A Meaty and Much-Liked Meal at 5 Corner Market Bar & Kitchen

5_corner_raviolo_500When I’m not on assignment and can choose a restaurant of my own, I face the same question as everyone else: Where, oh where, to go out to eat?

Here in Seattle, those who know me know I gravitate toward Asian cuisine, which is also what I’m likely preparing if I’m cooking at home. I don’t get bored with it. Like chefs who want a break from all the creamy, complex, and heavy foods, sushi (or, even better, sashimi) would be my first choice—but it’s too expensive (so a rare treat), and I tend to save that appetite for annual visits to Japan.

Chinese food, especially spicy Sichuan, is always a top choice for me. But I’m happy with most any noodle or dumpling, which lands me also in Korean and Vietnamese (and other southeast Asian) restaurants quite a bit. (I would go to more than my two favorite Thai restaurants if I didn’t cook that cuisine at home so often.)

But with quick trips to Chicago, D.C., and Boston these two weeks only allowing me one real meal in each city, I stepped back and thought about how I research restaurants to make the right pick. Urbanspoon and Chowhound are great places to start, and I then utilize any other local resources I can find. When I boil down my world of choices in such cities, I find that it’s offal and other oddities that attract me most. And small plates, so I can sample as much as possible. Such food is often found in gastropubs. (Bonus: A pub means that, as a solo diner, you can comfortably sit at the bar or counter.)

In Seattle, if I meet someone like myself, I typically suggest places like Quinn’s, Spur, Joule, and Harvest Vine for small, interesting bites. And now I’d recommend giving 5 Corner Market Bar & Kitchen a try. It’s located in the old Lombardi’s space in Ballard. Chef Sam Crannell actually worked previously at Quinn’s, and with an extensive beer list, you can expect a great gastropub experience.

5 Corner Market recently welcomed me in for a meaty dinner—from pheasant to foie gras to a rack of ribs. I was quite impressed with the flavors and the quality of the beer pairings.

Here’s the menu:

5_corner_mushroom_500Smoked king oyster mushroom, sunchoke puree, carrots, paired with Bourgogne des Flanders, Brouwerij Timmermans-John Martin

5_corner_raviolo_500Pheasant ravioli & chasseur broth, paired with Hennepin Farmhouse Ale, Brewery Ommegang

5_corner_oxtail_500Oxtail, pommes Robuchon, shaved foie gras torchon, parsley, paired with Damnation, Russian River Brewing

5_corner_pork_500pPork belly, black truffle grits, Mad Hatcher farm egg, BLiS maple vinaigrette, paired with Raison d’Etre, Dogfish Head (see here why this course is so sexy)

5_corner_ribs_500South Carolina mustard bbq ribs, bacon potato salad, paired with Grimburgen Dubbel, Brouwerij Alken-Maes

5_corner_dessert_500Sticky toffee pudding, caramelized banana Anglaise, smoked sea salt, paired with Choklat (Imperial Stout), Southern Tier Brewing

Note: If you like what you see, a reminder that 5 Corner Market is hosting the next installment of the Sexy Feast dinner series. The Sexy Feast dinner at 5 Corner Market is this Monday, February 21, with space available and reservations required. More information is available here.

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