Yesterday was Sacnoth's 50th birthday, and he and his bride invited us to dinner with the Monkey Kings at a place in Burien called Bistro Baffi. And it was a very good meal.
I had not been to Burien since Wonder World had been claimed by gentrification, but we found it with little problem. The restaurant itself is tucked into the corner of an unlikely-looking strip mall, but once inside it is a nice-looking place. Most of it is intimate tables and a small bar, but with our bunch (an eight-top, including the Lovely Bride's mother and Little Elf Hat), we took over a back room, apportioned with original art and cases of wine.
The last is a bit of irony, in that Sacnoth is an avowed tea-teetotaler and self-described prohibitionist (though a tolerant one). Each of us took a pledge to abstain in respect to his day, and, as his wife noted, both the party and the wit was dry. So we were surrounded by wine without a drop in our glasses.
The food, on the other hand, was plentiful and wonderful. I think we strained the small kitchen in that the pacing was leisurely, and my saltinboco had been warming in the oven as the final pastas were prepared (the cue is a very, very hot dish at the table). But the taste was well worth the wait, and in the meantime, they served up some peppery polenta and mushrooms that were incredible. The seafood was fresh and well-seasoned and they topped off the evening with a flourless chocolate walnut cake for the birthday boy that was to die for.
The wit at the table was dry, and we ran over all manner of things from politics to our daily lives to Cthulhu. Visitors to the back room included the chef (who took a well-deserved bow) and one of the artists who was showing off her work to friends.
In general, Bistro Baffi (apparently named after the chef's mustache) was a surprise, and I'd like to go back, without the self-imposed declaration of temperance this time.
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