Saturday, April 13, 2013
Art Restaurant at the Four Seasons Seattle
On my trip to Seattle, I didn't realize just how much of the city seems to shut down relatively early. By relatively "early" I mean early for someone more accustomed to the nightlife in to so-called city that never sleeps (New York)- So I made a critical mistake- I was killing time, and waiting to decide where to eat. When 10pm rolled around, and I still had not eaten, I was left with few choices, so I went back to my hotel and ordered room service from the attached restaurant instead of searching for a late-night bite in an unfamiliar city only a few hours after arriving.
I had the good fortune of staying in a much more highly rated hotel than usual for this sort of trip due to the vagaries of company/client discount rates and contracts, and the Four Seasons Seattle had a very nice looking restaurant downstairs, that also handled all of the room service for the hotel. I normally stay away from room service- which usually is high in price and short on quality.
There's a first time for everything though, so I picked up the phone and ordered a salad and an entree from Art at the Four Seasons. I chose a chop salad and a spaghetti bolognese to satisfy my hunger- the last time I ate anything resembling a real meal was back on the east coast...
The salad turned out to be very enjoyable- and presented in an interesting fashion- with a wedge of iceberg in the middle, and the rest of the salad essentially deconstructed around it, with the dressing served on the side in a small flask. I'm a sucker for the combination of bleu cheese and bacon, and that served as the center-point of the dish. The other produce on the plate was very fresh- probably purchased earlier in the day at Pike Place Market, only about a block away. While the salad had many components, it still captured a kind of honest simplicity that I enjoy.
The spaghetti bolognese was likewise, artfully plated. Everything on the plate was obviously very fresh. Each component was excellent, from the slivers of parmesan, to the tomatoes, to the basil, and to the pasta itself. The sauce itself, however, was a little bit of a let-down. All the components were obviously high quality, but it didn't quite come together for me. The sauce seemed like it was missing something- and, after much thought, I think it was that certain something that comes from long, slow cooking. I did enjoy the dish, but I wanted to enjoy it even more.
I think this highlights the reason why I usually avoid ordering pasta/tomato dishes when I eat out- most of the time at least. I think I'm somewhat spoiled when it comes to pasta sauces- my family has a long standing tradition of making great tomato sauce (or rather, gravy to use the proper term), so I have a hard time finding similar sauces that can meet my expectations. Maybe it's me, maybe the sauce could've had more depth, and more of a long slow cook time to meet my tastes.