Sunday, May 24, 2009

Mt Rainier- Seattle day 2

See the mountain in the distance, that was our destination.

Our second day in Seattle, was spent at Mt Rainier. I dont know if writing about it would do enough justice.

We were there in the first week of May, and we got to see snow!!!!! It was beautiful. Fresh white snow, blue skies, clouds, it was just spectacular.

I decided to write less this time.

So here are some of the many many pics we took.

This is the bakery we stopped at, had some delicious, Italian sodas , teas, coffee and yummy egg sandwiches.

Mount Rainier. Majestic beauty!

On our way, to the mountain.

We just wanted a picture from every angle

We went snow shoeing.

It was totally worthwhile. We were lucky, coz the weather was just perfect. Sunny, bright, and just the right temperature,for a perfect day.

On our way back we feasted on some good Indian Chinese at a place called Bamboo Gardens.

It came pretty close to the Indian Chinese I grew up eating in kolkata. Yet another great day had a yummy end !

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Seattle - A must for every foodie. Day 1

So my plan to update my blog, everyday during my visit to Seattle off course did not happen. We were all so engrossed in reviewing our entire days activities, that by the time I actually got some time, I was all set to hit the bed.

Where should I begin, well first things first, Seattle is a foodie paradise.- I think I have said that before about some other place too, never mind. As it is this post is going to be a long one, I might as well get straight to what I have to say rather than give boring intros........

They say it keeps raining in Seattle, but I think Seattle knew we were coming... (just joking!!!), the weather was perfect. In fact after staying in sunny San Diego, I kinda miss the rains. We don't get much of it here. It was raining the night we landed but the rest of the days we were there, it was really nice.

We were putting up with a friend of ours. Its always nice to have locals, when you go some place. This way you can manage to do all the non-touristy stuff. Get to know more about the local things and explore some of the hidden gems obviously with locals as your guiding light.

One such place was the "Brown Bag cafe". Located in Redmond, this place feeds a lot of hungry Microsoft souls as well as the others. Milan our friend took us to this place for brunch.

A very American menu, with huge portion sizes. I loved the pancake (recommended by our friend). I had the banana pecan pancake. Light, soft with a syrup, that was not to sweet nor too thick. I figured it did not have all the unhealthy corn starch to thicken it. The hash browns ordered by my brother in law, were yummy. Crispy, and nicely browned. Milan told us that they started out as a small mom and pop shop and now they have become so big that they have three to four branches. The best part was their little note on the table mat, that said no cell phones were allowed inside the restaurants. Check them out here We did carry a brown bag, cause we just could not finish it all. It tasted yummy the next day too.

Next we headed to downtown Seattle, our destination, the Pikes Market place. Frankly you need more than a day to check out each and every store there. Or if you are a resident of Seattle, you can take your time to explore. Oh, and needless to say, you got to love food.

Pike Market Place.

freshest of produce....

A farmer's market of kinds. With tons of local flavours mingling, its like a mixed goodies bag, with something for everyone. Fish lovers, this is the place to be. The famous Pike Place fish shop is something that all tourists and locals alike like to visit. We did not see it, but apparently the fish monger throw's a fish each time he makes a sale!!!!! hummm, that is indeed an interesting thing to watch. Check them out here
For all those who fancy dipping oils, do not worry, Pike place has that covered too. You can not miss this shop, a few shops before the first Starbucks, this place has a variety of flavours of Olive oil. Club it with there oh so sweet and tangy balsamic vinegar, and all you need is a bottle of good wine and some good music......your dinner is all set. I stopped by and picked up spicy olive oil and balsamic vinegar. The guy at the shop told us not to miss out Market spice. Tucked right next to the fish stall, there are over two hundred spice varieties and over 120 different types of teas, from all over the world.
The olive oil and Balsamic vinegar, my pick.

Picked up Orange Honey Hazelnuts, (the packet is almost close to finish!!!!!)

We had to stop by the first Starbucks. Well I don't fancy Starbucks much, but this is a must for every tourist. Do all the little touristy stuff here. Click pictures, pick up souvenirs and off course have a cup of coffee.

Few other places that caught my attention was, the Jelly store. An array of differently flavoured jellies. I picked up the spicy ginger. Next was The pasta shop. All pastas here are 5 dollars for half a pound. I filled my bag with Lemon Basil Fettuccine and a Calypse Blend.
The bag I picked up from Market Spice.

My husband had to actually pull me out and remind me we were on a schedule and that we could not spend our entire vacation looking at food stalls. Understandable. Though I still felt as if I had unfinished business here, I had to be content with what I saw and bought. We headed for the Space Needle. (an advice: If you are not crazy about views , I say skip this, and spend some more time at Pikes- but again that's my opinion)

View of Seattle downtown, from Space needle.

Get a feel of the place here
A few other places was a cheescake stall. Cheesecakes to go, delish. You can see them make these right in front of you. From fresh cheese shops, to bakeries, from local artists to an entire row of tulip sellars, this place has it all.

the Cheesecake place.

Dinner was at an Indian restaurant. When I am out, I rather avoid Indian food, but this one, as our friends told us, was really good. And coming from locals, we had to give it a shot. Located in downtown Bell view, this place is called Chutney. An upscale restaurant, the cooking is done, in an open kitchen. Apart from the regular stuff, there Bombay aloo is a must try. Spicy and crispy, they have freshly chopped ginger and garlic added to the masala. For starters, they did an excellent job on the aloo tikki too. Our dinner ended with the dessert platter, which had ras malai, gulab jamun kesar pista and mango kulfi.

A perfect end to a great day.

We planned our next day to Mount Rainer......

Thursday, May 7, 2009

I am off to Seattle

This is sooooo funny. Right now I am at the airport and updating my blog. I did not know I would get Internet connection at the airport. But now that I have it, I might as well make the best of it.
This year has been all a blur. We are already five months through. And we did not take any vacations. So we decided to take one. Destination-Seattle.

I have heard so much about Seattle, the greenery, the food scene, and the place in general, that we have been wanting to go there for a while now. Hopefully we will make the best out the three days we have.

I have thought about updating my blog with all the stuff I do in Seattle, that is only if I am able to get on to use my husbands laptop......probably once he is off to bed.

So on that note, here is me signing off. And look out for my posts about my take on Seattle.

chow and happy cooking to all.

Just for any readers who know Seattle, would appreciate if you'll could give me the non-touristy stuff to do in Seattle. I will link back to you'll in my posts.