A quick two day trip down to Seattle involved some outlet shopping (obviously), eating and drinking. Let’s goooo.
Before heading to the outlets, we decided to make a quick pit stop in Bellingham for an early lunch. We’d decided the night before to try Mi Mexico. It’s Tex mex style Mexican.
We dropped in on a Friday (around 11:15am). It wasn’t too busy when we first arrived but that changed when it was close to lunch time. The inside is huge and decorated very brightly. Service is very hospitable and our food came out incredibly quick (it took us longer deciding what to get).
Like everything else here, the menu is massive; small and large combinations, chicken, fresh healthy choices, sizzling fajitas, meats, seafood, salad, eggs, burritos, enchiladas, tostadas, appetizers, soups, kids menu, lunch specials and supreme lunch specials. Lunch specials were the best deal and are available daily (11:00am to 3:00pm).
Salsa had a mild kick to it.
It came with rice, beans and coleslaw. The mole sauce was one dimensional (sweet); we didn’t get much else. Not much depth for a mole sauce.
This also came with your choice of flour or corn tortillas; we went with the latter.
1 Enchilada, 1 chile relleno and 1 tamale (#23) ($11.99 US)
This was under their large combination options and came with the same side accompaniments. I liked the rice but was not a fan of the refried beans.
Tamale was enjoyable; the masa was tasty but the shredded pork inside was slightly dry.
The chile relleno was unexpectedly stuffed to the brim with cheese. Tasty.
Last but not least, the enchilada with ground beef was decent. Wish they offered a sauce to go with it (red or green tomatillo).
Portion sizes are huge, cheap and filling at Mi Mexico. Probably not coming back anytime soon but I can see the appeal.
241 Telegraph Rd
U:Don was on my list of places to try last time we were in Seattle but we didn’t make it. This time we did after a couple hours of shopping at the outlets. They have another location in town (Capitol Hill) but this one is surrounded by a ton of other restaurants on University Way.
We dropped in on a Friday evening (around 6:30pm) and the place was popping. Mostly students but don’t worry, there’s tons of booths and even an udon bar for the solo diners.
How to order sign. Simple and easy.
There’s about 16 udon options (cold and hot) along with a few tempura and dessert. You can choose from three sizes (small, medium or large).
Closeup of menu options while you wait in line.
Tempura options and their signature dishes.
It’s cafeteria style where you go grab a tray, tell them your order, grab any tempura/extras you want and then pay at the end. There’s water and hot water at the drink station. Busk your own tables when you’re done eating.
Awesome that you can see the udon noodles being made fresh while you wait in line.
Green onions, grated fresh ginger and tempura flakes are free to add into your bowl.
We grabbed a small bowl and filled it up.
A couple closeups of all their tempura offerings.
They also have onigiri, spam masubi and takoyaki.
They give you a massive amount of noodles which had a springy bite and retained a good texture the whole time.
Broth is flavourful. Solid.
Loved the wakame for some vegetables and change in texture. Again, noodles were abundant and had a satisfying chewy bite to them.
Reasonably priced, comfort food at U:Don. I’d happily come back again to get my udon fix. A place like this needs to exist back home!
4515 University Way NE
We were excited to try a few cideries while we were in town. Locust Cider was the first one we visited. There was a pasta food truck parked out front when we arrived but had already went for dinner beforehand.
Sign outside pointing you in the (wrong) direction.
We dropped in on a Friday evening (around 8:30pm). The inside is spacious and the room is split into two areas.
They’ve got a bunch of board games (Jenga, chess, Scrabble, mancala, etc.) to entertain you along with crayons (for the kiddies), shuffle board and three video game systems (Atari, NES and SNES).
Fun that they have trivia nights on Wednesday’s.
There was a dozen cider flavours along with one-non alcoholic option. The flavours are roughly grouped from dry (left) to sweetest (right).
Closeup of their cider taps.
Prices for pints, flights, grunts and growlers.
Write out your own flight on their boards. The girl working the bar let us try a few samples before we picked. They also sell a few flavours by the can ($8.00 US/4 pack of core flavours, $9.00 US/4 pack premium).
There’s not much for food options but there was 6 savory pies ($8.50 US) and a brownie dessert ($6.00 US).
There was also kettle popcorn ($2.00 US).
We tried the dark cherry, sweet aged apple, crab apple, randall (sour patch kids), cinnamon and vanilla bean (kind of like cream soda).
We liked the dark cherry and randall the most (tasted and smelled just like sour patch candies).
Did not like the cinnamon as the flavour was not well blended.
Card payment only. LC had some decent cider options but we felt it was pricey going the flight route. Stick with the pints.
5309 22nd Ave NW
Fainting Goat Gelato
Our last stop of the night was at Fainting Goat Gelato. Always love trying out new gelato spots. It’s a few doors from Yoroshiku.
Sign outside. So fainting good slogan is clevah.
Hours and logo on the window.
We dropped in on a late Friday evening (around 10:30pm). The one worker was starting to clean up the shop but was super friendly and let us know it was still open for business. The inside is small but there’s about half a dozen tables.
They had 14 gelato and sorbet flavours available. We sampled a couple before we made our decision. Scoops are on the pricey side ($4.95 US single, $6.50 US double and $8.50 US triple). Not cheap for us Canadians.
Closeup of their gelato options.
Ice cream cone offerings and toppings ($0.50 US each).
They also had espresso, pints ($10.00 US), affogato and gelato cakes on the menu.
There’s gelato sandwiches ($6.50 US) and macaroons ($1.75) but I didn’t see any in the fridge.
Two scoops ($6.50 US)
We went with pear ginger sorbet and Mexican vanilla. Sorbet was refreshing and I got more ginger than pear flavour. Good but the flavour was a bit too subtle. Mexican vanilla was much more satisfying; reminded me a bit of horchata. Think they mix cinnamon into this. I’d get it again.
FGG was worth a try but we weren’t blown away by their gelato and sorbet flavours.
Fainting Goat Gelato
1903 N 45th St
We decided to stop in for a quick morning coffee at Dubsea Coffee before starting our day. It has a very neighbourhood, community oriented vibe to it and is located directly across the street from Greenbridge Cafe.
Typical cafe hours.
We dropped in on a Saturday morning (around 11:00am). The place was reasonably busy; seems like a lot of older locals frequent here.
They have a few board games (chess, scrabble, pictionary) along with Counter Culture coffee beans and some really expensive merchandise for sale.
The drink menu is split into espresso, coffee, other drinks and tea. They even do catered coffee (from 8 to 50 cups).
Food is simple; pastries (muffins, scones, cookies), croissants, bagels, sandwiches and wraps.
The banh mi vegan wrap sounded interesting. Most expensive banh mi I’ve seen…
I had a couple sips but found it pretty unmemorable.
Looked like it was put on a panini press. Hit the spot for me as a light breakfast snack.
The coffee won’t blow you away but it seems people come more for the space and environment.
9910 8th Ave SW
Taqueria La Fondita
It’s been ages since I’ve had authentic Mexican food. Since we were in the States, it was the perfect time to get my fix. Taqueria La Fondita had great ratings and seemed to check off all the right buttons; food truck, family run and cheap.
It’s located beside another food truck, Best Roasted Corn on the Cob.
Will have to come back next time to try their elote and mangoneada.
We dropped in on a Saturday (around 11:45am). There was already people getting food (most getting it to go) but the line was quick and food comes out speedily. Impressed that they take credit cards!
The menu has 10 combinations along with another 11 entrees, kids options and beverages.
Closeup of the menu options.
They also had a couple really cheap specials (5 tacos + soda for $7.00 US, 2 chicken enchiladas with rice & beans for $4.99 US and a special burrito for $1.99 US). Incredible value.
They gave us a red and green sauce bottle to go with our meal.
Both weren’t spicy and the green sauce had a thin, almost watery texture.
We upgraded to a horchata ($0.29 US extra) and opted for the asada (steak), carnitas (fried pork), cabeza (head), lengua (tongue) and fish ($0.20 extra).
Fish was tender and would have been fantastic except they oversalted it.
Same thing for the lengua.
The cabeza was better but fatty. Asada and carnitas were better but we found the meat a tad dry and needed sauce.
This was bigger that expected and it’s filled with rice, bean, cilantro, onion and meat.
Filling but wish there was a bit more meat inside.
I wanted to love TLF but they were too heavy handed with the salt.
Taqueria La Fondita
9811 15th Ave SW
Full Tilt Ice Cream
After an early lunch, we were ready to try another popular ice cream spot. Full Tilt Ice Cream’s are everywhere around town (they have four other locations) so we decided to check out what all the fuss was about.
We dropped in on a Saturday around noon and were the only customers in there for awhile.
This place is cool as there’s arcade games, pinball and skee ball in the back. Bring some change (although they have a machine to break up bills).
There’s also some unique local artwork up on the walls that can be purchased.
These candles were hilarious and utterly unique. Each one was a different celebrity ranging from Anthony Bourdain and Guy Fieri to Snoop Dogg and Deadpool.
16 flavours of ice cream to choose from. The worker/manager was super friendly and let us sample a couple flavours before deciding. Awesome that she lets you try two flavours at once.
Prices are reasonable ($4.25 US single, $6.00 US double, $8.00 US triple). Same for their pints ($7.00 US).
Happy hour seems to be a thing everywhere and Full Tilt is no different; free waffle cones (from noon to 3:00pm on weekdays only).
They even have beer and cider on tap. Sweet.
Some of the pints in the fridge were ridiculous. Green eggs & ham!?!?
Of course, they had more normal flavours.
Hands down winner was the spiced apple cider sorbet and red bean. Tons of flavour and good texture. The peach green tea was good but flavours were more on the subtle side. Our least favourite was the walnut date as texture was slightly gritty and icy.
Decent ice cream but we were expecting more consistency at Full Tilt.
Full Tilt Ice Cream
9629 – 16th Ave SW
The Beer Junction
We always like bringing a few beers and ciders back from our trips so we decided to check out The Beer Junction. They have a huge collection of beers, ciders and sake.
Sign outside. Cool that they have a different brewery event every Thursday.
This was in the back entrance. Same schedule.
The bar is right when you first walk in; you can sample from a list of 65 options.
Kegs are available along with glasses and growler packs.
Keg menu with prices.
Smart that they have a shelf of all their new arrivals.
There’s 39 fridges to browse (triple IPA fest, hops, light & medium bodied, chocolate beer week, dark/strong side, rare/sour/odd & delicious, cider & mead and non-alcoholic) so make sure you have some time to look around.
Always love Cascade Brewing but dang, their bottles are pricey.
These sours from Urban Family sounded and looked appealing.
Nashi Orchards is what I really wanted to try.
Had the Wandering Aengus bloom before.
Hilarious that they have Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse from Saanichton, BC. Reppin’ good ‘ol Canada.
Elemental Hard Cider was another cidery in town that we wanted to check out.
See Finnriver Farm & Cidery all the time but we haven’t tried any bottles yet.
A couple ginger beers from Timber City Ginger looked intriguing.
Most unexpected was seeing that they offered sake!
Taiwan beer lychee caught my eye. Of course, they have all the Hitachino Nest beers.
There was a ton of people stocking up by the cartload.
We went with Timber City Ginger’s imperial ginger brew (#33), Elemental Hard Cider’s “calcium” blood orange (#3), Mystic Kombucha’s lemon goji berry (#41), Snowdrift Cider’s cornice (#38) and Seattle Cider’s gin botanical (#45).
The only one I really liked was the kombucha. The calcium blood orange wasn’t bad but was lacking in blood orange depth. The other three we didn’t particularly enjoy.
Our small haul that we brought back home.
Didn’t love the samples we tried but an interesting variety of drinks to choose from.
The Beer Junction
4511 California Ave SW
Brownrigg Hard Cider
This was our last stop before heading back across the border. Brownrigg Hard Cider seemed right up my alley; run by one man (Chris), random industrial location and unique ciders. Heck yes. The space is shared with 3 Howls Distillery.
We dropped in on a Saturday afternoon (around 2:30pm). The tasting room was half full but it’s not too big to begin with. Your greeted immediately by the cutest pug, Millie Bobby Brownrigg.
There’s one large communal table (with 8 stools) and two smaller tables (3 to 4 stools).
People absolutely love this place; everyone brought a growler to fill. One group filled 5 growlers, another lady filled 4 for herself.
Closeup of cider taps.
Pro tip: when you find a flavour you like, jump on it or it might be gone. We waited till the end and ran out of our favourite.
Tasting is free, I repeat FREE which is unheard of these days AND you get to try all 12 flavours on tap.
Chris takes you through his ciders from sweetest to driest (interestingly opposite to what other cideries do). He really knows his stuff and explains what’s inside of each flavour. It’s clearly a labour of love as the tasting room is only open on weekends.
Growler and cider price list.
Concord spice ($6.00 US 32oz fill)
We went with our second favourite as the cherry cardamom was completely tapped out. Well priced.
A must stop at Brownrigg for all the cider lovers. Flavours are fantastic and creative.
Brownrigg Hard Cider
426 S Massachusetts St
Short and sweet trip across the border. Will be back to hit up all the place we missed.