Seattle Restaurant: South Lake Union’s Re:public

re:public

re:public

re:public

re:public

I went to re:public restaurant and bar for lunch today with a group of friends to celebrate the Christmas Season.  Re:public is in South Lake Union on Westlake near the cross street of Republican.  It is located in a cool old brick building that has probably seen a 100 year of changes in the Lake Union neighborhood.  The inside of the Seattle restaurant shows off the brick and the beams of the old building.  The restaurant has a large bar and you could tell that place probably is packed at Happy Hour with all the people that work around there.  I asked my friends and they confirmed it.

The menu looked good.  Not too many items to pick from, which I like when the options are good.  The top of the menu had 3 or 4 salads to pick from, the middle of the menu had about 5 sandwiches, and the bottom of the menu had about 4 items for entrees.  I concentrated on the middle of re:public’s menu where they featured a Kobe burger, Kobe bacon burger, Reuben sandwich, crab melt, and I think a tuna salad.  They all looked good; and I was having trouble deciding between the bacon burger, Reuben, or crab melt.  I went for the crab melt on the condition that my wife ordered the Kobe bacon burger, so I could try it.  Then we started to order and after going around the table, 5 Kobe bacon burgers were ordered and one crab melt.

The crab melt was very good.  I have talked about my love of cheese before, but I have to admit, I often shy away from crab melts because, dare I say it, a lot of times they have too much cheese on them when I order them in restaurants in Seattle.  This crab melt was perfect: it was light on the cheese and I could taste the crab (which often gets drowned out).  It was served on grilled sourdough, and it looks like it was made in a Panini maker.  I order the side salad which was light, but good.

I was not impressed with the Kobe bacon burger.  The burgers came on those buttery type rolls, which looked good but the buns dwarfed the meat.  It seems they make their own patties at the Seattle restaurant, since the burgers were all shapes and sizes, but all on the small side.  The restaurant also overcooked nearly every burger – the largest one had a sliver of pink in the very middle.  The cheese was very light (unlike on my crab melt, I think this is a big mistake to go light with the cheese on a burger).  Finally, they came with two strips of bacon.  Although there was ketchup on the side, there was nothing else to add (tomato slice, lettuce, mustard, etc).  I do not know if that stuff was need or not, but just an observation.  Really the most disappointing thing about the burgers was their size and that they were overcooked.  I did not hear the waitress ask how to cook them, but maybe you could order the burgers medium rare and at least that issue would be solved.

I will say the burgers came with fries, and the fries were pretty good: salted with sea salt, cut thicker than say any fast food restaurant in Seattle, but not too thick.  And you could see the potato skin on the ends.  They kind of reminded me of Seattle’s famous Dick’s Drive-In fries but thicker.

It was my first time I was at re:public, since I do not make it down to South Lake Union for lunch very often, so I hate to judge the burgers so critically with one visit.  I guess all I am saying, is the Kobe bacon burger looks real tempting (5 out of 6 ordered it), make sure you order it the way you like it cooked and do not go with an empty stomach.

Bacon Explosion

Ok, this is not about a Seattle restaurant, but I just can’t help myself.  I have to talk about the Bacon Explosion.  Growing up there are two foods that have always been close to my heart: bacon and cheese.  (Heart please forgive me – I can feel my arteries harden as I utter these words).  You put bacon or cheese on anything and the chances are my mouth will water as if Pavlov has just rang his bell.  My obsession with bacon and cheese, I thought while not completely unique, were well kind of unique.  Maybe I was a misguided youth, maybe I was too busy eating cheese and bacon to think about it, but obviously, I was completely wrong.  Now a days there is Bacon Salt, Baconnaise, Bacon Vodka, and every kind of bacon burger you could think of at every fast restaurant from Seattle to Timbukto.

My love of bacon is no secret so a while back my brother in law sent me the recipe to Bacon Explosion.  I am sure many of you have come across this recipe through email or through legend.  But even with my love of bacon and cheese and my pure delight that such a recipe existed, I look at the link and then deleted the email thinking in the back of my head some day I will Google it and make it, but I was in no big hurry.  The day had yet to come……but then, I went to my friend’s house to watch football and something was cooking on the porch.  I was not really hungry, so I paid little attention until this arrived at the table:

Bacon Explosion

Bacon Explosion

Oh, the excitement.  Bacon crumbles, rolled in Italian sausage meat, wrapped in more bacon.  Next to it was barbecue sauce, but surely so much flavor did not need any such thing.  (The bell in my head had been rung; I was salivating).  The Bacon Explosion was sliced (cut like a yule log) and I tried a slice.  Now my expectations were through the roof, so we must realize that before I say my next words: I was a little disappointed.  It was good but it was not great, but that did not stop me from my second slice.   This time, I drizzled some barbecue sauce on it, and that was much better.  I definitely recommend the barbecue sauce.  And I did not stop there, I had a least two more slices (more came out – one with jalapenos diced in the middle) and of course I ate some bacon crumbles that were left on the cutting board.

It was a good meal, and I would recommend everyone to try it, and I hope a Seattle restaurant starts serving it (if they have not already).

One of these days I will make it, and when I do, I will add plenty of CHEESE!  How could that not be heaven on earth?