Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Seattle, WA: Dahlia Lounge

Dahlia Lounge | 2001 4th Ave. Seattle, WA | (206) 682-4142 | hours vary depending on day, call or check website for hours |

{Gaspacho dugeness crab, cucumber and watermelon} 
On our last evening, we went to Dahlia lounge to enjoy a nice sit down dinner. It only seemed appropriate we patronize a Tom Douglas establishment given that he's pretty much an institution in the city. Chances are if you're walking around the downtown area, you've like passed by one of his restaurants... he owns 12 establishments. Serious Pie which we visited twice during our visit is another one of his establishments. I think the menu at Dahlia Lounge is what you'd think of when you think Pacific Northwestern with some Asian influence. Its fresh, and bright with with some Asian undertones.

We arrived early enough to enjoy the happy hour. And what a lovely hour it turned out to be: and ode to the tomato. We ordered the gaspacho, anchovies, and squash blossom which all prominently presented the tomato as a star ingredient. I think of the three appetizers, the gaspacho was my favorite. The watermelon was a unexpected surprise and dungeness crab added a nice touch. Being from the Bay Area, dungeness is king of crabs to me.

EHK and I usually order different dishes when we dine out so we can try different dishes and this meal was no different. He also usually lets me choose the 2 entrees we dine on. The roasted five spice duck is what brought me in the door and the pappardelle caught my eye when I perused the menu. Chinese BBQ style roast duck is probably my guiltiest pleasure. All the flavor and textures in the meat, fat and skin? How can one resist??? It would most likely be my last meal if I could request one. So I was all excited about this 5 spice roast duck but maybe it had too much expectation to live up to. I was underwhelmed by the flavor and doneness. It was a little blander than I expected and dryer than I prefer. I actually think the best part of that dish was the rice which reminded me of the scent of coconut. I was more happy with the pappardelle dish. Late summer in Seattle... I couldn't think of something so appropriate to eat. It looks like such a bright and happy dish with all the colors. I felt equally as happy and bright to consume all the fresh ingredients and homemade pasta. I'm a sucker for pasta made in house. If its made under the same roof I'm going to consume, I almost always order. EHK was craving fries. An odd thing to crave given the other items we ordered right? It was ok. Not the most amazing fries I've had and not the worst. I probably felt underwhelmed since it didn't really go with the entrees we ordered.

Dessert? Ahh... the doughnuts fried to order is the second item that brought me in the door. If you haven't had a doughnut still hot and blazing to your fingers then you're missing out. As a child I loved doughnuts and I was so delighted when my parents were weighing the option of purchasing and running a doughnut shop. They even went to learn how to make doughnuts with a local mom and pop shop. My parents can make a decent glazed doughnut. Alas, they gave up that dream and went with laundromat instead... a better choice given today's economy and that people tend be more health conscious in their eating choices nowadays compared to 15 years ago. Doughnuts usually don't make the top 5 healthiest breakfast choices. One could probably give up that daily doughnut but give up the weekly wash? Back to these doughnuts. I can ignore the doughnut police for this case. As expected, they were piping hot heavenly light pillows of dough tossed in extra fine sugar. They were served with ramekins of vanilla marscapone and fresh peach jam. Oh I was delighted to make little warm peaches and cream sandwiches. I like an interactive dish every now and then.

Come here for an overall lovely meal. Not all the elements of the meal were perfect but we had a great evening and were delighted with the experience.
{Astoria anchovies ceylon tomatoes in virgin oil, giant green olives, garlic toast}
{Squash blossom linguica stuffed zuccini flower, fresh tomato sauce, parmesan}
{Pappardelle pasta, alvarez farms summer squash, zucchini blossom, crushed tomato, parmesan, basil}
{Side of fries}
{Rotisserie roasted five spice duck, aromatic jasmin rice, house kimchee rapini, soft duck egg, cucumber quick pickle}
{Doughnuts, fried to order with vanilla mascarpone and fresh peach jam}
{fish lamp, flight of rosés, dahlia on menu cover}
Dahlia Lounge
2001 4th Ave. Seattle, WA
(206) 682-4142
hours vary depending on day, call or check website for hours


  1. Gorgeous photos! Esp of the pillowy donuts. I really wanted to go here and we were planning on it for our last night also, but FH wasn't really feeling in the mood after eating nonstop during our trip. Now I really wish we had tried it.

  2. Those doughnuts look delicious!!

  3. Hehehe, Dahlia Lounge and Serious Pie were our Tom Douglas visits, too. Really great stops... I liked Serious Pie better of the two, but that's not at all a knock against DL. Beautiful shots!


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