Life is beautiful in Seattle, WA. And all the more so when dining in Belltown at La Vita E Bella.
We ate the BEST Italian food EVER this evening. And this is to compare with Italian dining in NY and Northern NJ. So many Italians immigrated to the US in the last century that when I was a kid, I wasn't alone being a first generation American. But I digress.
As the story goes…It was a very busy day. We all went to Seattle to visit the Seattle Aquarium. I know my last post raved about all you can do in Bellingham, but my kids NEED to experience CITY so they are not afraid of it. I think all the adventures are growing on them. They keep asking for more…
The Aquarium was great! We all had different favorites: river otters, jellyfish, harbor seals. My favorite was Buster the octopus. I wanted to see who took Omar's place. Omar was the septopus from Bellingham (missing an arm). When he got too big for the aquarium at The Marine Life Center, he shipped out to Seattle. The guides at the Seattle Aquarium told me he had a good life there. They also taught exhibit viewers how to tell if an octopus is male or female. The end of all the arms on a female octopus will be the same, but on a male, one arm (3rd from the right?) will not have suction cups. There you have it. PS The Aquarium Cafe has good food.
We ended our visit in time for dinner in Seattle (who wants to drive in the traffic?). Tom knew the exact place to go. No touristy pier restaurants for us! Oh, no! Please excuse me, but when you've been on your feet walking through exhibits for a few hours with a few kids, immediate gratification in the food department is in order. But, I gave way. It's a good thing, too, because the evening turned out to be the all time BEST family meal ever shared. We took a poll.
La Vita E Bella is an Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria in Belltown (a few blocks from the Aquarium). Roberto was THE man of the night. His manners and patience were of the utmost. As was his NY way of standing proud. Tom and I took bets – what borough? As it turns out, the question should have been – what exit? Another boy from Long Island (like Tom). But then it got interesting. They grew up on Long Island AND they went to the same HS. Too much for me at this point. THEN, another couple came in to dine (regulars) and this man ALSO went to the same high school. You know what it's like when they all have something like that in common? Everyone's a bud talking out loud about shared places and peoples. The coincidences were beyond – there were more, but I want to tell about the AMAZING meal we ate.
Right off Roberto knew to feed the children first. Personal size margherita pizza for all. Out came warm crusty bread, ice clinked while water poured into tall glasses. A drink for the adults? YES! Red for him because he was eating the most delicious lasagna and white for me because the halibut had come into the kitchen just 4 minutes ago. The serving of fish was enough for the next day, broiled with baby asparagus and latkes. It was excellent. All diners were well fed. But, could we see the dessert menu? Of course!
We had lemon sorbets (frozen in their fruit shells), tartufo (frozen truffle with zabaglione cream center covered w/chocolate gelato, carmelized hazelnuts and cocoa powder), torta fruiti di bosco (layers of short pastry filled with Chantilly cream and a berry assortment) and tiramisu (vanilla sponge layer w/coffee and cognac soaked lady fingers, marscapone cream filling, espresso cream dusted w/cocoa powder). Excellent!
La Vita E Bella 2411 2nd Ave Seattle WA 206-441-5322
We were entertained by the soft melody of a grandpa's accordian. He now displays a caricature of himself on his tip glass courtesy of my daughter. She captured his hat, eyeglasses, curly mustache and suit perfectly. You should have seen his smile stretch from ear to ear.