Salumi Backroom Lunch

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Salumi is one of those Seattle restaurants on everyone’s “must visit” list, and with nearly 700 reviews and four and a half stars on Yelp, it is clearly a local hot spot. They’re only open Tuesday-Friday 11am to 3:30/4pm, and they often run out of “the good stuff” just after noon. Luckily, I work with some amazing folks who also love food. One of my coworkers arranged for us to take part in the “backroom lunch.” We made our reservation months in advance, and not one of the ten of us backed out.

The backroom private lunch is only offered on Wednesday and Thursday, and is a 5-course “chef’s whim” menu. We arrived just before noon, and were greeted with bread, olives, and a massive plate of cured meat.

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Tempting as it was, we waited for our whole group to arrive before digging right in. There was also delicious house wine available.

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We poured the wine, chatted with Chef Brian to confirm my gluten allergy restrictions, and promptly devoured the plate of cured meat.

The next appetizer course was bruschetta and onions. The bruschetta was apparently amazing (unfortunately I was unable to try it).

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The onions were slightly fermented (tasted almost like a version of sauerkraut), warm, and incredibly delicious.

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The next course featured short ribs and pancetta wrapped chard.

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The short ribs were bone-in and perfectly cooked, and the chard definitely invoked lots of comments along the lines of “so, I do like chard after all!”

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The next course was another cured meat course, beef tongue.

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It was actually my first time trying tongue, and it was superb. Chef Brian was also happy that everyone at the table tried it (and enjoyed it!).

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Next was a fava bean fontina frittata.

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Finally, we reached the main courses. First, was the pasta course. IMG_4513

It was a carbonara with pork jowl and asparagus.

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Even though I couldn’t take part, everyone else loved it. The plate was cleaned!

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Next, we had sautéed peppers with two types of sausage, fennel sausage and green peppercorn and garlic sausage.

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It was a simple dish, but quite delicious. My favorite was definitely the green peppercorn and garlic sausage.

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We finished off every last pepper!

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To finish off, dessert! He paired grapes with Beecher’s cheese and candied chili mango.

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The cheese was delicious (of course!), but the true delight was really the candied mango. It was the perfect blend of sweet and spice.

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Two and a half hours later, we were intoxicated on delicious food. We did make sure to snag a photo with Chef Brian outside the restaurant!

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Birthday Dinner and a Spinasse Review

For Nick’s birthday, we went out to dinner with our good friends (Rose’s birthday was on Saturday). Spinasse came highly recommend from Nick’s close family friend who lived for many years in Italy, so we knew we had to try it.

I wore my James Perse wrap dress, black tights, and boots.

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Dress: James Perse from Nordstrom, Tights: Hue, Boots: Naturalizer

The food was delicious. In particular, the special pasta and the stuffed cabbage were excellent! And of course, the prosciutto.

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First, they brought out a mini appetizer of toasted bread topped with anchovies.

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Since I couldn’t eat the bread, the chef sent out a mini beet salad for me.

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For appetizers, we shared the prosciutto and marinated apples, and olives.

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For a first course, I had a parsnip flan.

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Nick had the insalata di cicoria di campo, or local chicory salad with marinated rabbit, parmigiano-reggiano, and balsamico.

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For the main course, I had cabbage stuffed with veal breast and pig’s trotter, with a side of Brussels sprouts and pine nuts.

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Nick had the special, which was fresh pasta with pork ragu.

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For dessert, we both had panna cotta toped with grappa soaked sour cherries.

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The birthday kids with their desserts!

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The two delicious bottles of wine.

Valentine’s Date Night at the Book Bindery

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Last night we both got dressed up for our Valentine’s Date Night at a new restaurant we’ve been wanting to try, Book Bindery.

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I wore my Herve Leger v-neck bandage dress (here in black), black tights, black patent booties, and a silver multi-chain necklace. I threw on a tuxedo blazer since it was quite chilly last night.

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The food was excellent. We both started with cocktails, mine was St. Germaine, grapefruit, and sparkling wine, and Nick’s was called the Islay Roy, and was scotch based.

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The chef was super sweet, and made me a mini starter since I couldn’t partake in the amazing bread.

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For a starter, I had the arborio risotto with castelmagno cheese and winter truffles, and Nick had the slow poached hen egg with hand cut tagliatelle, parmesan broth, and herbs.

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To pair with the main course, we tried out one of the Almquist wines, the 2009 Cab Franc. It was quite delicious, and had a spicy/fruity taste and aroma.

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For the main course, Nick had the herb roasted sturgeon, with potato gnocchi, bacon marmalade, and lobster sauce. I had the lamb rack, with crispy panisse, braised chard, merguez sausage, and Niçoise olive lamb sauce.

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For dessert, I had the cinnamon semifreddo with local apples, bourbon caramel, and a cider reduction. Nick had the s’mores, with warm chocolate cake, house made graham cracker, and smoked marshmallow.

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Black and white on a Friday night

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Friday night was a double date night, and we went out with our good friends to try Spur, a gastro pub in the Belltown neighborhood of Seattle.

I paired my waxed Paige skinny jeans and Steve Madden platform wedges with my cuffed sheer white top (all from Nordstrom) and a BCBG black tuxedo blazer.

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I purchased the blazer a few years ago, but some similar options are Bop Basics (Shopbop), Necessary Objects boyfriend blazer, and Truth & Pride shawl collar blazer (both Nordstrom).

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It looked cute with just the top, too.

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We started off with drinks. I had the empress (a Spur creation), which featured Jamaican rum, grapefruit, and St Germaine. It was so good that I had Nick recreate it for me on Saturday. Nick had his usual negroni (campari, vermouth, and gin).

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Then, Nick got the pork belly sliders, and I got the Wagyu sirloin. He really enjoyed his sliders, and his only complaint was that he wished he had ordered fries to go with them. My sirloin was paired with sous-vide rutabaga and pears. The steak was perfectly cooked, and the rutabaga was delicious!

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The desserts were amazing, as well. Igor got the chocolate, pistachio, and pear dessert, while Nick and I both got the passion fruit, grapefruit, and fromage blanc custard.

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