May 28th, 2010

Sarah Goes To Poppy (Capitol Hill).

Last Thursday we enjoyed dinner at Poppy with a bottle of 1976 Huet Clos du Bourg Moelleux. Corkage is $20, which seems to be the norm these days. This is one of the more unique restaurants in Seattle; which presents Jerry Traunfeld's interpretation of Indian thali. The menu showcases his expansive knowledge of herbs and spices. The moderately sized, but full herb garden in the restaurant's backyard attests to the depth of flavors literally at the chef's doorstep.

We shared two starters, ordered two thalis, and dessert. Throughout the evening a balancing act of texture and flavor were presented. The starters, eggplant fries and potato pakors, were both intensely flavorful. The eggplant was lightly salted and tossed in honey. The pakoras redolent with cumin and tumeric disappeared too quickly. The texture of both was crisp and creamy. The thalis arrive complete with naan: one King salmon, one Tandoori lamb. Some of the items overlapped such as the rhubarb pickle. It was a nice touch and acted as a palate cleanser in a way.

This is a fun place that buzzes with energy and creativity. The varied, but set menus may bother some who prefer to have more control over their dining experience. We brought the bottle of Huet with us as a particular treat. It paired well with dinner, although the sweetness became a bit filling towards the end of the meal. The wine list is reasonable and creative.

1976 Huet Clos du Bourg Moelleux: The wines from Huet have a history of longevity. This wine was closed down when first opened with air and time it proved to be full of life still. The chill aided by the wine’s natural acidity tempered its sweetness. Later in the evening the wine’s nose and palate had become more multifaceted with flavors of apricot, caramel, rye, bruised yellow apple, tangerine, and lanolin.