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Saturday Night on the Hill {Barrio Capitol Hill}

April 26, 2011

I didn’t take this photo. B took it from his bike ride through the Olympic Sculpture Park Saturday. I couldn’t resist sharing it, though. It was such a beautiful day in Seattle. Officially the warmest day of the year at around 67 degrees, it was definitely that pivotal day each year when the city is transformed (even if only briefly) for the first time into an amazing Disney version of itself. When I started to tell people I was moving to Seattle, the most common question I heard was “How will you deal with the rain?” I assured everyone I didn’t really like hot weather and much preferred cool weather, so it wouldn’t be a problem. In all honesty, despite a really nasty first Winter, I didn’t really realize I was struggling with the weather here until it changed. That’s sort of how it works. You just go along, used to the gray, damp, cool and you don’t really think it’s bothering you until that first sunny day. You don’t realize how bad you felt under the clouds until you realize how good you feel in the sun.

We’ve had an especially nasty April this year. While we don’t truly expect great weather until July, we normally can count on something better than what we’ve had this year. Of course, the sunbreak was short lived. Sunday we were back to clouds and rain. Those commercials advertising Easter outfits for the whole family feel so foreign here. Your kids would freeze if you dressed them that way here for Easter. We enjoyed the sunny Saturday, though, and capped if off with dinner at Barrio with our fellow Kentucky fans, J and K.

We hadn’t seen them since that last night at Sport and none of us were in a particularly great mood after that last game, so B and I were looking forward to seeing them under better circumstances. I had a little trouble finding us a reservation at a reasonable hour any of the places we felt like going, so we were glad J and K were up for a late 8:45 reservation at Barrio (though I think we were all ready to eat our arms by the time we sat down to dinner). Since we had some time before dinner, we met at Tavern Law for a drink. We totally won the parking lottery landing a spot just a block away from Tavern Law (which is two spots down from Barrio). This is exciting on Capitol Hill, but especially on a Saturday night.

I do love Tavern Law and I’m looking forward to going back soon for some fried chicken. They have amazing fried chicken.

Anyway, on to Barrio. The trouble with dining with friends (and I mean trouble in the best way possible) is that I’m not as observant of what’s happening around me. I tend to pay less attention to my surroundings and more attention to my dining companions. This is a good thing, of course, and I’m happy to be fully present. I just find after dinner that I struggle a little to qualify the whole experience of the meal.

I must have gone through a hundred menu options before settling on what I would have for dinner. Everyone else seemed a little more decisive, and when it came time to choose, we were all ready. As a table, we shared an order of yucca fries and an order of queso fundito. I forgot to take a photo of either. Both were fantastic. B and I love Barrio’s yucca fries. I think I may have covered this before. Yucca is the state flower of New Mexico. I’m always curious what part of the yucca the fry comes from. No one ever seems to know.

For entrees, B chose the Grilled Prawn Enchilada. K had the Guajillo Chicken Enchilada. For J it was the Carne Asada and for me, the flank steak tacos. No one was disappointed and J and K were both great sports about my shoving my camera into their food! They offered, ok?!

Grilled Prawn Enchiladas

Carne Asada

Grilled Flank Steak Tacos

And the meal didn’t end there. I was thrilled to learn that J loves Creme Brulee as much as I do. So, for the table… Twin Dulce de Leche Creme Brulees.

Dulce de Leche Creme Brulee

We took a long time with dinner. So is the case when the conversation is easy. Aside from the fact that J and K are just really fun, easygoing people, it’s really, really nice to spend time with people who don’t work for our company or in our field. It’s astonishingly refreshing, really. When you work in the world of high tech, it’s too easy to get caught up in work talk… even when you don’t work directly together. I love that they are interesting, smart and accomplished and not at all involved in the same realm of work that we are. It’s fantastic.

We had a really nice time at Barrio and even got to see a large man in Easter Bunny ears and assless chaps. So is Saturday night on the Hill. The food was great and the company even better. J and K swear there isn’t much in the way of restaurants on Mercer Island where they live, save a few pizza joints and Chinese takeout places. Both sound good to us. Next time we’ll venture to their neck of the woods. Pizza on the Island sounds like a fantastic Saturday night to me.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 27, 2011 12:48 pm

    Try Bennett’s on Mercer Island. I’ve enjoyed my past visits to Barrio. I need to schedule another visit.

  2. April 27, 2011 2:03 pm

    Thanks for the suggestion! Looking forward to getting out there!

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