Sunday, March 1, 2009

Soggy Sunday at Pike Place Market

Today was my 3rd trip to Pike Place Market and each time I go there is completely different from the time before it. There is always a colorful mix of people, different street performers, and different smells to entice you on any given day. Today, it was the smell of Piroshki Piroshki that was practically irresistible. I've always salivated at the sight of all the delicious looking Russian pastries, and the smell of apple cinnamon was overwhelming today. There was a huge line of people waiting to sample their offerings, but I made a mental note to go back later.

Because today, I wanted Turkish Delight. This little hole in the wall place has doner kebap - the most popular fast food in Germany. My craving had to be satisfied, and fortunately, my friend Lisa was anxious to try it too, having lived in Germany herself. It's a bit on the pricey side, and not exactly like the doner kebap I knew and loved in Germany, but it was enough to make me happy. The lady running it was super nice. She mentioned that she was from Istanbul and when I told her I had been there before, she got very excited and wanted to hear about my experience there. After we finished our massive chicken doners, I bought a couple of pieces of homemade Turkish delight (orange and raspberry flavored) to take away.

We decided to do a wine tasting at The Tasting Room. It was deserted when we came in, but a great place to kick back with a glass of wine and have a conversation. The woman working behind the counter, Sarah, was super cool and she had her sweet little dog with her.

Which reminds me, Pike Place Market is an awesome place to take your dog. I'll remember that for next time.

Anyway, this wine shop is next to Kell's Irish Pub, which is a popular place and also rumored to be haunted. Apparently, the wine shop is possibly haunted as well. They have great events there too - Tuesday nights are movie nights. If I lived anywhere near downtown, I would do that.

We continued to wander around after our wine tasting. We came back around Piroshki Piroshki again, but by that time, I had run out of cash. We ended up stopping at this French cafe for coffee...and it was like walking into one of the small cafes that I've been to in Belgium. Very nice. And they had raclette on the menu, so we want to go back there and try that next. Also, great live music on Sundays.

Places we visited in/around the market:

- Chukar Cherries: got free samples of their dark and milk chocolate covered dried cherries. Delicious! Keeping this in mind for gifts in the future.

- The Crumpet Shop: when you need crumpets and tea. I want to try this place very cute!

- Bavarian Meats: German meats, cheeses and other goods.

- Beecher's Handmade Cheese: apparently has the best (and possibly most expensive) macaroni and cheese on the planet. Have not tasted it yet. But enough word of mouth for me to believe it. Also, my husband is anxious to try it, so I'll be saving this experience for when he's tagging along.

- DeLaurenti: Specialty food and wine. Lots of imported European stuff here, although I'll be honest with you - you can get a lot of the same stuff for probably cheaper at the nearby Cost Plus World Market. Still, a nice place to browse.

Just for the heck of it, we stopped at a nearby LUSH at Westlake Center, and went into a Made In Washington store, where Chukar Cherries products are less expensive than they are at the market (just sayin').

It was raining pretty heavily by the time we were wrapping things up, but since I left my poor pooch back at home, I had to stop into Three Dog Bakery to get her a special treat: a peanut butter bone with carob coating. What a spoiled dog I have.

I love the atmosphere at Pike Place Market. I always notice something new every time I go, and it really gives off this European vibe that is very comforting to me.

On another note - since my traveling has been significantly curtailed since I left Europe, I sometimes wonder what direction I should take this blog. Obviously, I'm interested in exploring more of the local area and the entire Pacific Northwest, and I will blog about other places further afield as I travel. But I think I also want to focus on places that are dog-friendly too, since my travel priorities have changed a bit. I'll be interested in seeing how this blog grows and evolves over time.