Foodie Paradise – Eden Hill

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Eden Hill is a tiny, unassuming restaurant that seats 24 at the top of Queen Anne that has been receiving rave reviews for their avant garde dishes. The “Lick the Bowl” foie gras cake batter dessert caught my eye, so t0e and I decided to give it a try.

As the restaurant is tiny, and t0e was running really late due to some horrendous traffic (1 hour to cross the 520 bridge – I’m sure Seattle folks can sympathize), the restaurant let us know that we had to be done by 7:30 for the next reservation on the table. We would have only had an hour and fifteen minutes to enjoy our meal and they would be unable to offer us the tasting menu as that needed the full two hours. They offered to move us to the bar where we could take our sweet time and make some hard decisions.

Order from the standard menu to try the much lauded pig head candy bar OR try the five-course blind tasting menu? They wouldn’t tell us what was on the tasting menu, taking into account only dietary restrictions and strong preferences, and telling us that it had none of the dishes from the standard menu. We weren’t sure if we wanted to trust the chef just yet at place we had never been, without knowing what we were getting into, but we figured that we could order the items on the menu that we really wanted, if we still had any room left. So in the chef we trusted, knowing that this chef, Maximillian Petty, had concocted a way to serve foie gras for dessert…

Eden Hill - sweet pea soup with prosciutto

sweet pea soup with prosciutto – the amuse bouche, a chilled soup with a hint of mint to chase a succulent house-smoked prosciutto; thick sliced and cured to bring out the flavor of the meat – this bite set the tone for the rest of our dinner.

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Once In a Lifetime – The French Laundry

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There are some restaurants that are legendary, impossible to get seats for, and renown as the best meal ever eaten – Thomas Keller’s French Laundry is one of these fabled establishments. I went here for my 35th birthday, to check off one of my items on my bucket list and to celebrate with Kipnik and Noblesse D’Coeur. I’ve cooked from multiple Thomas Keller cookbooks and absolutely adore Bouchon and Bouchon Bakery, so it was an absolute dream come true to be able to sit down at a table at the apex of his restaurants, especially on my birthday!  It was more a whim to see if we could pull off this nearly impossible feat, and the fates conspired to make it happen for us.

Making reservations was no easy task either. Kipnik and I started calling at 10am using two lines each to try to get through their system.  If get the menu system, press the button to make reservations and hear a busy tone, hang up immediately and dial again until you get hold music. Then stay on hold for the next 20 minutes and drop everything until speak to person and take whatever slots they have for reservations. There are 74 seats available per night, and everyone will start calling at 10am, so be patient and keep trying. We managed to get a 5:30 reservation, one of the first table seatings for Saturday.

The French Laundry - salmon tartare

salmon tartare – with green onion crème fraiche in a cone; the amuse bouche, their version of lox and cream cheese to whet the palette with a bit of savory – the creaminess of the crème fraiche paired with the crunch of the cone offset the buttery texture of the salmon nicely

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