Eat. Boston. Winter Squash Soup.

Sel de la Terre:  Native Squash Soup

Have you ever set out to eat your way across a city, focusing on a single seasonal dish?

Well, I didn’t intend to go on a winter squash soup kick while in Boston in October, but one thing led to another, as the saying goes, and there I was at Sorellina on our last night in Boston eating my 5th winter squash soup.

And here’s the thing. I could have continued this lovely madness for another week at least. It is highly instructive to see how top notch culinary artists across a major culinary mecca treat the same basic core ingredients and menu item, in this case, winter squash and a handful of flavor complements crafted into a smooth and silky soup.

Metrovino’s Parmesan Pound Cake

Metrovino's Parmesan Pound Cake, My Version

Nearly a year ago, at the newly opened Metrovino restaurant in Portland, Oregon’s Pearl district, I spied a dessert on the menu that sounded so implausible that I was honestly expecting NOT to like it. I mean seriously, parmesan cheese in a pound cake? I had never heard of, much less tasted, such a combination–even though I have a library full of dessert cookbooks and am always on the lookout for creative, out of the ordinary flavor combinations.

Eat. West Seattle. West 5. Astral Mac & Cheese.

West 5 Mac & Cheese

This just in folks. In our continuing search for the very best Macaroni and Cheese that Northwest (and beyond) restaurants and cafes have to offer, we have another winner! Astral Mac & Cheese, from the West Seattle blast-from-the-past diner, West 5, easily sailed into the upcoming Quintessential Mac & Cheese Roundup 2009.