While our polite friends to the North are only about 100 miles away from Seattle, for too long Canada's delicious poutine seemed far away and exotic, something you indulged in only on vacation. But now, lucky for us, Seattle restaurants are joining the poutine gravy train and adding it to their menus all across our great city.
Made with crispy fries, cheese curds and brown gravy, this decadent dish was born in rural Quebec in the 1950s. Sure, it sounds simple: But getting it right takes a lot of little details. The fries need to be crisp enough to stand up to the dollop of gravy.The cheese curds should be bite-sized and retain their trademark squeak. And the gravy needs to have just enough meaty tang to make it stand out, but not so much that all you’re tasting and eating is a bunch of goop.
Here are some of the best spots for polishing off a plate of poutine in the Emerald City.
The Angry Beaver. It’s no surprise that there’s some great poutine at The Angry Beaver, Seattle’s only Canadian-themed bar. Located in the Greenwood neighborhood, it’s the perfect place to eat poutine and watch hockey, eh? The Angry Beaver makes homemade hand-cut fries and gravy; and they take their poutine so seriously you can order a flight of it, with your choice of beef, curry, mushroom or turkey gravy. And, of course, you have to wash it all down with a Caesar, Canada’s national cocktail made with vodka, Clamato juice, Worcestershire, celery salt and Tabasco.
Young American Ale House. This Ballard gastropub uses both Beecher's cheese curds (you'll start to notice a trend here) and gruyere cheese in it's delicious version of poutine. There's then mushroom gravy slathered over french fries fried in beef fat. Everything is organic and you can even request a vegetarian version if you'd like. This restaurant from James Beard Award-winning chef Maria Hines keeps David Bowie songs stuck in your head while filling your tummy fully of gravy. What could be better?
Burgundian. Named after patrons of the arts in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, Burgundian offers several decadent dishes that are definitely synonymous with “a taste for the good life.” The poutine at Burgundian is absolute perfection. Made with crispy frites, oxtail gravy, cheese curds and herbs, it’s one of the best spots for the classic Quebec dish. Watch their brunch menu because sometimes they surprise guests with breakfast poutine made with frites, sausage gravy, cheddar cheese curds and sunny-up eggs!
The Gerald. The Gerald offers one of the best deals around if you’re looking to slurp down some poutine after work. Their generous platter of poutine is only four bucks during happy hour and it features Beecher’s cheese curds!
The 5-Point Cafe. With the slogan, “Alcoholics serving alcoholics since 1929,” you know you’re not going to get fussy food at this famous Seattle dive bar. Nothing soaks up a few too many vodka sodas like a big platter of poutine, so you won’t be disappointed by the huuuuuuge (½ pound) serving of poutine with delicious brown gravy you get at the 5-Point. (Not that I would have any personal experience with this. Nope. Never.)
Local 360. If you’re going for a slightly classier poutine experience, try the plate at Local 360. Made with smoked brisket gravy, Beecher’s cheese curds, and pickled peppers, this poutine is absolutely divine. I pair it with a glass of prosecco and forget that calories even exist.
Smith. What’s better than a big plate of poutine on a rainy Saturday afternoon? A big plate of poutine piled high with smoked brisket, that’s what! This Capitol Hill favorite offers a classic version of poutine loaded with extra meat. Wear your stretchy pants, this one is a doozy.