Local Inspirations (Part VI)

Local Inspirations (Part VI)
I do like to cook but I LOVE to go out.  Often my to-do list is filled with places that I haven’t been to but my inspirations are mostly drawn from are those who have been at it for a little or a long while, as below. 

Maneki: Is my favorite traditional Japanese restaurant located in the heart of the International District that has been in Seattle for more than 100 years.  As quoted by Nancy Leson from the Seattle Times reflecting on their extensive customer base: ” That's what happens when a restaurant withstands two World Wars, Japanese internment, a move, the distinction of having a former dishwasher go on to become the 66th prime minister of Japan and — amazingly enough — only a handful of ownership changes in a century.”  Impressive hardly describes it.

Beloved dish: anything from their daily specials and Ankimo (Monkfish liver) if I’m lucky
Special detail: Private Tatami rooms for 4-10 people
Favorite server:  I’m not sure if she is still bartending part time but it is the best treat if Fusae Yokoyama, aka "Okasan" or "Mom" is behind the bar
Delicious drink: sake!


Spinasse: Since opening in 2008, this little Italian joint has caught the attention of those seeking salvation in Piedmontese cuisine.  Chef Jason Stratton and his team create daily fresh staples that are beautiful simple yet refined and word has it from those in the know… authentic.

Beloved dish: I would eat every single one of his pasta dishes every single day of my life for the rest of my life if my heart and hips could take it.
Special detail: sit at the counter, the pasta equivalent of the sushi counter
Delicious drink: I’m a sucker for their Dolcetto collection