Michelle and I were walking along the boulevard the parallels Alki Beach when we found Duke’s Chowder house. It was a little cool and drizzly, so chowder sounded good. We sat down and ordered drinks. I ordered a Bloody Mary but could in no way expect what was brought. This thing was garnished with asparagus, an olive and 2 delicious boiled shrimp. I could have stopped there and the drink would have been fabulous. But I took a sip and my mouth was filled with the most flavor tomatoey mélange with a nice kick of both heat and horseradish.
We then started off our seafood orgy with a chowder sampler. The sampler consists of any four of the 7 chowders on the menu. We went with:
- Northwestern Seafood – it was good, but more of a stew than a chowder in my mind. It was the clear fourth place finisher.
- Dungeness Crab – now we’ve reached the upper stratosphere of scrumptiousness. It was rich and creamy with some corn (so Hot Jen may want to avoid).
- Duke’s Traditional Clam — we have now jumped a quantum or two in deliciousness. This chowder was also rich and creamy with some corn. But it also contained quite a bit of potato. It was almost like the richest, creamiest mashed potatoes you could ever imagine.
- Lobster – we have now gone beyond warp 10 and hit metaphysical taste perfection. So, rich and sweet and, well perfect. This stuff is the crack-cocaine of chowder.
For the main event I ordered halibut fish tacos and Meesh got the stuffed prawns. Who knew so much could be stuffed into a prawn. These things were so stuffed with crab and bay shrimp the fire marshall had to write them a ticket.
The fish tacos were an almost equal delight. The blackened halibut had a flavorful heat. And the Mexican twist was pulled off almost perfectly. Surprising, considering we couldn’t be much further from Mexico.
This is an amazing place for a landlubber from Dallas. I fear I would have to completely re-do my grading scheme if I were to live here.
2516 Alki Ave SW Seattle, WA 98116