La Medusa - Columbia City
Credit: Seattle Mag / Haley Young
Really good neighborhood restaurants
Restaurant years are like dog years: One equals five, or six or seven. So this year’s 15th anniversary is a milestone that La Medusa can be utterly proud of. The Columbia City mainstay offers a warmth, a comfort and the sincerest of welcomes to the neighbors who fill up the reservation book on a weekly basis. Those bookings aren’t made for sentimental reasons, or not entirely.The food is better than ever with chef Gordon Wishard at the helm. La Medusa’s Sicilian bent—think anchovies, olives, capers and chiles—is echoed in seasonal inspiration: handmade pasta topped with black trumpet mushrooms; and Wednesday farmers-market dinners, for which fresh ingredients are foraged from the nearby Columbia City market. One recent dinner—the kind of unplanned, startlingly great night out that happens not often enough—proved that, even on a wintry Thursday, one might luck into a broad, thick steak cooked to a deep bronze on a hot grill and sent out with glistening fingerling potatoes dressed in garlic, anchovies and capers. It was the steak of the year, and I had it at the little neighborhood restaurant down the street. Surprise, surprise.
File under: Beloved neighborhood haunt, locavore, seasonality, affordability, warm welcome
See also: Eva, Cantinetta, Pair, Olivar, Terra Plata