Monday, April 9, 2007

oh, what a perfect day [Lockspot Cafe]

it's soooo saturated

Yes, the perfect day is lunch from the Lockspot, at the locks, in the sun. I don't think it gets better. Life peaked at lunch last Friday; it's all down hill from here.

Lockspot Cafe on Urbanspoon

You might think that I'm exaggerating. Annnd, you'd be right. But it was the high point of the week. Seriously. Lunch, outside with flowers and boats? Seriously. High point. Seriously. Especially since Friday was one of the first days that really felt like spring.

simple, to the point, sponsored by snapple

Lunches at the Spot Stand are basic. Fried fish. Fried potatoes. Malt vinegar or ketchup in individual packets. One plastic condiment cup full of tartar sauce. It's on the cheap end* of Seattle food. Since it's a bit of a dive, that's all right and proper.

It hits the spot. The Lockspot!

It's not what I'd call healthy food. It's deep fried everything. As much as you might want to, you probably shouldn't go every day. So don't move in to those apartments across the street, because you will go every day!

and the sammich form

Oh, wait. It can be healthy. The sandwich comes with lettuce, maters and onion. That totally negates the deep friedness of everything else. In fact it makes the fries burn calories. That's 100% fact. Also, I have some ocean front property in South Dakota. I'll sell it to you for a song.

hey guys, is that my lunch you got on that boat?

I suppose I should mention that there is a dining room too. And you can go sit in your silly low backed western bar chair, under the shade of a carven wooden seaman and eat the same food you get at the stand. You'll look out across 54th street at the Taco Time and it will feel like vacation. But it won't feel as much like vacation as taking your fish out to the locks and watching the fishermen bring your next meal home.

*Anything under ten bucks counts as cheap in this town. Unless you consider taco bell. Which I don't.

[update: More pictures]

Wednesday, April 4, 2007


McMenamins Queen Anne location sits in a nondescript condo building surrounded by Seattle Center parking lots. Don't let that stop you. It's probably my favorite chain in town. Maybe because it's not a chain exactly; the individual locations are siblings, not clones. Or possibly it's because the food is good. But most probably it's because they make their own beer, and they do it really well.

turkey sandwich with cranberry sauce

I usually go to the Queen Anne location because it's an easy walk from my house. But they run several other establishments in town. Dad Watsons is in Fremont, and the Six-Arms is in Capitol Hill. They have other locations spread throughout Washington and their home state of Oregon. A lot of this post probably applies to most of the pubs (they have hotels and junk too), but I can only vouch for Queen Anne and Doc Watsons.

Rakka loves the turkey sandwich (above) with cranberry sauce. Says it's like thanksgiving in sandwich form. Which I suppose may be true. I really dig the mac and cheese, which is almost as good as Beechers. The high pasta is pretty good too.

chicken enchiladas

The chicken enchiladas are universally considered excellent, but sometimes a bit small. The tuna sandwich is tasty but not earth shattering. Rather like the fries, which I like but aren't the best in town. I won't comment on the burgers since I always order a gardenburger patty, which are the same ones you get in the grocery store; I can't really hold them accountable. They actually give the vegetari a choice of two brands (the other is boca), which is pretty cool.

I don't like nuts in salad usually. I'm told this makes me, um, nuts. The brewer's salad proves my sanity. It has lots of nuts. They're toasty warm, and the blue cheese and the marinated onions... Damn! it's good.

brewers salad

Speaking of good, let's talk about Beer. It's good here. Really good. X and K, who showed me the place, actually took me for the beer. The food was incidental. Personally, I'm a huge IPA fan, and it's great. But all of their beer is great, so maybe that's not a huge chunk of news. The beer is micro brewed. To the best of my knowledge the stuff served at the Queen Anne location is brewed right there.

The atmosphere is dark and cozy. Really dark and cozy. To the point that I had to bring a flashlight to get the food pictures. If you get there near sunset you'll actually notice them turning the lights down as the evening darkens. It's like they don't like contrast. But it's fun in that feeling-your-way-to-the-door sort of way.

dark and cosy

McMenamins (Queen Anne) on Urbanspoon
In conclusion, I like it. As if you couldn't tell. I don't go all the time. Not because it's not good enough, but because it's too good. Whenever they come round and ask "Another IPA?" I've said yes before I even process the question.