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  • Txori – Taste of Basque in Belltown

    Posted on | February 23, 2008 | 17 Comments |

    When we heard that the Harvest Vine folks opened a new restaurant in Belltown last fall, we were jumping with joy. Harvest Vine is one of our favorite restaurants in town and we love Spanish food. Then I came to know that Txori is a pintxos bar. Pintxos are the Basque version of Tapas, a culinary delight we discovered during our recent trip to Spain. When we were feasting on Pintxos in Barcelona, we kept wishing how great it will be to have such a place in Seattle. As soon as we got back we heard of this new Pintxos bar less than two blocks from home, what a lovely coincidence!

    Anyway, we couldn’t wait to try it, but somehow we never got around to it till January. When I had to pick a place to meet up with two lovely friends for some much needed girl talk, I didn’t have to think twice. Txori doesn’t take reservations, it is a walk in and seat yourself place. There aren’t that many tables, but we started pretty early on a weeknight, and there were some tables free. By about 7pm, the place was packed and loud (in a good way of course) and so many Spanish speaking people, it almost felt like I was back in Spain.

    The menu has only about 20 dishes, and the price ranges from $2 to $6 per plate. The pintxos are not shareable, they are all bite sized portions except for one or two dishes. Between the three of us, we ordered most everything in the menu. Since Spain was fresh in mind, I can say without doubt that the taste was very authentic! The service is really slow, but having to make so many different dishes hot, I think that is expected. Here are some of the dishes we had, we didn’t have a single bad dish, but some sure stood out above the others, and we had to get seconds and thirds of those.

    Here is a sample of the dishes. Names are directly out of the menu, except for a few items which are not in the menu anymore!

    tartaleta de champiñones 2.50 button mushroom – jamón serrano tart

    tortilla española 1.75 potato onion omelet – alioli

    Txori1 Txori2

    pulpo da feira 3.00 galician octopus – potato – pimentón – lagrima oil

    blood sausage. Loved this, I had to have a couple. Not in the menu anymore.

    Txori3 Txori4

    Salt cod wrapped with Piquillo pepper. This is not in the menu anymore, so I don’t know the Spanish name.

    idiazabal 3.00 latxa sheep cheese – olive oil

    Txori5 Txori6

    pera a la plancha con valdeón 3.00 . grilled pear – blue cheese – walnut .My favorite, I don’t know how many I had!

    An assortment of pintxos.

    Txori7 Txori8

    ensalada de pato confitado 2.50 duck confit – orange – romaine lettuce

    braised oxtail 6.00 . Can’t find this in the menu anymore as well. It was my next favorite after the pear walnut cheese dish. This one is definitely shareable, but I had two on my own.

    Txori9 Txori10

    The dessert selection is nowhere close to the pintxos selection. We had an espresso flan, which tasted amazing. This is a perfect location for a night out with friends, in small groups though. I am guessing it will be pretty hard to secure a table for a large party. We were just three, and it was great.

    The food was so awesome, I couldn’t wait to go back with Siv. So within a couple of days we went back, and this time they had a bunch of specials. Actually more specials than the number of dishes in the menu! And our lovely waitress knew all the dishes, their Spanish names and the English translations by heart! I didn’t take my camera the second time, what a pity, since we had totally different dishes this time around. This is going to be one regular hangout of ours for sure!

    Update: 04/06/08
    Sending this post to a new blog event called Seattle Restaurant Review 360 hosted by Michael over at Herbivoracious. The idea is for different food bloggers to review the same restaurant and compare notes. Very interesting concept! The first chosen restaurant is Txori, since I am out of town during the event I have to send an older post. 

    http://www.txoribar.com

    Txori Bar in Seattle

    Category: Belltown, Spanish, Tapas

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    Comments

    17 Responses to “Txori – Taste of Basque in Belltown”

    1. Nags
      February 23rd, 2008 @ 1:30 pm

      grilled pear looks yummy. i have some pears in fridge and a grill.. shud i? :D

      Why not? Go for it… :) I have been meaning to make it for a while, never got around to it… :)

    2. dhivya
      February 23rd, 2008 @ 2:44 pm

      wow!yummy :drool:

      Thanks Dhivya… :)

    3. rachel
      February 23rd, 2008 @ 8:57 pm

      pear walnut and cheese :( Yes): :smile:

      :) yep that was my fav too..

    4. sra
      February 23rd, 2008 @ 10:02 pm

      we have a tapas bar here but it’s a closed space and full of smoke and loud music so i never visit despite the good food – is that how it is there too?

      Fortunately no smoking here… some places do have loud music, but it doesn’t bother me… Smoke is always a deal breaker… luckily it is a non-issue in the good restaurants and bars.

    5. Pravs
      February 23rd, 2008 @ 10:05 pm

      interesting dishes. Never had expresso flan,love flan :drool:

      espresso flan was great, combining two of my loves, coffee and flan… :)

    6. Toni
      February 23rd, 2008 @ 11:28 pm

      I adore tapas and am delighted that there are a few such places here in San Diego. What a great assortment! Do they also serve the small glasses of wine and beer to go with? :wink:

      :) Wine and beer were normal size, thank god… ;)

    7. Bharathy
      February 23rd, 2008 @ 11:42 pm

      Interesting spread!
      :drool: too many to drool over this time :grin:

      :) good to see you here Bharathy…

    8. Raaga
      February 24th, 2008 @ 12:47 am

      I love the presentation!! And you’re always having so much fun :-)

      :) there is nothing more fun that eating and drinking, that way yeah, I am always having fun ;)

    9. richa
      February 24th, 2008 @ 7:27 am

      those byte size portions look so cute, hv my eyes on that pear/walnut :drool:

      :) yeah, me too… it is so easy to make, one day I will…

    10. Kaykat
      February 24th, 2008 @ 8:46 am

      Mmm … Harvest Vine – that is a favourite haunt! One time, we hung out there late enough that the wait staff started giving us samnplers of their dinner :)

      Txori sounds great, though there are probably only a handful of items on the menu I can try out :)

      You’re sounding like a professional restaurant critic nowadays :razz:

      That is good to know, normally what they eat will be really great food.. next time we will just hang out till they offer us some free food ;) One of my friends is a seafood-vegetarian, and she got enough stuff here at Txori, so you should be okay I think… :)

    11. Uma
      February 24th, 2008 @ 9:11 am

      :smile: Sounds interesting. I liked the grilled Pear :smile:

      That seems to be the universal favorite… :) Thanks for dropping by Uma!

    12. indosungod
      February 24th, 2008 @ 9:31 am

      Lovely lovely – like the Spanish dim sim.

      I have to tell you, the tofu scramble is become a big favorite, the kids love it too, taste very close to scrambled eggs.

      Spanish dim sum, that is a great analogy… :) I love it.. Glad you and the kiddos like the scrambled tofu… I was quite surprized myself that it was so similar to scrambled eggs!

    13. Happy Cook
      February 24th, 2008 @ 10:04 am

      Yummy Lucky you having all the fun eating them.

      :) yep, it is fun eating… just need to start hitting the gym too … ;)

    14. musical
      February 24th, 2008 @ 10:18 am

      The grilled pear thing is so HOT! i mean, really, who would be able to resist that kind of a dessert! Lovely! Do the serve the grilled peppers on their pitxos/tapas menu?

      No, they didn’t have grilled peppers in the menu, or the fried peppers that we had in Spain… I am still searching for those… :)

    15. Padmaja
      February 24th, 2008 @ 11:53 am

      Sig!! Food looks great and spoit for choice eh!! I never tried spanish food till now!! :cry: After looking at those wonderful dishes, I am restaurant hunting now to find one here!!

      Oh Padmaja, you must find one… I am sure there will be plenty of those around you, you will LOVE spanish food… I guarantee it :) ….

    16. Michael Natkin
      April 10th, 2008 @ 3:34 pm

      Thanks for participating in the 360! Here’s the roundup.

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