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Agrodolce – Seattle, WA

Located in the old 35th Street Bistro spot in Fremont, Agrodolce has knocked it out of the park!  The atmosphere is welcoming and charming and our server couldn’t have been more enjoyable which was very refreshing.

The food was to die for!  I seriously would go back tonight for the exact same meal I ate last night.  We started with the burrata with beets, a citrus honey gastrique and mint…as delicious as I expected!  For my main course I chose the ricotta ravioli with roasted garlic, green garlic and stinging nettle.  Everything about this dish was perfect!  You would have thought I had licked my plate based on how clean it was at the end of the night.  Do yourself a favor and go get this before they take it off the menu.We also got the seared broccoli, kale and brussels sprouts to share…all of which I would order again.  For dessert we got the rice pudding fritters with a citrus honey, vanilla dipping sauce and powdered sugar.  Nothing to complain about there!

Something notable about Agrodolce is how organic the menu is.  It took us a bit to realize that the few things on the menu that are unlined are those ingredients that are NOT organic.  Just to be clear, there are hardly any.  Pretty impressive!  Not to mention on the reverse side of the menu there are vegan and gluten free options.  This isn’t something I’ve seen yet in Seattle but I think it will soon catch on.

Overall, Maria Hines has outdone herself and I can’t wait to go back!

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Harvest Vine – Seattle, WA

Harvest Vine has long been a favorite of mine in Seattle – but under specific conditions.  If I can’t sit on the top floor of the restaurant, I’d rather just go back another time.  I know that might sound picky of me but if you’ve been there before then I think you can understand where I’m coming from.  The bottom section of the restaurant doesn’t have nearly the same appeal that the top section does.  The best seat in the house (in my opinion) is at the bar where you’ve got a front row seat to all the action.  It’s like watching a symphony right in front of your eyes but rather than instruments being played the chefs sing and whistle while plating gorgeous dishes from the smallest and cutest little sauté pans that you’ve ever seen.

During the summer on warm nights the garage door walls are rolled up and you’re able to fully enjoy a beautiful Seattle summer night.  It’s a great spot year round and should definitely be on the top of your list if you haven’t already been there.

If you’re a beet fan definitely get the beets to start.  You’ll want to sop up all the yummy olive oil and vinegar with bread once the beets are gone.  If mushrooms are on the menu get those for sure!  You really can’t go wrong here.  I’m always amazed at the wonderful creations the make and each time I go back there’s a new menu.

Plato de Boquerones – vinegar cured anchovies with anchovy stuffed olives & piparra peppers

Remolachas – red & golden beets, olive oil, sherry vinegar & garlic

Coliflor – roasted cauliflower with onion confit & olive oil

Coles de Bruseles – brussels sprouts with béchamel, tomato frito & bread crumbs

Vieriras – seared scallops with fingerling potatoes & scallop reduction

Pulpo – grilled octopus with garbanzo bean puree

Bacalao Ahumado – smoked, salt-cod with grilled spring onions & hazelnut romesco

Flan de Almendras – spanish style toasted almond custard

Tarta de Queso de Cabra – creamy goat milk cheese cake with honey poached rhubarb & strawberries

North Bondi Italian Food – Sydney, Australia

Owned by the same people as Icebergs, North Bondi Italian Food (located in North Bondi:)), doesn’t take reservations and is very popular so you need to get there early to put your name in.  But it’s worth it!  The restaurant itself is lively, young and a fun place to end the day with drinks and yummy Italian food.  And let’s not forget about the view…stunning beach view, toned surfing bodies, sunset…doesn’t get much better than that!

To start we got the Beet Salad with goat cheese, spring onions, and beet juice…deilcious!  I’d love to recreate this at home for guests.  The beet juice drizzled on top was so pretty and accentuated the distinctive beet flavor that I love.  For my entrée, my eyes immediately caught the Spaghetti “Arrabbiata” Crab – cooked in a paper bag…what?!  Arrabbiata is one of my favorite Italian pastas and overall I was just curious.  I have before and after photos below of the presentation…clever.  It was interesting eating out of a bag but the flavors were there and I loved the addition of crab…yum!  I would definitely get this again.  My mom got the Pork Schnitzel which was incredible.  So tender and juicy.  The breading was crispy and not too heavy.  If you like schnitzel, this is a winner!

For sides we got the crispy garlic and rosemary potatoes…whoa…those were good!  And the steamed broccoli with garlic and chili.  I always have to have some green in my meal.  It wasn’t anything crazy but exactly what I wanted and very good.

Overall I really liked this spot and if I lived there I would go here often, assuming I could get in:)  I think this restaurant is perfect for many occasions and situations – birthday get togethers, girls night out, date night, etc.

Wayfare Tavern – San Francisco, CA

Earlier this year while my mom and I were visiting San Francisco we had dinner at Tyler Florence’s Wayfare Tavern.  The atmosphere embraces exactly what I miss about SF, the lively energy not to mention a lot of really pretty people to stare at:)  It was bustling on a week night and after eating there I know exactly why.  The food was perfectly executed and delicious!!!  Rather than just your standard bread and butter or oil, you’re treated to a warm freshly baked popover which I could have eaten a dozen of.

My favorite part of the meal was my starter, the Roasted Organic Beets served with winter citrus aioli, goose berries, avocado mousse and quinoa.  YUM!!!

If you live in SF or are going to visit this should definitely be a place you try at least once.  Be sure to get reservations!

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