Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Library Bistro

The Library Bistro
92 Madison Street
Seattle, Washington 98104
Tel: (206) 624-3646

Six out of TenLibrary Bistro in Seattle

Residing inside the beautiful Alexis Hotel of Seattle, the Library Bistro provides a very relaxing and peaceful ambiance. It has the panache of white table linens, but still playful with crayons and butcher paper to doodle. The arched booths lining the far wall and the library motif also provide for a unique and soothing experience.

The weekend breakfast menu at the Library Bistro includes both typical breakfast fair, such as eggs Benedict and custom omelette's, while also providing a selection of lunch entrees. The menu stays until 2pm, providing nice options for the late risers. The prices were very reasonable, considering the location and quality of the restaurant. Breakfast entrees were in the $11-$13 range.

The service at the Library Bistro was above excellent. Never once was our coffee cup close to empty. It was also nice to see all the members of the staff showing strong teamwork to provide such great service without any territorial table areas limiting them from helping out or pouring coffee. The service was very well versed in being present for needs without being overbearing throughout the meal. Our waiter was also very familiar with the dining needs of someone gluten free, and very accommodating.

The food, however, was nowhere near as good as the service. I had the omelet with chevre, mushrooms, and sausage. This came with potatoes and typically toast (absent from mine, of course). She had the classic breakfast with two over medium, bacon, potatoes, and whole grain toast. The food was a bit disappointing and a lot under seasoned. The orange juice was not fresh squeezed, the mushrooms were canned, and the bread used for toast seemed very supermarket bought. The potatoes were overly bland, although they were cooked with some sort of mild pepper (a nice twist). A nice cup of coffee was what made up for most of these shortcomings.

The superior service and atmosphere was far better than the food. If staying at the Alexis, the Library Bistro will provide for a relaxing morning breakfast and a great start to a Sunday. But the disappointing lack of quality ingredients makes this not a place to go out of your way to eat breakfast at.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Becoming a Glutard

I always tell the same story about being diagnosed with celiac disease. That week I had already quit smoking. Completely unrelated, since I didn't even know what Celiac disease was; quitting smoking was a promise I had made. The following Saturday I found out. I could no longer drink beer. Two of my favorite vices gone at once. Do over!

The fear became that a third "vice", the love of food, would be gone as well.

I hope all the major adjusting is adjusted as it has almost been a year. Learning how to order in a strange restaurant, or even find a strange restaurant that would have a chance of not making me ill for days. How to eat during the day. But mostly how to continue the love and passion for good food.

Gluten free eating can also be liberating. There are no processed foods, no fast foods, and you become aware of the ingredients of everything, except in the uncontrollable time of restaurant eating. When controlled though, the same amount of passion, love for fresh ingredients, experimentation, and enjoyment of food still exists.

Explaining this is explaining why accommodations of food needs is an important part of reviewing a breakfast place. Although it might not be an allergy, when a place is insincere or uncaring about a food need, I know. We all know. And as more people are diagnosed and awareness is increased the service business must take this into consideration.

note* blogger's spell checker does not even recognize celiac :)

Monday, December 10, 2007

Sunday Breakfast

Breakfast on weekends brings back memories. Breakfast on Saturdays was for energy; either for the chores of the day or for the activities ahead. Sunday breakfast had no purpose other than to just start the day. Many time just getting the ingredients was as big an activity as preparing or eating. Fresh bagels were often part of the meal, and taken very seriously. I consider myself a purist, and cinammon raisin is not really a bagel flavor. Do not even bring up pesto, blueberry or chocalate when discussing bagels. Being from Florida, fresh squeezed orange juice.

But there is also something about starting the day by going out for breakfast. To have someone else responsible for filling my coffee cup and keeping it full. To starting the day fresh and right.

Here you will find our reviews about the best and worst places to consider what might well be the most important decision of a Sunday...where to have breakfast. We are focused on the Seattle downtown, and we welcome your comments.