Visitors to Seattle are often surprised at how vibrant the city’s residential neighborhoods are. Many of these communities are pretty self-contained; offering access to life’s necessities – or at least a whole bunch of stuff to see and do – within walking distance. It is in one such neighborhood that my friend Jackie and I met for dinner the other night.
The area is called Tangletown, located southeast of Green Lake, north of Wallingford, and 1.5 miles from 9 Cranes Inn. Some Seattleites never pass through this appealing stretch of businesses tucked into about two blocks. Anchoring the main intersection of N. 55th Street and Meridian Avenue North is Elysian Brewery’s Tangletown restaurant (you can’t miss the large Tangletown sign), an expanded sports bar that gives off a real restaurant vibe and serves decent food.
But that’s not where Jackie and I ate. We met across the street at Kisaku, which bills itself as “your neighborhood Sushi restaurant.” Our first impression upon entering remained a lasting one: ahh… a soft, subdued place where we can actually have and hear a conversation. Although a fair number of patrons circulated during our leisurely meal, we hardly noticed them. To make matters even better, our server recognized our desire for a non-stop gab session, and gave us great, efficient service without being intrusive or rushing us. And the gentleman who seated us gave us a lesson on folding napkins a new way!
But what about the food? This being Restaurant Week, during which many Seattle restaurants offer a three-course dinner for $28, we hardly glanced at the real menu, which was extensive (not just sushi) and featured a large sake selection (some wine and beer as well). For starters, my crab/cucumber/seaweed salad was tasty and tangy, while Jackie’s (somewhat) crispy shrimp appetizer combined sweet and chili well. Her sushi selection was fresh and yummy, while my black cod was buttery delicious. A pleasant (yet not terribly memorable) dessert came with the meal, helpfully subduing our unrequited hankering for a Mighty-O donut (the shop is directly across the street but closes at 5 p.m.). As much as I love sweets, I never crave a donut…that is, unless I remember that Mighty-O exists to tempt me.
It looks like my next trip to Tangletown will have to be during the day!