Seattle is becoming a serious foodie’s city – from a recent influx of some major chefs to new culinary experiments popping up everywhere. But even in a city with a lot of new things to try, one of the most delicious dinners I’ve had there was at an oldie-but-goodie: The Harvest Vine.
Situated in Seattle’s residential Madison Park area, The Harvest Vine is a small and intensely intimate place- perfect for parties of two and conducive to good conversation. And in true Spanish style, it is also a very warm space: warmly lit, friendly service, and cozy atmosphere. Even though the ambience is fantastic (and just what I needed that evening), it was the food that truly stood out to me. Harvest Vine is a tapas restaurant so all the portions are served in small plates for sharing- and everything I had was just so delicious! The head chef, Joseph Jimanez de Jimanez, is a Basque native (from San Sebasatian, one of my most favorite cities in the world) who brings with him tried and true recipes from the old country and flies in many of his ingredients from Spain. The result is very authentic and tasty, yet still down-to-earth, dishes. I don’t think there was anything on the menu that we didn’t love- from the beefsteak tomatoes to the scallops to the duck.
Jimanez’ wife Carolin handles the desserts as the pastry chef as well as stocks the restaurant with her favorite Spanish wines. We each had a couple glasses of a full-bodied Spanish red to accompany our meal and then shared a glass of port. Although I am not usually a dessert person, I did enjoy every last bite of the fruit tart that I ordered. Simply put, there was nothing on the menu short of “great!” And for those of you who aren’t in Seattle in the near future, their website publishes seasonal recipes so you can recreate a little bit of the restaurant at home.
But what I love the most about Spaniards and their culture is their unwavering sentiment that friends are meant to be cherished and life is meant to be enjoyed. My evening at The Harvest Vine was such an experience: having many laughs and conversations with a good friend over a truly great meal.