It is a tradition among my food blogging friends, especially those dining in and around the San Gabriel Valley, to sip milk tea following late night meals. Chewy tapioca balls are a common add on, but usually my company prefers their drinks straight up and fully caffeinated. While a post-dinner milk tea is perfectly lovely, I’d like to propose a new ritual that’s equally sweet, social, and local: hot fudge sundaes at Twohey’s Restaurant in Alhambra.
Twohey’s (pronounced “2EE’s”) has been around the San Gabriel Valley since 1943. The restaurant’s symbol, a gentleman with a clothes pin pinching his nose and tears running down his cheeks, is known as “The Little Stinko-O.” It was trademarked by the restaurant’s founder Jack Twohey upon overhearing a woman exclaim, “Oh, Stink-O,” when a patron seated next to her was served a hamburger garnished generously with onions and pickles. True story.
The Astronomer and I have driven past Twohey’s florescent-lit “Little Stinko-O” sign hundreds of times over the years, but it wasn’t until Jonathan Gold mentioned the restaurant’s famous hot fudge sundaes in an old column that I had any desire to check it out. Following last Friday night’s pho feast at Noodle Guy, it was finally time to put my curiosities to rest.
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Down home meals prepared with local ingredients and served in hip but homey settings are a Seattle specialty, so The Astronomer and I found ourselves eating plenty of American comfort food during our stay.
After such thoroughly satisfying meals at both Local 360 and Steelhead Diner, we did not hesitate to seek out another upscale diner experience. This time, we headed to Capitol Hill’s Skillet Diner for lunch.
Skillet Diner began as a mobile food trailer called Skillet Street Food, which was launched by Chef Josh Henderson in 2007. The trailer garnered a passionate following throughout the Pacific Northwest serving American comfort food prepared with classic technique and seasonal ingredients.
The brick and mortar restaurant, which opened in spring 2011, serves the same kind of easygoing fare that resonated with fans of the mobile establishment.
The Astronomer and I grabbed two seats along the counter which peered into the restaurant’s open kitchen. We worked up quite a sweat trekking from downtown to Capitol Hill, so we were pleased as pie to be greeted with a bottle of chilled water and ready mason jar glasses.
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The Astronomer and I had a most satisfying brunch at Local 360 during our trip to Seattle. We dined here on a whim while walking through Belltown and left thoroughly content with our impromptu choice. Everything from the food to the service to the ambiance was just our speed.
The rustically appointed restaurant was lightly packed on a Sunday. We were seated quickly at a table fit for four and presented with the restaurant’s “Daytime” menu, which is served daily from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
“Local 360” refers to the restaurant’s commitment to sourcing most of its raw ingredients from within 360 miles of Seattle. There are certain items like lemons, limes, and coffee that do not grow in the area anytime of the year, so those are sourced from the closest place possible.
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Whenever The Astronomer travels out of town for physics conferences, I usually stay home and revel in our quieter-than-usual apartment. However, this past August I packed my bags and came along for the ride to Seattle. In between powwowing about the latest developments in the field of plasma, we wined and dined on amazing Pacific Northwest cuisine.
For our first lunch in the city together, we stumbled upon Steelhead Diner near Pike’s Place Market. The restaurant is set atop a hill with terrific views of Elliott Bay and the Olympic mountains.
A collaborative effort between Chef Kevin Davis and his wife Terresa, the restaurant’s focus is contemporary diner fare inspired by the seasons and scenery.
Every meal at Steelhead begins with a basket of crusty bread accompanied by a slab of butter drizzled with olive oil and herbs.
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