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Category archives: European


Altura, means height or elevation in Portuguese and Spanish.

Seattle’s Altura most certainly lives up to the elevation of culinary adventure.

I had not left the restaurant, and I already wanted to go back — just the thought of the food I had that night while I am writing makes me salivate.

Altura is on the quieter side of Capitol Hill, near Harvard Exit.

WP_20150502_17_21_20_ProGreeted by the beautiful bronze garlic blossom at the door, the world I stepped into was completely different from the street — busy, lively, energetic; the open kitchen allowed us to watch the greatest show performed by the chefs.

We had requested to sit at the counter to absorb the whirlwind of actions.

Serving dinner only, there are two ways to dine at Altura: three course menu for $75 or tasting menu for $137.

As much as I wanted the tasting menu, I knew we were going to waste food that night because DH was not too hungry, so we went for the three course, and they certainly did not disappoint.

It was an understatement to say I was wowed by every dish.

WP_20150502_17_30_18_ProStarted off with a light pink interesting drink: lightly sweetened and tart, with tarragon, olive oil and rhubarb.

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Osteria Rigoletto

Saw this place popped up on Urbanspoon often, very grateful it was my turn to have a go!

Tucked quietly in South Lake Union, Osteria Rigoletto was a little hard to find since the entrance was obscure from the street.

Yet, once we approached the entrance, it was stunning — the restaurant certainly made a statement.

To my surprise, the stunning entrance opened up to a set of stairs, and the space was actually in the basement.

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WP_20141029_12_57_16_ProWent to Agrodolce during Seattle restaurant week for lunch.

Located in Fremont neighborhood where 35th street bistro used to be, the space looked strikingly familiar.

Agrodolce is one of 3 Chef Maria Hine’s restaurants; others including Tilth and Golden Beetle.

Alll 3 restaurants used local and organic ingredients.

I loved her consciousness in offering vegan and gluten-free alternatives in her restaurant.

I often wonder how restaurant made money serving 3 course meal for $15 — apparently that was no longer the case.

Two-course lunch were presented with 3 choices for appetizers and 3 for main course.

I had the butternut squash soup and clams.

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Sushi: The Global Catch and Il Corvo

Sushi: The Global Catch

The documentary presented the dilemma caused by increasing popularity of sushi around the world.

The first third to half of the movie was a little unfocused: started with interviews with famous sushi chefs in Japan and sushi chef apprenticeship; Tsukiji fish market auction and interviews with the auctioneers;  how the fish wholesaler picked fish, their skills and knowledge.

There was a part about traditional knife making; and a part on the history of Japanese Airlines when they used to import fish to Japan for sushi because they were carrying empty cargo back to Japan from foreign destinations.

The movie also followed fishermen, showcasing the different fishing method: line versus net.

From there on, the movie finally landed in the discussion of overfishing blue fin tuna, and its effect on the ecosystem.

There was the attempt internationally to limit tuna fishing but unfortunately seemed like the policing ability was low so illegal fishing were still prevalent.

There were interviews with entrepreneur farming blue fin tuna in the ocean using baby blue fin tuna, making the argument that it was more sustainable than current fishing practice.

However, this method did not address the fact that baby fish were still required and the fish were not living in their natural state and environment as they were netted or caged in.

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