

Great meal.  No doubt about that. I can't say I'm particularly thrilled that all my favorite places are now driving distance instead of walking distance (Quinn's, Book Bindery, Marjorie, Local Vine...), but we're starting to get the hang of the whole street parking bit... or at least B is. I don't drive with him in the car. He's the worst backseat driver ever.

You've got 2 days left in Seattle Restaurant Week. Do yourself a f(l)avor. Pick one or two places out of the list of 100 and GO!!! Even if you end up doing what we usually do (choosing something totally different off the menu), it's worth it. I fully support leaping out of your culinary comfort zone.

Quinn's on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. I am so hungry right now! That creamed corn with bacon just about pushed me over the edge.

    Well written "review" and very thoughtful. Liked how you called out the contrast of the French & Irish influences and seeming contrast.