Anonymous asked:

Does the food in South Africa taste good? Can we get a review of Lindi's cooking?

I’ve been eating out a lot… In Lindi’s defense, she’s 8 months pregnant.

A couple of us have made reservations at the best restaurant in Africa though (12th on the San Pellegrino 50 Best Restaurants of the World Awards). Should be quite tasty!

Full in Seattle

Every great city has its flaws. New York has the crowds (among other things), San Francisco has the fog, and Seattle has the rain. Even though my time in Seattle didn’t grant me picturesque scenery of the surrounding Olympic Mountain Range, it made me realize that something can be learned from the cold and often dreary city; everything tastes better in the cold. 

I hope to have the chance to return in the near future. It’s well worth the trip if you’re trying to get your fill. 

The Other Coast Cafe

Recommended by - Caffé Fiore barista

Address - 5315 Ballard Ave NW and 721 E Pike St., Seattle

Website - http://othercoastcafe.com

Order - Rajin Cajun 

Cost - $8.65

After the stop at Caffé Fiore, it was over to The Other Coast Cafe for a hot sandwich. The barista at Fiore recommended the Rajin Cajun, so I had to oblige. The cafe had the feel of a chowder house, fitting with its proximity to the water front. No frills and a very simple seating arrangement with an open preparation area. The focus was on the food.

The Rajin Cajun is served toasted on a baguette with Cajun turkey, pepper jack cheese, tomato, and their special spicy Mango Salsa. Warning: the sandwich was spicy, but not overpowering. I recommend this sandwich even if you have a low tolerance for spicy food. Grab a cold drink!

The Rajin Cajun is just what the soul needs on a dreary afternoon. 

Caffé Fiore

Recommended by - lady who gave me a haircut

Address - 5405 Leary Ave NW

Website - http://caffefiore.com/

Order - large Sevilla and Morning Glory Muffin

I thought that I’d really test the recommendation plan by asking a complete stranger, so I took the opportunity during my haircut. The haircut wasn’t the best, but it was well worth it since she recommended Caffé Fiore. I went to the Old Ballard location (they also have cafes in Queen Anne, Sunset Hill and West Seattle).

The interior had a warm vibe with the ambers and dark browns contrasted against the lighter oak table tops. All of the light fixtures were bare bulbs, each seeming to melt from their cast iron frames. Although the fixtures gave off a comfortable light, they could have gone with fewer lights; less is more. 

Caffé Fiore is known for its Sevilla, a mocha with orange zest. I played it safe and ordered a large Sevilla with a morning glory muffin. The Sevilla was served at the perfect temperature; hot, but not scolding. Orange against the the espresso and bitter chocolate made for a delicious combination. To top it off, I was lucky enough to catch the morning glory muffin right out of the oven. 

If you’re looking for a tasty twist on a mocha, Caffé Fiore is the place to go. The inviting atmosphere and the tasty baked goods makes for a great hideaway from the dreary Seattle winter. Well worth the trip out to Old Ballard.

Paseo

Recommended by - friend

Address - 4225 Fremont Ave N

Website - http://www.paseoseattle.com/

Order - Cuban Roast and Cup of Black Beans

Cost - $11.50

Paseo is the type of place that, when you see the shabby set up, you know you’re in for either a really bad meal or a really good meal. Thankfully I got the latter. The restaurant looks like it was plucked off of a Caribbean island with its corrugated plastic and steel exterior.

Inside, the kitchen took up about 3/4 of the area. This, along with the customers standing in wait for their food and a table, made for cramped seating, but it seemed as though the close quarters only added to the customers’ anticipation; eyes fixed on the action in the kitchen, noses trained on the caribbean aromas, and mouths watering. 

Being my first time, I went with what the restaurant is most famous for, the Cuban Roast (and I couldn’t say no to a hot cup of black beans on a cold, dreary day). The sandwich was served up on a fresh baguette with a mayonnaise sauce, greens, and sauteed peppers and onions. A simple combo, which was put over the top by the tender marinated pork shoulder. Warning - the sandwich was a bit of a mess, but well worth the greasy fingers. If you’re on a date, order something a little more manageable. 

Seattle may be giving San Francisco a run for its foodie title…

Stumptown Coffee Roasters

Recommended by - father

Address - 616 E Pine, Seattle

Website - http://stumptowncoffee.com/

Order - large Mocha and a Cornmeal Blueberry Muffin

Stumptown Coffee Roasters is tucked away in a cozy space just below the community theater on E Pine. In contrast to Victrola’s artistic vibe, Stumptown had a notable academic incumbent. To my left was a discussion about senior theses, and, while I was in line, the pair behind me were talking over their group project. This shouldn’t be a surprise as Seattle University is a short walk away.

Stumptown’s interior really made for a worthwhile experience. Across from me were a series of blown up still frames from a film that captured the coffee bean farming process, only adding to the feeling of authenticity. The barista area was the main focus of the cafe, as it should be. It took roughly half of the shop’s total area; it wasn’t too crowding, it showed where the priority should be. The tables were set up in pairs along with two sets of seats at counters mounted on the two front windows. In total, there was seating room for 20. The interior was well done, but what really brought it all together was the music. At the back of the barista’s area, there was an old vinyl record player blaring off classics like Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. How can you not enjoy yourself when The Beatles are in the air? 

The cornmeal blueberry muffin was the best blueberry muffin I had all week. Each bite was met with three tasty layers: the crusty sugared top, the buttery smooth middle, and the juicy blueberries. The muffins were cooked to perfection. You can tell this, particularly with blueberry muffins, if the berries still hold their structure and the middle has the same consistency as the sides. 

The mocha was very average. It was served luke warm and the use of chocolate syrup was noticeable with each sip. An upside of the drink was how it was served - in a beer glass. Stumptown paid great attention to detail in order to provide an enjoyable experience, but I would not recommend to go for the mocha. Their original blends may be worth trying though. In the spirit of the week of recommendations, I’d say, simply ask the barista for their favorite drink and go with it.