First Look: Betty
Wednesday evening M2 and I checked out Betty, Crow’s little sister and the latest new restaurant on Queen Anne Hill. Although Betty has only been open about 2 weeks it seems to already be quite popular with local neighborhood residents. Our friendly bartender greeted several "regulars" as we tried a couple of cocktails and shared a few plates.
My cocktail for the evening was the "Counterbalance", a nice blend of mostly Ruby Red Absolut and lime juice. If you are not aware the use of a counterbalance was the way the city’s first trolley cars to traverse Queen Anne were kept under control, ensuring that they didn’t plummet down the steep hill. The counterbalance would be put in motion to counteract the force of gravity on the weight of the cars. (Side note: Although for those of us from Seattle, Queen Anne is just a very steep hill, if you lived in Cincinnati you might think of it as "Mt Queen Anne". The first time I visited Cincinnati everyone there told me I must see Mt. Adams and so I did. It’s just over 800 feet above sea level; Cincinnati is at nearly 700 feet so the total increase in elevation is about 150 feet. Queen Anne sits at 450+ feet above sea level and Seattle is considered to be "at sea level". That all means that one of our hills is about three times as tall as Cincinnati’s mountain!) But back to Betty…
Betty has a fairly small menu – which may be partially due to the age of the place – but what is on the menu sounds great. M2 and I decided to try a few things to get a good sense of what they could do. We started with a basic meat platter (charcuterie) and a side of frites – how can you go to a place that offers them and not try them?
The charcuterie was very nice, nothing super special but the sort of thing you’d want if you were looking for a lighter bit to go with a nice glass of wine. The frites were wonderful! Thin cut, crispy on the outside and tender on the inside – perfect! They asked if we wanted ketchup and we accepted but I will tell you the fries were so good on their own that I didn’t want anything mucking them up!
The third thing we ordered, Chicken Ballotine, was completely new to me but M2 was very excited to see it on the menu as she was planning on making it for a party this weekend but had never actually seen it. I am so glad that we tried it! Basically it’s a chicken leg with thigh attached that has been de-boned but skin left on and then it’s stuffed – in this case with lovely mushrooms. And Betty’s version was served on a bed of white beans and chunks of spring asparagus in a light broth. It was very good!
Compared to Crow the vibe here is much more laid back and neighborhood-y. Crow is such a large, almost industrial space while Betty is much more intimate. Betty maintains the great open kitchen and eating bar that Crow has but the bar bar at Betty is much more pleasant than the one at Crow. If I lived on Queen Anne I’d stop in again soon. And even though I don’t, I’m sure I will be back again in the near future. I think Crow’s little sister will give her a run for the money.
1507 Queen Anne Aveune N