At the Pike Market in Seattle – where else would we be?

April 15, 2011

We rise early, and after tuning up our blog at a coffee shop, head to two wineries that we visited on our culinary tour of Seattle in 1999 – Chateau Ste. Michelle and Columbia. Both wineries are extremely busy at noon as they are part of a 40 winery passort program. People everywhere are pulling up in limos or busses with wine glasses in hand. It’s impossible to do a tasting, so we browse the wine stores which are gorgeous and I buy another cookbook (wine pairings with small plates) and a few wine and table accessories.

We head to Seattle, find reasonable parking just blocks away from the Pike Place Market and venture down to the waterfront. Pike is one of our all time favourite markets and if you love markets, this one is a must. It’s 104 years old (would you believe that our City Market in Edmonton is older?), is four stories high and goes on for blocks. The entrance by the bronze pig, is the famous fish monger, Pike Place Fish and sure enough, crowds are gathered around as fish are being thrown from vendor to buyer. This fish stall is world famous and their technique for customer service is a brand that is used by companies around the world. I’m proud to say that Gourmet Goodies used their program back in 2002 and I still have great memories of signature moments resulting from the training; ie. kitchen staff would wave to the traffic and passers by in the morning on their way to work, resulting in smiles for staff and the viewing audience – exactly what the Pike Place Fish market program promotes – happy staff and happy customers.

The market is going through some renovations and I’m looking for the Three Sisters Bakery, that was outside, and voila, there it is in a temporary location in a newer part of the market. The rugalech (rolled cookies with sweet nuts and/or fruit/jam fillings) are a must-have along with a reuben sandwich. We now have enough sustenance to continue on through the market, making note of food to buy for dinner that we’ll cook at our campsite. We continue through the market heading for Pioneer Square. It looks like Pioneer Square has changed since our last visit. A once vibrant re-developed part of the old town, is not so vibrant anymore. We head back to the market, pick up some food purchases, head back to the van and on to our second night of camping where we prepare our campsite meal: pork chops (really rolls) stuffed with breadcrumbs, spinach and Swiss cheese, paired with blanched Broccolini finished with some Planeta Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar. Good tasty ‘campfire’ food! Bed early as we plan to reach Portland on Sunday in time for their market.

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