Seattle’s Cascina Spinasse: Northern Italian Cuisine
Cascina Spinasse ~ Seattle, Washington – The baby boomer traveling audience is 79 million strong, and we are excited to have the opportunity to scout out some of the world’s best eateries on their behalf.
In our recent visit to Seattle, Washington, we unearthed a real gem that we are dying to tell you about.
Cascina Spinasse is a restaurant in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, and features cuisine from the Piedmont region of Northern Italy. The kitchen is headed by Chef Jason Stratton who completely blew us away with his culinary talent.
Stratton began his career at the age of 16, and has already spent considerable time abroad where his craft became grounded in the Piedmont style. And now, at the helm of Cascina Spinasse, the accolades are beginning to roll in.
We started our gastronomical journey with a wonderful plate of the house antipasti. Unfortunately, I was working with a camera foreign to me (a Nikon D7000 on loan from Nikon USA), and frankly, I completely messed up the photograph of the antipasti. ACK!
However, trust me, it was good. And fortunately, I got my act together before the rest of the dishes came out. Phew!
Before I get too far along, we should also tell you that our waiter brought us a 2008 Pecchenino Dolcetto di Dogliani “Siri d’Jermu” (pronounced see ree dee yer’ moo). This Dolcetto is straight out of the Piedmont region and was the perfect choice for our meal.
As Carol finished noshing on the antipasti, I was presented with one of my favorites: Fegato Grosso con Funghi Porcini (seared local foie gras with roasted porcini). This was some of the best foie gras I’ve tasted. YUM!
Before we got to the restaurant, Carol and I had decided that we were going to share each of the items as we had four straight nights of fine dining to do. Well, the restaurant saw that as an opportunity and they brought us all of their famous Primi. All of their pastas are handmade in house.
The most famous of their Primi is Tajarin al Ragu o Burro e Salvia (fine hand cut egg pasta with ragu or butter and sage). We went with the butter and sage. Bon Appétit recently ran an article on the “10 Best Places for Pasta” and this particular dish showed up in their list. There is some serious yumminess going on here.
Next up was my (David’s) favorite: Cavatelli con Funghi Spugnole (cavatelli with morel mushrooms and marjoram). Absolutely out of this world!
And last, but not certainly least, our third Primi was Tortui di Capretto (tortui filled with braised goat and spring greens). I (David) learned to enjoy goat dishes in the Caribbean. Carol isn’t so excited about it, but she did taste and enjoy this dish. I thought it was outstanding!
Now, as we get our our Secondi, I must tell you that I had to refuse to tell Carol about all of the ingredients of our next dish. If I had explained to her that our next dish was wrapped in caul fat (a very thin lacy membrane that surrounds the viscera of animals) she would have never eaten it.
But let me tell you, our next dish was worthy of a standing ovation. It was Polpetti di Coniglio (rabbit meatballs wrapped in caul fat, with polenta and pickled horseradish condiment). To tell the truth, as I write this article, the thought crossed my mind to buy a plane ticket to Seattle to again enjoy this dish. Absolutely mouthgasmic!
It’s nearly dinner time here in Scottsdale, Arizona and I asked Carol if she wouldn’t mind stirring up some rabbit meatballs. She said, “yeah, right”.
Harummpfff. I guess I’ll need to make another trip to Seattle sometime to enjoy me some rabbit meatballs. Sounds like I won’t be getting them anytime soon in this house.
Did I tell you how good these rabbit meatballs were? Mouthgasmic, I tell you, simply mouthgasmic!
Oh, take a look at these Carote Nuove (baby carrots roasted with sage). Who dreamed carrots could be so good!
Try as we may, we have never made it out of a fine restaurant without the chef absolutely insisting that we sample his/her desserts. This was no exception.
Therefore, as not to be rude to our gracious hosts, we sacrificed ourselves to the task. Yeah, right! Bring on the dessert!
For our dessert we greatly enjoyed Terrina di Torrone (Carrie’s torrone gelato terrine with honey caramel) YUM!
Well, I hope that my photographs have convinced you that no trip to Seattle should be without a night of dining at Cascina Spinasse. I promise you, when we find ourselves back in Seattle, I will be back for more rabbit meatballs.
Did I tell you how good they were?