Monday, June 02, 2008

Back from Seattle

Shot from the Bainbridge ferry.

We made it back from Seattle last night. Besides some souvenirs, I brought back a cold...that's why I'm up at 5:20 AM posting on my blog. Luckily, the trip itself was free of illness. I plan to post some details of the trip, but thought I'd post an overview for now.

I knew this Seattle visit would be one of certain decadence when my first Stone Ruination IPA was handed to me almost as soon as we settled into our friends' apartment. I polished off three of those beers and many, many wings. (I know, I know. I left the home of barbecue only to eat wings in the Pacific Northwest.)

We slept in the next morning and made our way to the Bainbridge Island ferry. Bainbrindge Island is one of those little yuppie towns with quaint shops and 500K+ cottages. The only difference between this town and others is that it overlooks all of Seattle, keeping it in close proximity to an urban center. We had some delicious omelets and undercooked potatoes for brunch, wandered through the overpriced shops, and I had an amazingly rich milkshake before returning to the mainland.

Once downtown, R and I walked (a long walk) to the sculpture garden and back to Pike Place Market. We bought a woodcut print and saw a fish get tossed while people cheered and cameras flashed. But the real reason we stopped was to pick up a bag of donuts. Unfortunately, the Daily Dozen was closing up shop for the day and only had full bags for a reduced cost. This means there were no fresh donuts. Oh well.

The only picture I've been allowed to take of R since she became preggers.

After buying some cool Nikki McClure prints and numerous progressive publications at Left Banks, we headed up Capitol Hill to meet our host, M. We did some more shopping before landing in Elysian Brewing for a sampler of beers. I plan on writing more extensively about my the beer consumption on my trip, so that topic will have to wait.

M, knowing me very well, took us over to Sonic Boom Records for me to get my reckid fill. I left the store with some nice finds. There was an Elliott Smith 7-inch ("Needle in the Hay") I did not expect to find. I also bought the last Final Fantasy album that does not
seem to exist in COMO. St. Vincent made my list, but I could have purchased that anywhere. The store had an extensive collection of books from the 33 1/3 series. I bought the book on Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea. But the discovery of the night came when the store's staff played Port O'Brien's All We Could Do Was Sing. There will definitely be more written on this band in lim. You can be sure of that.

M's other half, A, took us out for a day of gluttony the following morning. First there was Salumi where we waited in a line down the street for a spot in the tiny storefront to swallow our meaty, Italian sandwiches. Then, after a brief stop at a fancy cheese shop, we visited a boutique where R could have a new purse custom-built for here. Since neither A nor I were interested in purses, we walked down to The Viking for a couple of IPA's.

Once R was done, the decadence continued as we drove over to Theo Chocolate. Unfortunately, we were unable to slip in for a tour, but trying the samples and loading up on chocolates to take home was rewarding enough. Besides that, no tour allowed us to head
across the street for yet even more beer at the incredibly well-stocked Brouwer's Cafe. Never before have I seen more unique selections of beer in my lifetime. Again, there will be a beer post with more details to come.

We then made our way to Bottleworks. This shop was the beer-equivalent of a good, independent record store. The kid in the candy shop metaphor just does not do this store justice. I was able to limit myself to just a few items, some to have before we left and some to take home. The pic to the right sort of gives you an idea.

That evening we all went out with an old YMCA camping buddy of mine, Russ. We hit a Thai restaurant that was decent but provided terrible service. Russ wanted to continue the night elsewhere, so M took my pregnant better half home and we hit Linda's Tavern for some pints of the good stuff before stumbling home (or, more accurately, taking a cab).

Saturday was as packed as the previous two. We started out with brunch at the incredibly delicious and highly recommended Portage Bay Cafe. I then got my opportunity to explore the Experience Music Project at the Seattle Center. The EMP had some interesting exhibits on Seattle music and Jimi Hendrix. Plus, the fact that it's one of Frank Gehry's more notorious buildings is a bonus. However, the museum was sort of lacking in its size and scope.

I followed up my EMP experience with two more local music stores, Silver Platters and Easy Street. Silver Platters was overrun with new and used DVD's, but it did provide me with a Bill Callahan CD and Grand Archives' new disc. Easy Street was more my kind of record store. They had an extensive vinyl selection, but I realized the limitations of my packing situation and stuck to CD's and 7-inches. The store had the Cap'n Jazz anthology plus 7-inches from a COMO band (White Rabbits) and a group from C-bus (Times New Viking).

We then hit West Seattle for some more browsing and refreshments before returning to M's apartment and our myriad of leftovers.

This was maybe my most varied trip to what is my favorite city. We did so much that I will surely write more about the beer, restaurants and record stores. Plus, I have some reviews to catch up on. Now, if I could just get over this cold.


GE said...

Welcom back. Is Sonic Boom the record shoppe with the diner in it? Great one. Also, was Salumi amazing? That's the one thing I was bummed I missed when we went last summer.

comoprozac said...

I think the Easy Street in West Seattle has a diner. The Sonic Boom I went to did not contain any food. Salumi was so good. My take on the consumption can be found here.