I count myself as one of the lucky ones-- living in Seattle is a food lovers dream. 2 days after experiencing a truly beautiful dinner at Stateside, I'm still glowing. First time at Stateside: Valentine's Day evening. It was barely 5 pm, and the place was already buzzing with excitement. Low-lit industrial bulbs added a romantic and vintage glow to the watery green patina of the dining room, and added to the atmosphere of an exotic but low-key locale. Our server explained the special menu for the evening, which was $70 pp with an optional $30 wine pairing. Each of the 4 courses brought two dishes to share. My partner chose to go with a the Mekong Mule (play on the Moscow Mule, but with ginger shrub instead of ginger beer.. so perfectly balanced and not overly sweet) while I ordered the wine pairing. FIRST COURSE: Prawn and Coconut Mousse on Fresh Sugar Cane, Lemon Balm and Sauce Nuoc Cham (Beautiful marriage of textures and flavors...with the fresh sugar cane a fun treat to chew on at the end. The Nuoc Cham was seriously perfect) Fresh Yuba and Salmon Roe, Bergamot Orange Ice, Chilled Soy Broth. (this was admittedly our first exposure to Yuba, fresh tofu skins, served rather like paparadelle ribbons but in a soy broth. While this wasn't our favorite dish--it came out too chewy or thick, sort of wadding up in the mouth, we loved the accompanying broth, orange ice, and the ultra sensuous salmon roe, which were surprisingly able to be plucked up with chopsticks and popped in one's mouth). Very sensual dish. My wine course was a refreshing 2013 Juve y Camps "essential" Cava. LOVE!! SECOND COURSE: When we saw "Grilled Marinated Pork Neck with Salted Egg Yolk and Chili", listed as a 2nd course, we had no idea that this would be our favorite dish of the evening. Small pieces of the most tender, perfectly charred and seasoned pork sat atop what appeared to be a rice noodle raft, which our server suggested that we roll up and eat summer-roll style, dipping into one of three amazing sauces (hoisin, nuoc cham, and one other). We each wanted 2 more helpings of this.. no joke. Dungeness Crab Cake on Crushed Avocado Black Trumpet Mushrooms, Tianjin Preserved Vegetable Mayo, Pomelo. (Shredded crab with flavor and color explosion on the plate). Wine pairing: 2002 CH Berres, Riesling, Kabinett, DE. Offset the spicy Pork and added to the flavors of the crab dish. THIRD COURSE: Spice Roasted Grouper, Gingered Butternut Puree, Fermented Black Bean-Brown Butter Dressing. (These folks know how to create silky purees...but the black bean-brown butter sauce with the grouper was our second favorite flavor of the evening. Brown butter and black beans for a nutty, umami taste sensation!) Soy Glazed Beef Short Rib, Celery Root Puree, Sesame Green Apple Salad. (can you say succulent?? This is what I have only dreamed of.. falling off the bone tender without the layer of fat I don't enjoy. Perfect!!! Never wanted it to end) Wine pairing: 2014 Illahe, Estate Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley DESSERT: Chocolate Ganache Tart, Vietnamese Coffee Granite, Condensed Milk Ice Cream (Valentines Day wonderfulness-- not overly sweet, with flavors playing off each other the rich, bitter, creamy and crunch) Creme Fraiche Cheescake, Lychee Snow. Truly tasted like Creme Fraiche, lighter than traditional, and oh so much better! Lychee Snow was just that.. snow cone like consistancy, with a perfect refreshing fresh lychee flavor to offset the cheesecake. WINE PAIRING: 2014 Marenco, "Pineto" Braquetto D'Acqui, IT. (not as sweet as a port..just lovely). ----------------- While our seat at a two top table in a row of other two tops in the center of the restaurant were not perfect, our servers were lovely. We really appreciated the low-key style of the super blond dude, as well as our tall dark curly headed waiter who was clearly bursting with pride to be servicing such exciting cuisine. Partner Seth Hammond jumped into serving when it got busy, and he was genuinely interested in our reactions to the dishes. Thank you, chefs and servers for creating a wonderful, imaginative menu and delightful dining experience! Can't wait to return!!
Sharon K. on Feb 16, 2016