Our last two days spent in Seattle gave us the opportunity to explore Pike Place Market. For my birthday, Bethany’s mom gave me a card with a list of their favorite activities in Seattle and some money for each, so we used that as our guide to explore the market. Our trip started off at the very first Starbucks, which opened in 1971. Given the explosion in popularity, this location is basically a tourist trap and pilgrimage destination for serious coffee drinkers. There’s a line that leads down the street, and once you get in you can pick our some merchandise or order a cup of coffee. I decided to simply do the latter. It’s definitely worth the experience of going, especially if you put a Starbucks barista through college.
After getting caffeinated up we headed down a block to Beechers, which boasts the best Mac & Cheese in the world. After eating the bowl that Bethany and I split, I would have to agree that it’s definitely up there. I’m not sure what criteria you use to judge Mac & Cheese: whether you prefer the soft and cheesy Mac, or if you’d prefer the cheese to be baked on and crisp at the top. I’m more of a “crisp at the top” kind of guy, but either way – if you’re a Mac & Cheese fan, this is worth a stop as well.
When you walk down the Market, you’re treated to various samples: smoke salmon, jams and fruits. One of the items we got money for was for peaches, and we samples some ones that were incredibly juicy. They made for an awesome breakfast the next day.
The next day when Bethany’s family game in, we scratched another item off the list: Clam at Pike Place Chowder. Seattle has no shortage of the stuff, but in terms of richness and flavor, we definitely got our money’s worth. They actually had a sampler platter, which I used to try four different types. Their New England style clam is excellent, but my favorite one is the bisque.
Rewind back to Friday night: We decided to split from the craziness that was downtown and headed north west to a recommended restaurant called Ray’s Café. There are actually three locations in Ray’s: a fancy restaurant, a boathouse event center (which was actually hosting a wedding at the time), and an upstairs café with an awesome patio. All of them had an awesome view of the shore. We spent the rest of the evening ordering seafood appetizers and soups while taking in the spectacular view.
One of the final sights we took in before leaving Seattle was a wall along the ally behind the Pike Place Market known as the “gum wall”, where you guessed it – people stuck their chewed gum to decorate everything. You might not want to stand too close to this attraction.
Next up: Alaska!