Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Great Cookie Quest

Urban Bakery > Greenlake > 98103
PCC > Greenlake > 98013
Blu Water Bistro > Greenlake > 98103
Souped Up Cafe > Greenlake > 98103

a search for the best cookie in the Green Lake neighborhood.

Living and working in Greenlake, it was a very common sight to see me moseying down the drive to the Urban Bakery in search of a sugar fix. Walking into the neighborhood cafe, I was always greeted with a friendly face and an eyeful of delicious looking baked goods. Not once did I ever try the bread puddings or the glossy fruit tarts...it was a big cookie I was after. Sugar? Peanut Butter? Chocolate Chip? M&M? Oatmeal & Raisin? Too many choices! Every week I would stand there and stare at the display case -trying to convince myself to choose just one. Every week I would "happen" to forget cash and have to put a $5 minimum on my debit card. "I'll take one of each! I'll share with the office!" Yes, I would share with the office, after I cut off half of each to enjoy myself. (The cookies are very big.) Biting into to the "crisp on the outside/chewy and soft on the inside" deliciousness that was the Urban Bakery cookie was like biting into a little bit of heaven.

After a couple of years, Urban Bakery was bought out by another family. Gone was my favorite cashier, and flat and crunchy went my cookies. After a few tries, I finally realized that the bakery wasn't just having a bad day...the cookies I came to love were gone.

With all the restaurants and cafes in walking distance, I wasn't worried about finding a substitute. It would all be okay. In fact, I remembered something with the name "Tollhouse Magic" at the Blu Water. I tried it, and believe me, it was magic. Baked in a cast iron skillet was a bubbling and gooey tollhouse cookie topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. All for the unbelievable price of....$7.50! Are you kidding me?!?!? After paying for the stupid cookie, as well as tax, tip, and the $3 cup of drip, I quickly decided this would be my last Tollhouse Magic. ...And the Great Cookie Quest continued.

Although the cream cheese brownies at Chocolati were spectacular, and The Mix ice cream was always wonderful, the void left by the Urban Bakery's cookies could not be filled. One day, I decided to stop by PCC to see what cookies they had available. In between the scones and cheeses, I saw it...a big cookie covered with giant chunks of chocolate. I snatched it up and went straight to the checkout. Not two steps out the door, I pulled the cookie out of the saran wrap, took a deep breath, and sunk my teeth in. THE HORROR! It was like biting into a piece of CHALK! I looked at the label on the back of the saran wrap...it was Gluten Free! Dejected, with a bad taste in my mouth, I walked home.

A couple cookieless months later, a new cafe and sandwich shop came to town -the Souped Up Cafe. While my eyes wandered through the display case, they landed on a big, burnt-looking cookie. "Hell," I thought, "I'll give it a try". This cookie was indescribable. Not only was it good, it blew the Urban Bakery cookie out of the water!! The search was officially over. Now Souped Up has Macadamia Nut, Sugar, and Oatmeal & Raisin cookies, all equally as good and all $1.50. Thank you Souped Up, thank you.

Signing out.


Restaurant Inspections for Urban Bakery
Restaurant Inspections for Souped Up

Urban Bakery in Seattle

Monday, January 28, 2008

Almond Fried Chicken Connoisseur

Happy Garden Chinese Restaurant > Burien > 14301 Ambaum Blvd. S.W. > 98166 > 206.242.3400

Americanized Chinese food is so hit and miss. Happy Garden Chinese is always right on target. What started this love affair was their almond fried chicken.

I have now eaten there twice and ordered delivery once. Each time, I ordered the almond fried chicken. What normally is a greasy dish that later leaves me regretting my menu choice, this version is an actual chicken breast that is fried in a light and crispy panko breading on a bed of crisp cabbage -not the normal slimy lettuce. The sauce is not the neon yellow goo that I'm scared to eat (but usually still do), it is a perfectly seasoned brown kind of gravy. Accompanying this wonderful lunch is two scoops of slightly old rice (no big deal), a tasty and perfectly greasy eggroll, and the best hot and sour soup I have ever eaten. ALL FOR $5.45, which includes tax!! Best $5 meal I've ever had!

Here are the top 5 reasons that Happy Garden Chinese is my favorite Chinese place:
5. The Christmas decorations are still up.
4. They deliver for free.
3. Hot and sour soup.
2. This place is spotless. As a certified Germaphobe, not very many places get my stamp of approval. Please remember this when you read the last paragraph.

Signing out until hunger strikes next.


Restaurant Inspection for Happy Garden

Sunday, January 27, 2008

For the Love of Mochas

El Diablo Coffee Company > Upper Queen Anne > 1811 Queen Anne Ave N Ste 101 > 98109


Walking in to El Diablo on a cold rainy day is like stepping into a vibrant Latin paradise. The bright decor and wonderful smells all but assault you as you step through the door. Here are the top 5 of the many reasons I love this place.

5. The hand painted murals and Cuban music makes me happy.
4. There is Wi-Fi.
3. The restaurant is attached to a bookstore.
2. There is tongue-in-cheek devil paraphernalia throughout.
1. The mocha with Mexican chocolate and some beautiful and tasty unidentifiable (maybe cinnamon and nutmeg?) spices atop the foam.

I never thought I could find a mocha that beats Chocolati, but I have. Don't you DARE get it to go, unless you are unable to find a seat. Although Diablo's service isn't anything to write about, the atmosphere is spectacular, and it seems that all of Queen Anne agrees. The place is always full.

Restaurant Inspection Results

El Diablo Coffee Company in Seattle

I want to blog too!!

I can't type. I can't spell. And I definitely can't write. But I sure can eat!

Everyone is starting a blog and I want to start one too! I could write about the obvious...my spectacular social encounters, my insightful political views, or what my world tends to revolve around, real estate. However, I have another love in my life, (besides my wonderful partner, of course)FOOD.

As if you couldn't tell by the name, this blog will be devoted to food (and maybe some ignorant twittering about wine) within the Seattle area. I am definitely not a food snob, as I could write for hours about the difference between Annie's Mac 'n Cheese compared to Kraft. Just give me some good food, good service, nice atmosphere, and a slightly dirty martini, and I will be the happiest girl on earth. Unfortunately, the mixture of all those characteristics is often hard to find. That is where this blog comes in.

The Best Home Search EVER!!

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