I was overdue for a lunch meet up with a friend who lives in West Seattle.
Not many people know this, but I love West Seattle. Specifically the Junction, because there are so many amazing restaurants and shops crammed into a highly walkable area. And it might also be because that’s where Bakery Nouveau is, but that’s a topic for a whole different blog (amazing almond croissants, go there now!).
We like to get together and catch up at least monthly, and I tend to go visit her neck of the woods because, well, she lives near the Junction and that is a really cool neck of the woods. I had a craving for sushi, but the day of our lunch dawned cool and drizzly, so my craving for raw fish went out the window. You can guess what took its place: comfort food. OH YEAH. That means mac and cheese, baby.
West 5’s mac and cheese has been on my “to-do” list for quite some time. Here’s a recent article that includes it in their “Best Mac & Cheese in Seattle”, but truly, there are many such articles online – and West 5 seems to be included in most of the Seattle best-of’s for mac and cheese that have been written. So, it was definitely one of those spots that I wanted to try.
Decision made, my friend and I entered West 5 and were greeted by the most effusive, lovely server I have come across in a while. He seated us and grabbed menus, and we took our time deciding what to order (other than the mac and cheese, of course). To help us with our decision, we each ordered a glass of Prosecco.
We went with the Astral Mac’N’Cheese and the homemade Sloppy Joes. Because both pair perfectly with Prosecco, right? Right.
Our server giggled a bit with us at the combination and headed off to put in our order. Several minutes later, our meals arrived.
And they both looked scrumptious.
The mac and cheese – sloppy joes combination took us both back to childhood in an instant. But upon tasting, both were nicely refined and well-suited for our adult palates. The sloppy joes were wonderful, but in seeing the homemade goodness and the bits of green pepper in the mix, I couldn’t help but think of Eddie Murphy’s shtick about McDonalds versus a homemade house burger.
Not that the green pepper bits took away from the sloppy joes at all – it was really, really good.
Now to the main event: the mac and cheese. The chef uses radiatore pasta and five cheeses: Cheddar, Swiss, Cotija, Parmesan, and cream cheese. With that combination in the mix, how can you possibly go wrong? Well, you can’t. Look at that gooey bite – you want some, don’t you?
And it was goooooood. The gooey luscious cheeses paired with a crunchy crumb topping were at odds with each other in the best possible way. The radiatore pasta was perfect for catching and trapping the cheese sauce; you got a nice pasta to sauce ratio in every bite.
And you know what? Prosecco does pair nicely with sloppy joes and mac & cheese.
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