It’s All Natural!

A few months ago, Nals told me that a coworker of hers has these amazing

lashes because she uses some new serum called EyEnvy. Nals assured me that this sweet coworker of her swears by it. So when I saw it in the store, I bought it. I was a wee bit shocked by the sticker price, but I thought Nals would never lie to me. Plus, I could try it, then review it for you all!

Continue reading

Dog Day Afternoon

Kells & I kicked off 2018 in Seattle.

 

We stayed at Stay Pineapple Maxwell and dined at Purple Café .

 

Click for N&K reviews:

hotel ⇔ restaurant

 


One afternoon we hopped along to Pike Place.  We had luckily timed it right to view the famous fish throwing.  We saw gorgeous fresh flowers, warm bakeries, meaty delis and sweaty^ cheeses.

We got hooked on Chukar Cherries – air dried cherries from Chukar Farms coated with delightful things such as dark chocolate and truffled milk chocolate.

We took some lovely boardwalk pix. And of course all of this walking*, talking, trying, posing and watching makes a couple of gals hungry.

So off we went in search of a spot of lunch. We felt like some Pike Place chowder but there was a HUGE lineup^^.

So we searched high and low. Finally we stumbled across James Moore Bar & Kitchen on 2nd Ave. We ordered Chicken Wings & Quesadilla (con pollo).

Chicken Wings were gorgeously crispy and tasty. Chipotle sauce was smoky and spicy**. Disappointingly, the mango sauce appeared to be pureed and (we surmised) not made in-house.

Quesadilla was cheesy and delightful with big chunks of pollo. Kells has got that gene that makes cilantro taste bunky and horrible (BOLO for our #hatecilantro #notparslay post).  So, we asked for cilantro to be taken out but… get this folks: the guac (in a specialty South American menu) is not made in-house.


P i k e   P l a c e is easy to get to.  Cobblestones and inclined sidewalks may pose problems for those with mobility issues.

J. M.  was hidden behind some scaffolding on a one-way street in DT Seattle.  We walked but parking looked scarce.  Place was large, with beautiful spacious wood seating. Drink menus were creatively written on walls near the bar.

Conclusion:

∴Pike Place is a must-see.  It is very similar to N&K’s local Granville Island.  But it’s the local’s local market and free so why not!

∴JM was standardly good. We think you should try it if the mood strikes and you’re in the area. We would likely try this place again.  However, there is such a variety of restaurants in Seattle that we’d just as likely be trying out something else.

What are your fave spots in Pike Place?

Have you tried this eatery? 

Penny for your thoughts!

Footnotes

^(sweaty in a good way)

*not that much walking

^^ oh gosh just looking at the chowder site, we see that we can order online grrr. But lucky for you that you now know this vital piece of info.

**Nals is a connoisseur of hot sauces and underestimated its power on the old GI system.  This is not in itself a negative thing as one rarely gets surprised at this age.  However it was unpleasant for an offset couple of hours.

Purple Nurple

The Purple Café and Wine Bar is an eatery in the financial district in Seattle. It features seasonal northwest cuisine and wine pairings.

When you first enter the place, it looks surprisingly large with high ceilings. However due to muted lighting and dark wood furniture, it is feels intimate. Just off-centre, they have their wine/liquor larder. It looks like a huge wooden centrifuge from the industrial era*. This large pillar runs to the ceiling, with 360-degree shelving. There are stairs snaking around the side like a DNA helix.  (Kells and I wanted to go explore but there was a pesky ‘stairs not in use’ sign… and we didn’t want to make a scene… At least not that evening.)

We were wineless that night.  Kells had a Cosmo, extra tart. I had a beer**.

We ordered the Baked Brie to start. It was gift wrapped in

crispy phyllo, and accompanied by apricots, carmelized onions, walnuts, grapes and house crackers. The whole mess was delightful. Everything complemented each other perfectly. And the grapes were an amazement — halved and warmed, with salt. You may think ‘egads how odd!’ But trust us… your tastebuds will thank you.

For our mains, we couldn’t decide from Maine Lobster Mac and Cheese, seared Diver Scallops with grits (daily special) or Wild Mushroom Rigatoni. We were also eyeing the Veal and Pancetta Bolognese (I love me some parpadelle) and Pan Seared Muscovy Duck Breast. Due to availability and what was popular we went with Scallops and Bolognese.

The Diver Scallops were beautifully seared, toothy but tender and slightly sweet on the inside. Though cooked perfectly, grits were a little flat in flavour. (Grits are hard to season). The Bolognese was rich with al dente flavourful parps.

Kells was here before and enjoyed the Lobster Mac and Cheese. This is also a popular dish…Kells gives it 2 thumbs up. (But someone^ forgot her lactaid and we didn’t want to take a chance with someone’s^ gnarly digestive results if someone^ partook of the lactose-laden kryptonite.)

And we ended with Vanilla Bean Crème Brûlée. Holy caboodles!Beautifully torched top…sweet and smoky. The crème was mindblowing… flavourful, great mouthfeel, not super sickly sweet. An amazing way to end a good meal.

Staff: Our waitstaff Maddy was fabulous! She was super friendly, genuine and knew when to come by to ask questions (ie: not when we just took a big bite).

Conclusion: Purple Café is a must-try!

Have you gone to Purple Cafe?
What delights have you ordered?  

Tell us what you think below, in the Comments section!

End bitties

* did scientists have centrifuges in the industrial era? If they did, this is what my mind pictures.
**Wine is not sitting well with Kells’ system these days. This is a sad state of affairs for her. So, in blog-sisterhood, I didn’t get wine even though we were at a winebar.
^someone=Nals

Get To Know Ya

No N&Kers, this is not a Maxwell song but a review of The Maxwell Downtown Seattle Hotel.

Stay Pineapple is a boutique hotel chain in 5 American cities.  We chose to stay at The Maxwell Downtown. Oh la la.

It is a funky cool hotel, just off of 3rd Avenue North^. The hotel is nestled in a quieter residential-type subdivision. It’s an 8-minute walk from the Museum of Pop Culture, and about 9 minute drive to Pike Place Market.

Their mottos:

  • Stay Naked (laundered bed linens so you can just pop into bed, and not have to pull a blue-light-worthy germy bedspread off),
  • old-fashioned hospitality and
  • pup-friendly (welcome with reservations).

We’d sum up the looks with: bright colours, lots of light and groovy-kinda-retro vibes.

Our room was in the corner, south-facing and on the 4th floor. We had a view of the top of the Space Needle. We had a balcony with some chairs. It was raining, cold and foggy so we didn’t spend too much time out there.

T H E    p R O s:

What first stood out were the non-carpeted floors, the lofty ceiling and big fluffy beds. Though the lobby and hallways were loudly coloured, our stylish room was thankfully muted.

This hotel is chock full of amenities like shuttle buses, in-room safe, microwave, mini fridge, basic beverages and popcorn, on-site gym, pool, espresso & cocktail bars and restaurant. There’s apparently an afternoon teatime in the lobby with pineapple cupcakes. There’s also a secured underground parking (fee).

Gender neutral washrooms!

There are tons of nooks and crannies for cool pictures*.

There are some little eateries within walking distance.

Gym fits 7 people. They have 4 cardio machines, free weights, TV, a bench, towels and water.

TV was a good size and positioned so we could both comfortably watch. We could cast Netflix from our phones to the TV, and loaded music when we wanted. (Wifi is free for guests.)

Saving the best for last… The beds were heaven. Absolute heaven! They were tall, firm, lofty, cozy and pillow filled**.

C H A L L E N G E S:

1. Shuttle schedule and stops are not written anywhere. One can phone the front desk to inquire. The staff are happy to provide a verbal schedule, or make a booking.  So, call the day before if you want to plan around the shuttle sched.

2. Restaurant and cocktail bar weren’t open when we were there (on a weekend).

3. There wasn’t a lot of countertop space in the bathroom or living areas. This was a bit of a problem as we have lots of makeup and girly things. We also require a separate snack stacking area. So things were very tight.

4. In-suite lighting wasn’t wonderful for getting ready. (Usually we share the bathroom, see point 3.) So I had to do my makeup at the windowsill which didn’t work well in the evening.  (Putting on lashes is hard enough in normal lighting!)

5. Pool is small. We didn’t think it would be huge but an average-heighted adult couldn’t do laps. This pool is probably more suited to keep kids busy when the supervising adults want some quieter time.

6. Resort and parking fees.  Nightly rates are reasonable but these fees add another $50/night.

They have fun wood-block games in their elevators.

C O N C L U S I O N:

Yes, we’d recommend this hotel.

Next time we’re in Seattle, though, we’ll probably be checking out other hotels for variety.

FOOTNOTES:

^ Oddly there is a huge mostly empty parking lot across the street in front with an airstream parked on top, like a cherry.
* hint hint… foreshadowing to our upcoming pictures!
** One evening, after traipsing around in the damp cold, I had changed into my jams and was bundled in my bed watching TV. Kells comes out of the washroom and for a moment couldn’t see me. THAT’S how fluffy the duvets and pillows were!