You know we are big fans of Ethan Stowell and all the good work he’s done at Union, Tavolàta, and How to Cook a Wolf. So we were very curious to try his latest, Anchovies & Olives, which is located in the Pearl Building in Capitol Hill.
Things didn’t get off to a very auspicious start because the restaurant was suffering from a menu malfunction when we arrived on a weekday around 5:30 (something about a printer being down or out of paper–whatever). Only one menu was available, so our server kindly transported it from the table of people nearby whenever we needed another glass of wine or small plate for sustenance.
About 10 minutes later, when menus were finally delivered, I nabbed one and shot it for posterity, below.
We began our meal with an order of the Columbia City Bakery foccacia served (of course!) with a small dish of arbequina olives doused in peppery olive oil, above.
Black Cod with Hen of the Woods Mushrooms
Like the menus, malfunctions continued with our entrées as well. My black cod was supposed to arrive with fingerling potatoes, spring onion, and salsa verde. Spencer’s escolar (an oily rich whitefish) was supposed to come with hen of the woods mushrooms, speck, endive, and brown-butter balsamic. Unfortunately, the kitchen mixed the sauces, so my light, seasonal preparation suddenly became a dense and heavy dish.
Escolar with Fingerling Potatoes
We informed our server, who offered to have the chef re-make the dishes we ordered, but we were en route to a movie, so didn’t have time.
Instead, we shared our entrées part-way through, and ordered sides of Cauliflower Salad with Anchovy Dressing and Conchiglie (little ear) Pasta with Smoked Tuna, both of which were very satisfying choices.
Again, because of time limitations, we passed on dessert, even though our server offered it to us for free to make up for the entrée snafu.
Instead, he comped a glass of wine or two, a nice gesture that helped make up for the two malfunctions.
Would we rush back? Probably not, and not because of the malfunctions cited above. It’s just that we are lucky enough to be able to enjoy Ethan and company’s culinary wonders in our own backyard without worrying about parking in the busy 15th Avenue neighborhood.