Saturday, 15 August 2015

USA 2015 Part 14: Sleepless in Seattle

Normally I am an early to bed, early to rise kind of person. Though during this trip I often became a late to bed but still early to rise person. Certainly Seattle was keeping me pretty busy late into the night with fun times! And so it was on my final Seattle day. I had decided my last day in Seattle would be my tourist day. This Seattle trip was great because I got to do a lot of things that you might not think about doing in Seattle, but I still love Seattle's cheesy tourist heart. And in Seattle, that means Pike Place Markets.

Pike Place Markets

One of my favourite Seattle rituals is to pick up breakfast from Cinnamon Works and eat in in a small park (Victor Steinbrueck Park if you are looking for it) overlooking the water (and the viaduct, but you can ignore that). ]Cinnamon Works has several vegan options, including cinnamon buns that have way too much icing for my tastes, so I got a delicious banana chocolate chip muffin and a cinnamon chai, as well as a plum I picked up from one of the fruit stalls in the markets. It was a clear, sunny morning, and the view was beautiful. Mount Rainier was visible but a little hazy, like a pretty painting.

Banana Choc-Chip Muffin and Chai from Cinnamon Works with plum

Waterfront View

Waterfront View

Waterfront View

After breakfast I took a walk and explore through the markets. To be honest I know most of it by now, but I still love looking at all the beautiful fruit and vegetables, poking around the arcade (a visit to Golden Age Collectables is a must for a geek like me), and the peonies... oh the wonderful peonies! They are my favourite flower, and I am always in Seattle in peony season.

Peonies at Pike Place Markets

Mushrooms at Pike Place Markets

A new stall I found was Marnin Saylor, who sells super cute little handmade plush critters (all non-animal materials), the most famous of which is their Donut Cat (though they also had Eclair Bears there as well). I couldn't resist picking up a super adorable Maple Mini Donut Cat to come with me on my travels.

Doughnut Cats at Pike Place Market

I also stopped by Britt's Pickles to try one of their famous (and free) pickle brine shots (it is delicious). I was sad I couldn't buy any of their pickles because jarred pickles do not mix well with an international flight the next day. But they sell pickles individually on a stick, so I was able to munch on one as I wandered around.

Pickle on a stick and Pickle Brine Shots from Britt's Pickles at Pike Place Market

For the first time in four visits, I also stumbled across the famous gum wall. To be honest I hadn't looked that hard for it in previous visits because I thought it sounded pretty gross. Guess what, it is pretty gross.

Gum Wall

The markets get crowded, so a peaceful walk down to the Olympic Sculpture Park seemed in order. I've walked through the park a few times on previous visits, so this time I just stopped at the top for a little rest, some free wifi and to take in the beautiful view before walking up to the Seattle Center.

Olympic Sculpture Park

Obligatory Space Needle shot!

Space Needle

One block behind the Seattle Center is Bamboo Garden, one of the best vegetarian Chinese restaurants ever. This was actually the first place I ate at on my first trip to Seattle in 2011. Pretty much everything is vegan, except for the fortune cookies they hand out with the bill. If you go at lunch, they have huge lunch combination platters that you must order. I ordered Lunch Combination A, which came with soup, a fried potsticker, vegetable chow mein, steamed rice and stir-fried chicken and broccoli. You can pick hot and sour or corn chowder as your soup. I picked hot and sour but it was sad, too much hot, almost no sour. And then I remembered that I had had this soup here before so I already knew not to get it! Oh well, next time it will be the chowder, which is very yummy.

Combination A from Bamboo Garden: Hot and Sour Soup, Veggie Chow Mien, Stir-Fried Gluten and Vetables, Brown rice, Fried Pot Sticker.

The Seattle Center is home to Plum Pantry, so I stopped in there to have a refreshing drink. I ordered the Wild Yam Juice, which is something that has intrigued me for years. It is orange, yam and carrot juice. It was lovely and cool and sweet, just right!

Wild Yam Juice from Plum Pantry

My original plan had been to go to the U District and pick up some Pizza Pi for dinner, as well as some sandwiches for my flight tomorrow from Vegan Haven. However then I realised it is Monday and Pizza Pi is closed on Monday! Instead I caught a bus to Central Co-op in Capitol Hill, which has a good range of vegan goodies and also stocks sandwiches from Wayward. I was able to pick up a nice little collection for plane snacks the next day.

Plane snacks

From there I was able to walk to In The Bowl, a great Thai restaurant. I ordered the Pad See Ew with Fried Tofu and Stir-Fried Vegetables with Fresh Tofu. Originally I ordered the latter with veggie chicken, but thankfully remembered just in time that their veggie chicken has egg in it. Luckily they hadn't made it yet so were able to change it to tofu. Phew! I took these back to Helen's for an early dinner at home. The Pad See Ew was delicious, great sauce and chewy noodles and an excellent noodle to veggie/tofu ratio. The stir-fried had a fun mix of broccoli, pineapple and cashews in a brown sauce. It was all very nice.

Pad See Ew from  In The Bowl

Stir-Fry with Vegetables from In The Bowl

After dinner we went to a birthday party for one of Helen's friends, which ended up in a late night karaoke bar. I would have loved to sing a Kylie song (they had a surprisingly large collection available), but I am far too shy and anxious to sing in front of people! For the party Helen had made this beautiful cake. So pretty!

Helen's beautiful cake

It was a late night, I didn't get to sleep until after 1am and I had a very early start the next day to begin my long trip home. Only one more USA trip posts to go! I know that this post had a lot of Seattle photos in it compared to food photos, but I just love Seattle so much! It is honestly my home away from home. At least for the next 50 years or so until it is completely destroyed in a catastrophic earthquake.

Have you been to Seattle? Did you love it? Do you have a favourite city that you just feel instantly at home in?

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post


I am so thankful that during my time in Seattle I was able to have some good kitty times, especially with handsome Zeno. Cats are my number one requirement for life (followed by food, oxygen, then water at the end), and I often struggle when I am travelling. Of course my own cats are my number one number one! Zeno was very generous with his hugs and purrs, even though I helped Helen out by giving him some yucky medication (if you have a cat vet as a guest, make the most of it!). Love you Zeno!

1 comment:

  1. Hehe. I read "went to a birthday party for one..." as "went to a birthday party of one." That sounded like one of my antisocial birthday parties! :P

    That cake is beautiful! Almost as beautiful as Zeno.

    Gum wall. *shudders*