During all the months that end in “ary” or “ember,” Seattle’s weather is depressingly grim. (March and October, too—month names are weird.) The sun goes down at 4pm, the endless mist makes you want a windshield wiper for your eyeglasses, and it’s hard not to constantly wish you were on vacation.
At Stateside, that wish can briefly come true. Eating at this Vietnamese place on Capitol Hill is like taking a short and delicious trip somewhere tropical, where rain-related hair disasters are unheard of, and that classic Seattle wet dog feeling seems like something out of a bad dream.
The palm-tree-printed wallpaper, hanging lights, and plants inside give you an “out of office” feeling as soon as you walk in. The food then keeps you happily distracted from any rainy nonsense going on outside.
Dinner highlights include the crispy duck rolls, fried chicken covered in crunchy scallions and ginger, and Bun Cha with housemade sausage and a delicious caramel fish sauce. Make sure to give an enthusiastic middle finger to the awful weather outside by getting a Thai iced tea or Vietnamese coffee creamsicle for dessert. It’s not quite a beach getaway, but at least you can enjoy it without renewing your passport, packing, or coming back with three bathing suits full of sand.
Stateside is a terrific choice when your priorities include both eating great food and living in denial about Mother Nature’s hatred for Seattle. There’s no way you’ll regret your decision to come, sip tropical cocktails, and relax like it’s a balmy 75 degrees—unless you truly do enjoy feeling cold, wet, and grumpy all the time. In which case, we admit you might not like Stateside. But you’re clearly living in the right city.
Tamarind & Beef Kohlrabi Salad
The crispy garlic and peanut combo works well with the cold vegetables in this dish, and the beef is a great medium rare, but the dressing is really tart.
Crispy Duck Fresh Rolls
Fried duck rolls covered in herbs and wrapped in rice paper. These work well as part of a big spread, but they’re also perfect on their own, washed down with a cocktail. Just make sure you get some either way.
Master Stock Crispy Chicken
This chicken is poached, then fried and served in a rich, super salty sauce. Get a side of jasmine rice and soak up as much of that sauce as you can - then, dip the chicken in the other, spicy ginger chili sauce that comes with it.
Bun Cha Hanoi
Rice noodles with a pile of herbs on top, plus homemade grilled sausage (excellent), pork belly (kind of boring), some crispy rolls, and a caramel fish sauce for dipping. It’s up to you to use the ingredients to make your own ideal bites. The crispy rolls are great, if sometimes a little under-fried.
Thai Iced Tea Creamsicle
At $5.50, this is one of the more expensive popsicles we’ve eaten, but we don’t care. We’d do it again with pleasure.
Vietnamese Iced Coffee Creamsicle
We’d order this one again, too—it’s even better than the Thai Iced Tea pop. Don’t leave here without trying at least one frozen dessert.