Monday, October 24, 2011
My birthday is this Thursday, the 27th, but I did a little early celebrating this past Saturday. My friend Robin's birthday is on the 25th, so we did a joint shindig with a few close friends and family. The Scientist and I have spent many wonderful nights with Robin and her boyfriend, trying out new restaurants, wine tasting, etc. and we wanted to do something like that for our birthday as well.
Several months ago, I'd heard that the McCracken Tough team were opening a new restaurant in Belltown, The Coterie Room. I love their other spots, Spur Gastropub and Tavern Law, so I knew their newest venture would be a success. Robin and I both agreed it would be a perfect spot for a celebratory dinner.
The Coterie Room is in the old Restaurant Zoe space (another Seattle favorite!). It's been redone inside and is stunning. It's clean and understated, save for the gorgeous chandelier in the middle of the restaurant. The space isn't huge, so it feels cozy and welcoming but without feeling too cramped or feeling like you're intruding on your neighbor's space.
Let's talk about the important part now. The menu. It's broken out into 3 sections: Small plates, entrees, and family style. Every single item on the menu sounds divine (except the crab, of course - I'm deathly allergic). We started by each ordering a small plate and shared them with each other.
Marinated beets with arugula, roasted pistachios, and cottage cheese - I've never met a beet I didn't like, and this dish is no exception. The flavors and textures blended perfectly.
Grilled fennel sausage with creamy polenta - Holy moly, this was so incredible we contemplated getting another plate of it instead of dessert.
Cucumber and baby lettuces with vinaigrette and pine nuts - The dressing was delightful and the greens were so fresh and crispy.
Heirloom baby carrots with coriander butter and olive vinaigrette - The carrots were perfectly cooked. The olive vinaigrette was more like a tapenade. It added a really unique complexity to the dish.
There were several other dishes on the small plates menu that I would love to try - including the sweet onion mac & cheese, and of course the poutine!
For our entrees, we each got something different and shared a few bites. I got the zucchini pasta gratin, The Scientist got the duck confit, Robin got the crab, and Shawn got the cavatelli. Everything was cooked to perfection and there were oooohs and ahhhhs coming out of our mouths constantly.
For dessert, we had their homemade ice creams and sorbet. Robin and Shawn got the coffee ice cream, The Scientist and I got pumpkin ice cream and cranberry sorbet. We shared a French Press (they serve Fonte) and I had a lovely glass of prosecco.
The service was excellent. Our waitress was knowledgeable, helpful, and attentive without being overbearing. She gave us time to enjoy our meal, but was also available to answer any questions and bring us anything we needed. We never felt rushed (we were there for about two hours) and were able to leisurely enjoy our meal and the company.
Sadly, I didn't take any pictures of the food (I know, I know!). I was too busy enjoying it IN MY MOUTH (TWSS). But I plan on going back again soon!
They do a lunch during the week as well as brunch on Saturday and Sunday. I'll definitely be checking that out.
If you're in Seattle, I highly recommend The Coterie Room.
Have you tried any new restaurants lately? What's your favorite restaurant in your city?
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