Archive for December, 2008

Out with the old, in with the new

For every dancing fool ringing in the new year by working up a sweat, there is a dining fool ringing in the new year by eating like a pig. So, yes, my reservations were made long ago, but no, I’m not telling you where I’ll be dining. (Rest assured, it’s not the Space Needle.) There are many options in Seattle for NYE dining, some of them seriously decadent.

* Place Pigalle, in Pike Place Market, is hosting a tasting menu which includes Oysters on the Half-Shell with Champagne Mignonette, Butternut Squash & Lobster Bisque with Lobster Medallions, Steak au Poivre Vert, etc. [LINK]

* Flying Fish Restaurant, downtown, is presenting a special New Year’s Eve menu that includes Seared Duck Breast, Smoked Big Eye Tuna, and Pancetta Wrapped Sturgeon, among other tasty tidbits. They’ve also stocked up on sparkling wines and champagne for the occasion. [LINK]

* The late Canlis crowd will be dining on seven courses, including Amuse Bouche, Fois Gras Torchon, and Washington Squab; early diners will have to console themselves with a mere five courses, including Blue Fin Tuna, Beef Tenderloin and Maine Lobster. Oh, the humanity! [LINK]

* Maximilien In The Market also offers two seatings, with two options for each course of their holiday Prix Fixe menu, including Oysters on the Half-Shell with Champagne Mignonette or Gérard & Dominique Saumon Fumé, and Lobster Bisque or Pork Confit en Salade. Sip B&B after dinner and enjoy the featured entertainment, French cafe music by Rouge. [LINK]

* For felice Anno Nuovo, Il Bistro is offering a four course Prix Fixe with more options than I really care to type out. Except for this: Gnocchi – Fresh House Made Potato Dumplings, Butternut Squash, Drunken Figs and Duck Confit. Oh, whimper. [LINK]

New Year’s is the holiday that makes up for a year’s worth of restaurant newsletters in one’s email inbox: almost every restaurant is doing something special, but quite a few are “invitation only”, i.e. you have to be on the mailing list to confirm your reservation, get the free bottle of wine or complementary dessert, et cetera. If putting on 10 pounds in one night appeals to you, visit the website of your favorite local restaurant(s) and sign on to their mailing list, in preparation for next year’s gustatory excess.

Local markets rock!

My local market

My local market

Last week (was that only last week!), when most of Seattle was snowed or iced in, I heard numerous reports of stores running out of basic items like bread and milk. UPS wasn’t running, many people couldn’t drive anywhere, and in general, cabin fever was running rampant.

Enter my little corner market. Green Market was open every day, and even stayed open late on Christmas Eve. They got regular deliveries, and while their prices are a little higher than Safeway or Ballard Market, they have the convenience of being just up the street.

So Green Market, thanks for being there for the Sunset Hill area. You rock!

list of lists: your n.y.e. options [developing]

3144809771_ed5fa73826.jpg
photo by david hogan [flickr] via our group pool [#]

still scrambling for ways to say goodbye to 2k8? options abound:

  • dinner, dancing, and mysteries. [capitolhillseattle]
  • something animated GIFtastic. [capitolhillebrities]
  • dirty dancing. [threeimaginarygirls]
  • eating and singing along with swedes. [scc]
  • in west seattle. [wsb]
  • protesting, dancing, on a 39 hour bender. [seattlegayscene]
  • stalking the seattlests. [seattlest]
  • in a cathedral, with the symphony, watching improv, sweating to the eighties, under the space needle. [bigblog]
  • having a meaningful time [lineout] at a show, seeing whether Monotonix burn down the Parmount or whether E.S.S. remains jackass-free [lineout]

Anything else? I’ll add more as they turn up.

kexp countdown in progress

In case you forgot to tune in, KEXP is in the midst of counting down the top 90.3 albums of 2008, as determined by listener-voters. I’d previously complained about the voting system [mb], but I’m still curious to see who comes in second place after Fleet Foxes. So far, the infamous 90.3rd spot went Jamie Lidell with Jim. Join the countdown in progress on your radio or internet or just follow along online as the rankings are revealed [kexp]

(Thanks to joe for the reminder and direct link to the mp3 stream [bostonsteamer.lj]. To listen tivo-style you can download directly from the livestream — http://kexp-mp3-128k.cac.washington.edu:8000/ — and skim through the banter. [evan.lj])

Tbirds say goodbye to the Key, hello to "the Show"

It’s always good to go out with a win which is exactly what the Seattle Thunderbirds did tonight, shutting out the Chilliwack Bruins 2-0 in their final game ever at the Key Arena tonight, closing a thirteen and a half years long chapter in Seattle’s hockey history book.

The move to Kent’s new ShoWare Center is not the first relocation in Seattle hockey: Seattle’s hockey teams have played in a variety of venues since our first team, the Metropolitans (the first US team to win the Stanley Cup, way back in 1917) played at the 2,500 seat Seattle Ice Arena, located across from what is now the Olympic Hotel downtown Seattle. It may be one of the most exciting, however. The Show is the nation’s first LEED Silver certified events center, built to exacting standards that promote environmental sustainability and create a healthy building that uses water and energy efficiently. The ShoWare Center seats between 6,500 and 8,000 depending on the event and, most exciting for hockey fans, has been designed to be particularly friendly to hockey as the new home of the T-birds. It’s a beautiful new facility with comfortable seats and great views wherever you sit, perfect for both sports and concerts.

The Thunderbirds debut at their new arena on Saturday, January 3, taking on the Everett Silvertips, but the facility is offering fans and anyone else interested in checking out this new venue a sneak peek at Grand Opening party on Friday, January 2, from 4 to 9 pm. T-birds players will be on hand to greet visitors, as will Buckets Blazes of the Harlem Globetrotters (playing at the Show on Wednesday, February 18). Also on hand will be the Kent Meridian High School Orchestra and dance teams from Kentwood, Kentlake and Kentridge High Schools and an interactive show for kids presented by Radio Disney.

The ShoWare Center is located at 625 W. James Street, in Kent, easily accessible by car via I-5, highway 167, or I-90 to highway 18, but in keeping with the green spirit, I highly recommend taking the Sounder or one of the more than twenty bus routes that serve downtown Kent–there are no less than three major Metro stops with a block of the center. Cyclists can easily get there via the Interurban or Green River trails and take advantage of their 50 onsite bike racks.

Can we be heard here?

Snow Span

Snow Span

I must admit, I’ve been firmly on the side that thought things ran pretty smoothly during our snowstorm. Hospitals remained open, police and fire personal were able to make the rounds, and many people had days of sledding on closed (or not closed) streets. What could better define a fairly successful response to the series of snow days we had recently?

Then I read Joel Connelly’s column in the Seattle PI a few minutes ago. It somehow gave me a glimpse of perspective that numerous blog posts didn’t give me. See, I was home bound anyway during the entire situation, both at my apartment at the top of Capitol Hill and at my mother-in-law’s on Whidbey Island. I had knee surgery on December 12th, less than a week before the snow fell, and I had pretty much planned on being home during this time anyway. So to me, it didn’t seem that bad that Metro couldn’t handle it’s routes or that Seattle wouldn’t salt and properly plow the roads.

Well, anyway, Connelly describes the process that the City, services, and government offices will undergo to upgrade preparation for the next storm. During this process, there are only two opportunities for members of the public to give feedback. I had thought, especially after reading CHS’s post about a Capitol Hill Snowstorm Impact Forum, that the public would get more of a say in the matter. Apparently, again, I was wrong. It seems that the public is only an afterthought in this process. As Connelly states in his article: “It (city council) should face a basic question: Has city government become so beholden to bossy ideologues, and so smitten with mayoral “vision” projects, that it has lost sight of basic services?” If this is how the situation will be dealt with, it’s time we exercised our right to be heard. This is the contact info for the Seattle City Council. If you feel that the city handled the recent snow situation badly, contact them via email or phone and demand a more open public forum process.

Edit to add: Andrew Taylor posts to CHS with the dates/times for the two forums that include public comments:

Tuesday, January 6 at 9:30 a.m. – Joint Meeting of the Transportation and Environment, Emergency Management, and Utilities Committees: Briefing and Discussion with Seattle Department of Transportation, Human Services Department, Seattle Public Utilities, Seattle City Light, Office of Emergency Management and King County Metro Transit. Time will be available for public comment.

Friday, February 20 at 9:30 a.m. – Joint Meeting of the Transportation and Environment, Emergency Management, and Utilities Committees: Establish a detailed Action Plan for improved response. Time will be available for public comment.

a decision on what to do about the viaduct will never arrive

Last year, the legislature told Gregoire and Nickels to choose an option for what to do about the crumbling viaduct by the end of 2008. Guess what tomorrow is and guess who hasn’t made up their minds. Here’s the “dog ate my homework”, asking for an extension into 2009:

“As a result of the continued overwhelming response and input on replacement options from stakeholders, we have asked our respective transportation teams to continue their review. Once this information is in hand, and working closely together, a final recommendation will be made to the state Legislature in January,” their statement said. [times]

A lot of people are clinging to high-throughput and everyone thinks elevated highways are ugly; so my guess is that they’ll hold out until someone finds a pile of money hidden under city hall to pay for a tunnel or wait for another earthquake to come around and finish the job that Nisqually started.

the upside of hard times for artists, hideout 2009

With the economy falling on harder times, every little bit helps. For the artistic community hit by financial downturn, the effects on keeping up a regular drinking lifestyle could be disastrous. Thus, a spot of good news from Hideout owner and art provocateur (the “L” in “PDL”), Greg Lundgren: throughout 2009, visual artists showcasing their work on the storied walls of the Hideout will experience happy hour prices at all hours:

… After days of research, the Hideout announces it’s 2009 Economic Stimulus Plan for visual artists showcasing work at our establishment. For the calendar year of 2009, we extend discounted prices on beer and spirits, to all (80) of our artists, all of the time. You may enjoy $1.50 Rainiers, $2.50 drafts, and $3.00 well drinks from opening to close, 365 days a year. This economic stimulus plan expires on December 31st, 2009, at which time we hope the United States economy has sufficiently recovered and art sales have returned to pre-depression levels. … [arttogo]

The rest of the announcement is available at Regina Hackett’s P-I blog [arttogo]. Anyone have any other creative discount programs to tide us over until the economy gets saved?

We have a winner!

Lenin in snow
photo by orionlee [flickr]

This photo was just voted as the favorite (by your Seattle Metblog authors) for the photo contest and has won Orionlee 2 tickets to the New Year’s Eve show at the Paramount! Congrats to Orionlee and thank you to everyone who submitted your awesome snowy photos. They were all fabulous and it was very hard to pick a winner. You can see all of the entries here.

in other blogs : catching up with the internet by ignoring most of what was posted last week. what did I miss?

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photo by machel spence [flickr] via our group pool [#]
  • You guys, 2008 is almost over. Maybe you’re still needing to decide on your favorite tracks for your bloglist? KEXP helps with fifty free downloads to prime your soon-to-be-nostalgic playlists. [kexp]
  • Maybe you’d heard this rumor already, but now Ben Gibbard and Zooey Deschanel have made their crush official with a real live engagement. [vulture]
  • Yeah, the snow’s all melted away into gross puddles, but Metro is still taking a break. [seattletransitblog]
  • Starting Thursday, drunk driving suspects can continue driving with the help of cash, a special license, and breath analyzing technology. [times]
  • Ballard holdout Edith Macefield wrote a long novel in her little house. [citizenrain/nyt]
  • Although we didn’t entirely reclaim the literacy crown from Minneapolis (whose airport’s bookstores are certainly superior to ours), this year we’ll have to settle on sharing. Now to negotiate a tiara custody agreement. [fimoculous/usatoday]
  • AGENDA! If I wasn’t jetlagged I’d go see Tallest Man On Earth tonight. If you’re in Ballard, you should trundle over to the Sunset and see this sort of mysterious dylany Swede. [reverb]
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