[Photos: S. Pratt]
As the leaves start to fall, The Stranger catches up with Rachel Mashall of Rachel's Ginger Beer to see what she's got brewing for autumn and to taste-test their way through pretty much the entire menu. Why is RGB so damn good? Says Marshall, "It's 'cause everyone sucks with ginger. People overprocess it so much that it tastes bitter and too sharp. It's a common mistake."
Currently, Marshall is working some magic with seasonal flavors like cranberry, quince and pear cardamom. One flavor you wont' see: pumpkin. "I fucking hate pumpkin," she says. Okay, then.
This week, it's Seattle Magazine's turn to take a spin around Tanakasan (Providence Cicero of The Seattle Times liked it in her review last week). Allison Scheff finds her visits to the Assembly Hall restaurant a little irritating, as the servers didn't always point her in the right menu direction:
I twice ordered curried lamb dumplings ($6 at lunch, $13 at dinner) based on their advice, only to find the dumplings' skins tough and greasy. And the servers' fawning over the duck sausages in soft, pillowy "pinch buns" ($6 at lunch, $12 at dinner) is also overselling; they're tasty, but they could use a little something.
What she loved: the smoked black cod served over rice "with an impossibly delicious avocado hollandaise sauce and a perfect fried egg," the Osaka pancake, "a particularly addictive version of okonomiyaki," and "a very inspired radish and pea vine salad in mustard vinaigrette." Kinks aside, she finds Tanakasan quite fun and refreshingly devoid of pretension.
· Rachel's Ginger Beer [Official Site]
· Rachel's Ginger Beer Forever [The Stranger]
· Tanakasan [Official Site]
· Review: Tom Douglas' Tanakasan [Seattle Mag]
· All Week in Reviews [~ESEA~]