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Lunch at Bandoleone



 Lately it seems I haven’t been eating anything nor doing much that’s been worthy to write about.  I’ve been having a wonderful time – I’m just not sure you wanted to really hear about it!  For instance, a typical day has been something like:  wander around the yard eating strawberries while watering and pulling a few weeds; come inside and get so involved in some project that it’s suddenly mid-afternoon and I’m starving so I pull together something basic like cheese and crackers or slices of bread; since I ate "lunch" so late I’m not really hungry at dinner time and so I just have a bowl of cereal.  :-)  Not exactly inspired eating! 

Yesterday I suddenly decided I needed to shake-up my life. I think this is partially brought on by the impending change in my semi-retirement/chosen unemployment.  Yes, I’m finally going to be spending more formal time working.  I’ve done a few small projects over the last several months but next week I start a bit longer (though still fairly short) term project and it looks like I may have another one starting in mid-July.  Between the two I’ll have a bit more than full time hours.  Although I’ll still be able to schedule my own time and be working from home quite often I’m going to miss the total flexibility I’ve had for so long. 

But back to yesterday… I called R and we arranged to meet at Bandoleone for lunch at 1:30. Quite some time ago Bandoleone moved to Fremont from Eastlake.  I’ve only been to this new location one other time and so I was looking forward to getting back.  Yesterday was really beautiful so I was hoping that they’d be seating in the outdoor area in front. 

I parked about a mile away so I could get in a little walk before and after lunch.  I walked along the canal enjoying the little breeze, the passing marine traffic and the general funkiness of Fremont.  On Saturday and Sunday this same area will be filled with booths of all sorts for the Fremont Street Fair and on Saturday it will be part of the staging area for the Solstice Parade

The path is part of the Burke-Gilman Trail that links with many other trails throughout the region.  You can ride from the Puget Sound all the way out to the Woodinville wineries and beyond.  Something I’ve never been inclined to do – I can imagine getting out there but then dreading the ride back! 

Over the years the character of Fremont has changed slightly.  In fact R and I had a little debate over this yesterday.  Fremont has always been bohemian and considered itself a bit out there.  Several years ago when Adobe built in the area everyone was so worried about the disaster this spelled for funky Fremont. (Adobe has been part of the Seattle scene since purchasing a local company, Aldus, in 1996. ) It would be …. gentrified! But that really hasn’t happened.  Yes, many of the old rickety warehouses are gone, replaced with new buildings but most of the new buildings either were built with the canal and access to it in mind and/or have their own funky character.  And for the most part the shops, restaurants and people of Fremont are still unique.  It’s a much more walker friendly place these days.  And while walking you can see the Troll, the statue of Lenin, the Rocket, the topiary dinosaurs that used to live at Seattle Center and all manner of other things that define Fremont

I guess I’m meandering in this post about as much as I did on my stroll!  To get to the heart of the matter, I arrived at Bandoleone and was disappointed to find they were not seating outside, but that was probably just as well since the wind had picked up a bit.  R arrived and we placed our orders.  I started with a Mojito and she had a glass of sangria.  We also placed orders for tortas (sandwiches) – she ordered the Cubano and I decided to try the San Salvador.  I was originally going to have salad on the side but at the last moment changed to chips and salsa. 

Our orders arrived and looked beautiful.  I was immediately sorry I had not stayed with the salad as my side.  I took a bit of R’s and it was yummy!  Lightly dressed in a tangy vinagreta.  My chips and salsa were good but I really coveted that salad!  My torta was a mile-high!  It was filled with layers of roasted turkey, grilled sweet onions, a spicy peanut sauce and greens all on soft but chewy bread.  The flavor mix was wonderful although the peanut butter sauce had a tendency to stick – just like peanut butter will!  I could only eat half of it and took the other half home for dinner. 

R’s Cubano had been pressed and so was a bit easier to bite into.  It was filled with roasted pork, turkey and ham, cheese and pickles.  It looked amazing!  I forgot to ask her to describe it (I was busy with my own plate!) but I think she liked it as it entirely disappeared!

After we finished we strolled around Fremont checking out some of our favorite shops.  We eventually ended up at Peet’s Coffee where R had one of her quad-shot things and I settled for a non-fat mocha, no whip.  We sat at an outside table sipping our beverages, watched all the (mostly miniature!) dogs walk by, and enjoyed the sun.   We finished up, parted ways and took our memories of a lovely, lazy afternoon home.  

703 N. 34th Street, Fremont
Between the troll and the Fremont Bridge



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