Cicchetti on Eastlake, Seattle. At first it would appear really small by the standards of a restaurant, but I loved it, feeling like a guest in someone's house. It was so social, and I didn't feel like I was being served. But rather as if I was part of a process, of tasting and sharing. The seating allowed us to sit at the bar right in front of the chefs and we watched them cook, and chat. A feeling of collaboration. Like they had something to show us, and share their talents with us. Each dish was unique and nothing felt mass-produced. Each plate they adjusted and talked about, 'add a little paprika' I heard the one chef say to the other. The freedom to asses each plate with individual touch was refreshing. Like a showcase piece and we as the audience were the enjoyers and the tasters. I felt our reactions were part and parcel to the feedback the chefs were looking for. A very interactive process.
But on top of this integral eating experience, it was super easy to stay on top of paleo choices at this restaurant. The starters were perfectly without grains, legumes or dairy. Almonds, raisins and dates, or beets and fennel and olives in red peppers. Salmon on butternut pieces... and the portion sizes were perfect. Dessert was even coconut ice-cream. We walked out with a dining experience while continuing on our paleo lifestyle. Setting us up for good sleep which will follow with good training in the morning.