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Old Main Street, Downtown Bellevue


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OK, so maybe I'm behind, but I don't recall, (nor did a search turn up) any mention of either of these places.

Now, as Seattleites we all know, quite smugly I might add, :raz: that the eastside is a culinary wasteland for the most part, with a few bright stars here and there, and WAY TOO MANY chain restaurants and fast food joints. I'd like to announce that today I found not one, but two exceptions to this rule in old downtown Bellevue.

First is Zizo Market, a little Mediterrean/Middle Eastern market/deli on old Main. Wow, lots of fabulous ingredients here, ala PFI. AND they have a deli, offering sandwiches (including Lamb Shwarma) they have salads, tabouli, hummus, babaganouche, 2 kinds of mortadella, several kinds of pita. Tons of olives, lots of halal meats, all kinds of cheeses, lots of canned goods and unique things (a slab of apricot paste?) sour cherry preserves, all kinds of peppers. Wowie! It's high on my return list. Unfortunately, I didn't get anything because it was in between bkfast and lunch but I'll return to do some sampling and try a sandwich or two.

Coffee was on my agenda so my next stop was just down the street at a place called Belle Pastry. Lots of beautiful pastries, all drool-worthy, they also make the refined style of baguette (as opposed to the rustic style) and I just had a sandwich made with it tonight and it's a winner. They also have chouquettes :wub: those fabulous little puffs of pate à choux sprinkled with rock sugar. Now we don't have to travel south 3 hours to Saint Honoré to get them!!

This is probably my favorite area (besides Bridle Trails State Park, of course) of the eastside. It actually has a feeling of history and charm. Go visit these places and keep them in business :smile:

Zizo Market

10204 Main St

425.646.9496

Belle Pastry

10246 Main St

425.289.0015

Edited by malarkey (log)

Born Free, Now Expensive

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For years and years, Bellevue has been a restaurant wasteland. Good restaurants would come in, stay for a while, and then close up shop due to lack of business. There were a few noteable exceptions, but they survived mostly on a loyal customer base instead of a real awareness that Bellevue had good restaurants.

I would often tell restauranteurs who were thinking of opening up in Bellevue that they should instead wait for a few "deep pocket" chains to set up shop and establish downtown as being a destination point for restaurant "browsing".

While we might eschew chain joints such as the Cheesecake Factory, the appearance of such in the center of town has re-invigorated the awareness of the fact that there "is" a downtown in Bellevue. Ok, so it's mucked up traffic quite a bit, but there's always a cost.

The next stage, is for an area of town to step up and present a selection of unique "one-off" neighborhood restaurnts as a alternative to the glitz and glamour of the Bell-Square choices. Hopefully Old Bellevue on Main Street will show itself capable of providing this, there already are a few options here that could easily provide some stand out opportunities.

-Robert

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For years and years, Bellevue has been a restaurant wasteland. Good restaurants would come in, stay for a while, and then close up shop due to lack of business. There were a few noteable exceptions, but they survived mostly on a loyal customer base instead of a real awareness that Bellevue had good restaurants.

I would often tell restauranteurs who were thinking of opening up in Bellevue that they should instead wait for a few "deep pocket" chains to set up shop and establish downtown as being a destination point for restaurant "browsing".

While we might eschew chain joints such as the Cheesecake Factory, the appearance of such in the center of town has re-invigorated the awareness of the fact that there "is" a downtown in Bellevue. Ok, so it's mucked up traffic quite a bit, but there's always a cost.

The next stage, is for an area of town to step up and present a selection of unique "one-off" neighborhood restaurnts as a alternative to the glitz and glamour of the Bell-Square choices. Hopefully Old Bellevue on Main Street will show itself capable of providing this, there already are a few options here that could easily provide some stand out opportunities.

-Robert

I was in Bellevue last Tuesday evening meeting an old friend for drinks at Rock Bottom and then were to head out for dinner. As we all know nothing but chains, but these chains on a Tuesday night all had a 45-55 min wait for dinner at 7:00. I was astonished what I beleive the new Lincoln Tower is already doing for these chain restaurants on the corner of Bell Square and Lincoln Tower. Not only the new like McCormick & Schmicks, but the old like Z'Tejas all jam packed. If some little luxury, original boutique restaurants could get in near this mess I think it would be a hit. What once use to be a sleepy go straight home after work town, seems to be changing BIG.

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The little Mexican restaurant next door to those places is pretty good too.

La Cocina del Puerco, yeah, I've always liked that place. It was one of the first places around that served anything remotely like authentic Mexican food.

Most women don't seem to know how much flour to use so it gets so thick you have to chop it off the plate with a knife and it tastes like wallpaper paste....Just why cream sauce is bitched up so often is an all-time mytery to me, because it's so easy to make and can be used as the basis for such a variety of really delicious food.

- Victor Bergeron, Trader Vic's Book of Food & Drink, 1946

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OK, so maybe I'm behind, but I don't recall, (nor did a search turn up) any mention of either of these places.

Now, as Seattleites we all know, quite smugly I might add,  :raz:  that the eastside is a culinary wasteland for the most part, with a few bright stars here and there, and WAY TOO MANY chain restaurants and fast food joints. I'd like to announce that today I found not one, but two exceptions to this rule in old downtown Bellevue. 

First is Zizo Market, a little Mediterrean/Middle Eastern market/deli on old Main. Wow, lots of fabulous ingredients here, ala PFI. AND they have a deli, offering sandwiches (including Lamb Shwarma) they have salads, tabouli, hummus, babaganouche, 2 kinds of mortadella, several kinds of pita. Tons of olives, lots of halal meats, all kinds of cheeses, lots of canned goods and unique things (a slab of apricot paste?) sour cherry preserves, all kinds of peppers. Wowie! It's high on my return list. Unfortunately, I didn't get anything because it was in between bkfast and lunch but I'll return to do some sampling and try a sandwich or two.

Coffee was on my agenda so my next stop was just down the street at a place called Belle Pastry. Lots of beautiful pastries, all drool-worthy, they also make the refined style of baguette (as opposed to the rustic style) and I just had a sandwich made with it tonight and it's a winner. They also have chouquettes  :wub:  those fabulous little puffs of pate à choux sprinkled with rock sugar. Now we don't have to travel south 3 hours to Saint Honoré to get them!!

This is probably my favorite area (besides Bridle Trails State Park, of course) of the eastside. It actually has a feeling of history and charm. Go visit these places and keep them in business  :smile:

Zizo Market

10204 Main St

425.646.9496

Belle Pastry

10246 Main St

425.289.0015

I was in Bellevue yesterday and stopped in at Belle Pastry. It was lovely. All the desserts and treats looked perfect and I wanted to try them all. We opted for a plain croissant, a raspberry and cream cheese danish and a ham and cheese croissant and took a baguette home with us. Everything was yummy and while I don't get to the eastside very often I will make a point to stop back in.

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Went with a couple of friends to Zizo for lunch on Thursday. Wow! I work on the eastside and as we've all discussed here before, it's nice to find a gem to break up the monotony of the culinary wasteland. We all ordered sandwiches -- my friends both ordered lamb shawarma and I ordered falafel, with some side dishes of tahini salad, hummus, and baba ghanoush. I wish the hummus and baba ghanoush had come with more pita, but the sandwiches were perfect. Tarek, the proprietor, was friendly and welcoming and it was a pleasure to like his place so much.

I'll definitely be going back! Thanks for the recommendation -- I wouldn't have found it otherwise.

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