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 fusion place in 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. Brunch and dinner are both excellent, and since the menus are so different, you should come for each at least once.
Brunch options range from savory Asian-inspired dishes - like a scrambled egg banh mi, or eggs benedict with a pretzel-like bao bun - to sweeter tropical choices like a yogurt parfait with mango pudding, tapioca, fresh fruit, and toasted grains. The brunch-only pho-braised beef potstickers are some of the best dumplings we’ve had in all of Seattle, so don’t leave without trying those.
At dinner, the menu is more expansive. 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.
Tasty little pan-fried dumplings with an excellent black vinegar dipping sauce. These are our favorite brunch appetizer, and our only complaint is that you can’t order them at dinner, too.
Homemade coconut cream yogurt with mango pudding, tapioca, fruit salad, and toasted sweetened Asian grains. An excellent, lighter brunch option.
A quality breakfast sandwich with homemade sausage, scrambled egg, green onion, pickled vegetables, mayo, Maggi (which tastes like the love child of soy sauce and beef bouillon), and cilantro.
Do not miss the Eggs Bao’nedict at brunch. The bao bun-style base is stuffed with Canadian bacon, then fried and topped with poached eggs, hollandaise, and pork floss. Not a good dish to share - you’re going to want it all.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.