Today I finally sank into a barstool for a late lunch at Purple Cafe & Wine Bar‘s 6-month-old Seattle location. But when I say sank, I really don’t mean it, because like the chairs at the regular tables, the ceiling, and even the napkin holders, the barstools are made out of gigantic metal basketweave. I’m not sure if it’s iron or some sort of ultramodern metal blend, but by the time my tired 3 p.m. body had wrestled the roughly 5,000-pound barstool out from under the bar, forcing my shopping bag (singular) to slide awkwardly down my arm and smashing my shin with the chair in the process, opened my napkin and dropped the heavy ring into my lap, this nice-looking woven iron deco bruised me purple in exactly three places.
But I made it into the stool without wincing out loud, and was immediately placated with a delicious, well-priced glass of jammy Italian Ognissoli primitivo, a.k.a. the original zinfandel grape. Starved by the snowstorm and the usual Tuesday afternoon lull, Purple was completely vacant, and despite the bad elevator music my friend and I revelled in the fact that one doesn’t often drink red wine mid-afternoon.
My burger’s interior was the perfect pink; the sweet potato fries that came with it were fabulously salty, and, miracle of the sweet potato fry world, even a little cruncy. My friend’s warm BLTA (bacon, lettuce, tomato, and avocado) on baguette was also great, but the accompanying salad looked like whatever must have been leftover from the lunch rush – lettuces of all kinds, a mix of cut large lettuces and baby lettuces, with an undersalted, strangely basil-flavored vinaigrette that did nothing to help the flavor of the half-dead lettuce.
But I’ll go back, hopefully at the right hour to have a cheese- and wine-tasting flight, and I’ll be prepared – earphones to mask the Yanni, a smart mouth to make someone else pull the chairs around for me, and a clean, hungry palate ready for more yummy red wine.