Staple & Fancy Mercantile

Kristi

First of all, let me say that the location of this restaurant is a bit odd… We thought our car’s nav system had gotten us completely lost! The neighborhood is a bit industrial, and the front of the restaurant blends right in with the area. Once we saw inside, though, we knew we were at the right spot. The space feels like an old mercantile store (and perhaps onceĀ  was one), complete with the main wall having what we assumed was an old, original advertisement still painted onto a brick wall. Very cool, and they did a great job keeping with that theme throughout. I also liked the openness of the entire space; we had a booth right across from the kitchen, and watched the chefs all night, trying to figure out what they were making, and which of those dishes would end up on our table!

We opted for the family style supper, which consists of 4 courses for $45 a person. Here’s what we had:

1st course: A total of seven small plates. Really, more like courses 1-7!

Anchovy with chickpea puree:
A nice blend of flavors, on top of extra crunchy toast…

Beef tartare:
Quite fresh, but surprisingly not as flavorful as I’d expected…

Olives:
Really good, and just salty enough without being overpowering..

Soft boiled egg with anchovy:
I was surprised this was so cold, but it was tasty, and the yolk still oozed out nicely.

Fried oysters with red pepper aioli:
The oysters were crisp, fresh, and flavorful on their own, but even better with the slightly spicy aioli.

Bbq chicken wings:
I’m not a huge fan of wings, but these were quite good. Slightly crispy, hot, and covered in sticky-sweet BBQ sauce.

Corona beans with grilled fennel:
The grilled fennel was delicious… The beans were quite good, especially paired with the basil strips.

2nd course:

Tagliarini pasta with cheese broth:
Such a simple pasta dish, and so well executed! The pasta was unbelievably fresh, and perfectly al dente. So good, that it didn’t need more than the simple cheese broth that accompanied it. It reminded me of an exceptional version of buttered noodles my mom used to make.

3rd course:

Pork shoulder with caramelized onions and polenta:
This was probably my favorite dish of the night. The pork was fall apart-tender, with plenty of herbs to add plenty of flavor. The onions were nice and tart, and the polenta tasted like really good cornbread. A wonderful combination of flavors!

Ricotta cheesecake with cranberry compote:
We were really glad to see the last dish, as we were stuffed! This cheesecake was, thankfully, really light, and not overly sweet. The tart cranberries added a nice touch. Delicious!

We’ll definitely come back to explore the menu a bit more, or to try another version of the family style supper. The service was great, the atmosphere laid back, and the food was exceptional!

Cost: $$$
4739 Ballard Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107
(206) 789-1200
www.ethanstowellrestaurants.com…
Staple & Fancy Mercantile on Urbanspoon


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