July 29, 2009
Tucked back behind the main dining areas at the ever-popular Steelhead Diner in the Pike Place Market you’ll discover a small outdoor patio with just about four tables and a couple of overhead braziers to keep away the cool Northwest chill. Peekaboo views of Post Alley (depending on where you’re sitting) tantalize at this secret aerie; if the floor were just a few inches higher, you could even see Puget Sound.
But chef and co-owner Kevin Davis’s food is enough of a view. Here’s the Steelhead Diner House Salad–iceberg lettuce kicked up to the highest notch thanks to the addition of chopped hard-boiled eggs, tomatoes, red onion, avocado, crispy bacon, and blue-cheese crumbles with Lorenzo dressing (the best Thousand Island you’ve ever tasted, more like a Remoulade sauce).
And here’s the nightly salmon dish–Copper River king the night we visited–perched on a pond of herb-rich green sauce enlivened with tender artichokes and preserved lemon. Yum!
Whole Grilled Idaho Trout couldn’t have been prettier, served with roasted chestnuts and swimming in a pool of cracked-sage brown butter.
We paired our fish with Mark Ryan 2006 Chardonnay, whose fruit comes from two renowned Washington-State vineyards: Conner Lee and Stillwater Creek. This not-overly-oaked white is balanced, yet focused, with pleasing citrus and tropical-fruit flavors and medium mouthfeel that enhance seafood entrées instead of overwhelming them.
Dense Chocolate Mousse and strong cups of decaf brought our outdoor repast to a sad, but inevitable end, and made us hungry to head back to Steelhead Diner soon.