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Blackboard Bistro



One word to describe the food at Blackboard Bistro, as they so fittingly put on their blackboard menu, savory.

Recommended by the boyfriend’s co-worker, we decided to try out this Contemporary American restaurant on California Avenue in West Seattle for lunch. We honestly went in here not knowing what to expect. I hadn’t even Yelped it ahead of time! I think we both agreed that it was a pleasant surprise.

I think it’s the first time in awhile I actually slowed down to taste and enjoy the food, because there was so much flavor to experience. I actually found myself trying to dissect all the ingredients that were used in the dishes.

They immediately won us over with their dip made of pumpkin seeds, browned butter, and oregano served with bread. Drools… talk about having cravings!

From their seasonally changing menu, hence the concept of a dynamic blackboard menu, Troy ordered the beer battered oyster sliders with tartare sauce and french fries. I chose lamb meatballs with couscous and dried kale. Both absolutely delicious!

Chef Jacob personally visited our table after our meal to see how everything was, which made the experience feel very personal and that much more enjoyable. For anyone living in the Seattle area or for anyone with upcoming visits to our rainy city, I would definitely recommend this restaurant.

BONUS: Blackboard will be participating in Seattle Restaurant Week!

BONUS x2: I came across this when I was purchasing my LivingSocial deal for a cooking class through Dish It Up, Chef Jacob will be teaching a class on 4/25/2011 at the Magnolia location.


Somen Salad Bento


The sun’s out and the flowers are blooming; it’s officially Spring which means Summer is near! To celebrate the few days of sunshine that’s graced Seattle, I decided to make a summer salad dish for my bento, the Somen Salad. I love cold noodles in general, all seasons of the year, but this dish has officially become one of my top 5 favorites. Mostly because I found out how easy it was to make and more so because it was approved by my mom, the harshest food critic around. ;)

Click here for details on all ingredients used.

Panda Bento Box


This adorable panda is one my favorite Bento Boxes. It was a gift from Troy when I first started packing bento lunches, purchased from the Marketplace at The Wing (museum in Seattle). It’s a two-tiered box with a sealed lid on the top compartment. It’s held together by a bento band with the panda’s eyebrows, so cute!

and now a sneak peek at SmileFelt Bento Bags…coming soon!

Here is a bento bag I created to carry my Panda Bento Box, inspired by furoshiki wraps with a modern twist. More designs and patterns coming soon to SmileFelt Crafts!

Yakisoba Bento


This was my first attempt at making Yakisoba and I was pleased with the outcome! It’s an easy dish to create and I think that it tastes good both hot and cold, making it a great bento dish. I also like that the ingredients can be diverse. I used chicken tenders, red/orange/yellow bell peppers, broccoli slaw mix, and onions to create this yummy treat.

Click here for details on all ingredients used.

Live Portrait by Amy Nikaitani


Amy Nikaitani is one of the featured artists from The Wing’s current exhibit, Home Revealed: Artists of the Chinatown – International District. As part of the Lunar New Year season celebration, she visited the museum and demonstrated her sumi ink figure drawings, as well as live portrait sessions using pastel. Here is her portrait session of Troy..

Click here to see the final product!

Hiking Bento – Snack Version


Solo Hike on Tiger Mountain

Another weekend of hiking up Tiger Mountain! This time I decided to stick to the trail I know, West Tiger #3, since I was hiking solo.

I almost made it to the top but the snow hadn’t melted yet and my running shoes weren’t cutting it on the slippery slush. I had to turn around with less than .5 miles to go… but took a snack break!

Snack Bento

I guess I wasn’t completely solo on my hike, I had Norio Black to keep me company! I packed a simple furikake onigiri with pickled plum in this Onigiri Box with grape tomatoes in the lower compartment.

Thank you again to JustBento and Bento&Co for this adorable gift!