Edmonds Restaurant News: Lunch arrives at 190 Sunset, Korean beef soup satisfies on Hwy 99

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Halibut and chips at 190 Sunset.

Restaurant 190 Sunset now serves lunch from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday. Restaurant News stopped by to taste items from the diverse new menu. Fresh-caught halibut and chips, New York-style pastrami on rye, a French dip sandwich and a variety of new soups and summer salads made it hard to choose. I noted that favorite items from 190 Sunset’s dinner menu — grilled wild Alaskan salmon and fresh pan-roasted halibut and 190’s famous crab cakes — are available in lunch portions.

Enjoy lunch in the sun. With the nice weather upon us, Restaurant News and her lunch companion opted to enjoy our lunch selections on the substantial deck.

One thing’s for certain: The crew at 190 Sunset is aims to please, and not just with their delicious food. Their level of customer service is noteworthy. I watched as manager James Coryer maneuvered a 10-foot tall umbrella to accommodate a diner’s desire for more shade. Graceful steps around several tables and settings, without disturbing so much as a napkin, he made sure that both of her shoulders were protected from the rays of the sun before he ended his endeavor. That is going the extra mile and then some.

The 190 Sunset lunch menu features house-made items. New York-Style Pastrami on Rye, or the Reuben? I didn’t hesitate, ordered that half pound of pastrami, with the extra Swiss cheese. Owner Tom Budinick stopped by the table to chat a bit. One of the emphases Tom made was his commitment to local seafood, via his grandfather. A photo dated around 1910, of Grandpa Martin Budinick in the Rainer Fish Market, is displayed with pride on the wall at the hostess stand.

“Today’s halibut and chips the fish was caught at 4 a.m.,” a tag on the fish delivered to the back door so states. Tom made a point — 190 Sunset’s seafood comes from “small co-op fisheries, their boats are small, only 60 footers.”

Seared Ahi salad

Seared Ahi tuna salad was a meal-sized offering featured light Asian-style sesame dressing, over a mixture of crispy field greens. Tuna was tender pink inside a super crisp sesame crust, thin sliced and spread across the greens. Hubby was awarded the crisp wonton strips on his portion of the salad. “Carbs,” I said.

In turn I swiped the bacon crumbled atop his Classic Wedge salad. Hubby is a non-meat eater. He raved about the iceberg, anointed with creamy blue cheese dressing, chunks of bleu and thin ribbons of red onion, topped off with house-made garlic croutons. “This is classic, and absolutely delicious.”

Tomato basil soup

Tomato basil soup had great texture along with the cream base, and the basil accents each spoonful.

The pastrami was lean, almost too lean and I let it sit just a bit as I took pictures and munched salad. The warm sunshine started to dry the exposed meat, but the cayenne and white pepper-spiked mayo, presented as a dip for the fries, worked magic to restore moisture to the edges. Yeah, my hubby got the skinny cut fries, cause if I’d have indulged…well… not skinny would describe my derrière.

Pastrami with skinny cut fries.

Turns out the house pastrami is not currently made on premise. Both corned beef and pastrami are sourced from the iconic Market House Meats, the brining mecca and corned beef meat market on the corner of Minor and Howell, in Seattle. “We wanted the best,” Tom says. It is their goal to get production in house, but not until they can match the quality produced by corned beef experts who’ve been at it for more than six decades, he added.

Other items called out as house made are the breads. I needed to know more… I had a delightful visit with Jessica Titus, one of the two bakers on staff.

“I have always enjoyed baking, even as a kid,” Jessica said, adding she was the one who arrived with fresh baked cookies, brownies and other yummy baked goods at school parties. She and her mom attended cake decorating classes and her pastry presentations at school leaped to a new level. Jessica learned on the job, trained at Snoqualmie Casino for many years before 190 Sunset invited her to join their team.

Buttermilk biscuits — her version of the classic breakfast buns — are fabulous. Glad it was lunchtime, not breakfast, they’re a huge temptation when one is on the “low-carb” regime. I asked, “what is your secret?”

“Buttermilk, butter, and lots of love,” she smiled and went on to regale me with coming attractions. “Chocolate chip cookies and S ‘mores dessert items are in the works,” she said.

I asked about the rye bread. “Still playing with recipes and ingredients,” She confessed the rye is one of the few breads not made on premise just now. Her favorite bread to make is the baguette.

Jessica is a great example of the dedication of team members at 190 Sunset. She lives in Puyallup. Her day starts at 5 a.m. and she is done after lunch starts service. “I beat traffic both ways.” She says this with a smile too.

Crème Brûlée

After hearing about the dessert items from the baker, who couldn’t resist a peek at the Dessert Menu? Research ensued… Crème Brûlée or Caramel Crème Brûlée? My hubby raised his eyebrows- “Carbs?”

“Hey, I only ate a bit of the rye bread…saved up for dessert,” I replied. Oh, was it worth the sacrifice. There was tawny-colored caramel custard under that crust of burnt sugar. Every bite filled my mouth with velvet-textured sweet cream and crisp crunches.

Service is not speedy, but when sun fills the deck and blue skies sparkle, one doesn’t mind that lunch at 190 Sunset isn’t a quick bite and back to the office. Good food commands attention. I encourage all to take the time to enjoy, and savor every well-crafted bite.

Delicious changes at Traditional Korean Beef Soup

The change in ownership at a local establishment last summer had escaped my notice, but how happy I am to have discovered the Traditional Korean Beef Soup– 22929 Highway 99, G-1, in Edmonds.

We were greeted by Bonnie Lee as soon as we walked in. Her family now operates this restaurant and she wanted to be sure we had a great experience. Hot tea was at the table before menus were opened. Tea was the traditional barley and corn, slightly sweet and refreshing. Refills came without even asking.

Beef soup

Bonnie explained how to enjoy a traditional soup which is their specialty — Sullungtang, or ox bone soup. I chose flank steak and on Bonnie’s advice I opted for the clear rice threads — aka glass noodles — as opposed to the flour noodles. She schooled us on the process of seasoning the soup. She indicated a large dish of fresh salt, a hot sauce, and a generous bowl of chopped green onions. “Many people just order the soup and don’t understand seasoning at the last minute is what makes the flavor really come out.” Her tutelage turned the rich creamy broth into something special.

Bonnie makes homemade dumplings every day. She introduced her mom who gave me a big hug. Mom taught her how to make handmade dumplings. The filling is tofu, pork and lots of greens. Bonnie brought her ingredients to a nearby table so I could photograph the process.

Bonnie says she makes about 200 to 250 daily, for a total of between 1,500 and 2,000 dumplings every week. “And we’re a bone broth house, “she says with a smile, “yet we’re known for our dumplings.”

Korean appetizers

Appetizers were limited in variety, but came in generous portions. Sprouts were dressed with a sesame oil garlic and green onion. Kimchi was crisp and delicious. I’m fine with fewer appetizers when the ones presented are excellent.

Rice accompanied our dishes — a blend of brown, black and Jasmine. No extra charge for rice.

Bibimbap

My husband chose Bibimbap and his assortment of vegetables and rice in the stone pot were topped with not one but two egg yolks. Delighted with the portion size, he was soon full between sips of my soup broth and the appetizer bowls, which never seemed to empty.

Grilled mackerel

Mackerel arrived to the table grilled perfectly. Crispy on the outside, meat moist and tender next to the bone, and a healthy treat too, packed with omega-3 fatty acids.

Happy to find another great Korean restaurant in our local culinary community.

North China in the QFC shopping center is closed. A sign in the window says a new Thai place, called Amata Thai Cuisine, is “coming soon.”

Core Hero introduces sea asparagus at Edmonds Market

Cooked sea asparagus

Sea asparagus, a small annual herb, is also known as pickle weed, samphire greens, sea beans, glasswort and sea fennel.

If you haven’t tried sea asparagus, here’s your chance to taste the unusual plant that’s growing in popularity. It’s in season for about six weeks and is sold at the Core Hero Hard Cider booth at the Edmonds Farmers Market. Recipes, market dates and hard cider store locations are available at the booth and at CoreHeroHardCider.com. Core Hero Hard Cider harvests wild sea asparagus from Lopez Island where apples are grown for the handcrafted cider made in Edmonds.

Sea asparagus is salty and slightly bitter when raw. Steve recommends you soak it in water for about one hour to reduce the saltiness. After soaking, blanch in boiling water for one to two minutes and immediately submerge in ice water to stop the cooking and prevent discoloration. Sauté with reduced hard cider or with garlic and butter, and enjoy.

Sea asparagus with black cod.

My favorite recipe uses sea asparagus as the green accent under seared black cod. Here is the link. Also a great addition to the bowl when enjoying poke.

More market dining reviews coming soon.

Celebrate Scratch with a toast

Scratch Distillery marks their 2nd anniversary on July 10. Celebration weekend begins on Thursday, July 6 with new offerings daily until the culmination celebration on their true two-year anniversary — Monday, July 10, 2017.

Hope everyone celebrates the upcoming holiday with good food and friends, but above all… safely. Have a Happy 4th!

— By Kathy Passage

A specialty gourmet food broker for over 30 years, Kathy Passage has in-depth knowledge on food and the special qualities of ingredients used in the exquisite products she helped bring to market. Kathy brings this unique perspective from the “other side of the plate” to writing about the food and restaurant scene in Edmonds.

2 Replies to “Edmonds Restaurant News: Lunch arrives at 190 Sunset, Korean beef soup satisfies on Hwy 99”

  1. Fabulous lunch at 190 Sunset. My sister and I ate lunch there on Wed. And it was so good we went back on Thur. The deck was an added bonus

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