This Fried Oyster Is Now My World

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Fried oyster taco at Chavez.jpg

Down at the Pike Place Market, changes are afoot. The new MarketFront, for example, provides Seattle with a front-row balcony view of Elliott Bay, with even more shops and restaurants. But the "Market" has always been more than the sum of its 200+ vendors (flowers & fish, souvenir tee shirts, souvenir bracelets). It's a hub for literally millions of visitors a year who come to gawk, to clog the street, to take selfies, and to grab a bite.

It's heartening, therefore, to report on a new duo of restaurants sharing a space on Western Avenue, just north of Victor Steinbrueck park: Chavez and Mercato Stellino. They're owned by Wade Moller (former partner of Travis Greenwood at the original Cantinetta in Wallingford) and a gang of sure-handed chefs: Gabriel Chavez who also helms the Chavez on Cap Hill; Joe Obaya at the glassed-in pasta-making station, and Emran Chowdhury at Stellina.

As with Tom Douglas's SeaTown SeaBar across the street, these are places designed for tourists (not that there's anything wrong with that!). A lot of visitors have heard that Seattle is famous for oysters but might be reluctant to try one. Chavez has a solution for the squeamish: a fried-oyster taco. I normally prefer my oysters on the half shell, but this is one of the best things I've eaten all year.

Here's the recipe:

  • Medium Pacific oysters, dusted in flour and celery salt
  • For the batter: 1 cup all purpose flour, 1 cup cold soda water, 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • For the slaw: red cabbage, lemon juice, olive oil, red onions, cilantro and dried oregano
  • Sauce: 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 cup Mexican cream, 2 tbsp chipotle Adobo, combine.
  • Pico De gallo: tomatoes, red onions, jalapeno.
Got it? Hey, it's the ingredient list, I get it. You don't expect restaurants to give away the store, do you? Starting with decent home-made tacos. But if you're a reasonably competent you can figure out the rest. Oil temperature, for example. How to slice the cabbage for the slaw, etc. On site, it's $18 for three tacos. Thanks to Green-Rubino for the picture. Bet you can't eat a dozen!

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This page contains a single entry by Cornichon published on December 6, 2017 11:30 AM.

A steakhouse by any other name? Still a steakhouse. was the previous entry in this blog.

Moving Day for 13 Coins: Take My Plate, Please! is the next entry in this blog.

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