Then there was the breakfast at the Aquaterra restaurant right next to the lobby. SFG had the Seattle Scramble: smoked salmon, lightly scrambled eggs, and cream cheese, all mixed together and seasoned with dill. All in all, a salmon lover's dream, though SFG ascertained that the payoff ingredient was the cream cheese (it looked to SFG that the chef used about 2 eggs, 2 tablespoons of cream cheese, and about a 1/2 cup of smoked salmon, for those of you who want to try this at home).
As it happens, this hotel dining was all a warm-up for what turned out to be a culinary extravaganza at the downtown Spanish Tapas restaurant, the Harvest Vine.
But first a bit about the company joining SFG. The leadoff batters were two Female Midwestern Colleagues of Spicy Food Guy (FMCOSFG), bringing their Pennsylvania taste buds to a west coast culinary show. Also joining SFG were two West Coast Colleagues of Spicy Food Guy (WCCOSFG). WCCOSFG are snazzy dressers with sharp shirts and jackets. Spicy Food Guy always feels like a slob when he is with them. Rounding out the company were Elk Hunting Friend of Spicy Food Guy (EHFOSFG), a long-time friend of SFG with a sharp and peculiar sense of humor, and Falsely Modest Colleague of Spicy Food Guy (FMCOSFG), who ordered the wine. SFG details all this because, at the end of the day, this was a company worth keeping. Had the food been horrific, which it was not, SFG would have enjoyed his table. And it's not always like that, out on the road.
The dinner began with FMCOSFG insisting that he wasn't qualified to order the wine, given how little he knew about the nectar of the gods. "I really don't know much," shrugged FMCOSFG, "except what I learned during the two months my wife and I lived in the vineyards of Northern Spain."
Turns out the wine was an excellent surprise. Nessa Albarino. A Spanish white wine with medium body, citrus overtones, and hints of European Basketball. SFG loved it.
The tapas were beyond fabulous. SFG was shocked at how much he enjoyed the "Ensalada de Remolachas", red and yellow beet slices with garlic and vinegar. An off-the-menu tapa was grilled vinison with chard, and the bitterness of the greens was the perfect offset for the wild grilled taste of the deer. The fois gras melted in SFG's mouth. And the Octopus! The "Pulpo da Feira" on crackers made even the conservative FMCOSFGs re-think their culinary disposition regarding eight legged entrees.
So Seattle was splendid, the food was rich and delicious, and the company couldn't be beat. So says Spicy Food Guy.