I recently watched a documentary called “Public Speaking.” In it, author Fran Lebowitz talks about her life, writing, and time in NYC … and one portion of it really resonated with me and made me laugh. They were interviewing her in her favorite New York restaurant, and she started riffing about how they were sitting at her table … but how there were literally millions who all thought they had their own table in certain NYC restaurants, too.
Well, this is my table
If you’d like to sit there yourself one day–when I’m not there, of course–then you can find it at the Hurricane Cafe in downtown Seattle!
I was actually surprised that–here in tech-heavy Seattle–they don’t have a website (and don’t let www.hurricanecafe.com fool you … that’s a place in Juno, FL with the same name) but you can find them at:
2230 7th Avenue
Seattle, WA 98121-1902
I love the Hurricane myself, but I’ll be honest with you … it’s not for everyone. I love it because:
- it’s open 24 hours/day … making it one of Seattle’s few 24 hour establishments. Plus, it’s got its own parking lot–and it’s fairly decent sized, too–so it’s one of the few restaurants in downtown Seattle where parking isn’t an issue.
- it offers breakfast/lunch/dinner menus 24 hours/day … so I don’t have to worry about what I might be hungry for: they’ve probably got something to satisfy me. Plus, their food is fairly basic … but–with the one exception of a bad tuna sandwich I got there once–it’s always tasty.
- it has free wi-fi, and they don’t mind if my husband and I linger there while we’re eating to play video games across the table.
- I get to sit with my butt against the fireplace … which makes me VERY happy there in the winter time.
- the jukebox plays heavy alternative rock, and the place is populated by tattooed and pierced waitstaff AND clientele. In other words, you don’t have to worry about how you look when you go in there … or what you say. And the neighborhood isn’t the kind of place where you don’t walk aware of your surroundings. Street people are common, as well as the crowd when the bars start closing … but I have my urban merit badge. That sort of neighborhood doesn’t bother me
Other people HATE the Hurricane because:
- their food is fairly basic.
- strange people linger there to talk or play video games.
- the jukebox plays heavy alternative rock.
- the place is populated by tattooed and pierced waitstaff AND clientele.
- and, last but not least, the neighborhood is kinda scary.
We don’t let the colorful neighborhood keep us away. Even though it means we have to drive downtown, we always enjoy a trip down to the Hurricane. The why of that is simple. We don’t have much in the way of 24-hour restaurants in Seattle, and their food is better than the two big 24-hour chains. If we’re dining late–as we often do–we’ll drive past a dozen Shari’s and Denny’s to eat there
This evening, my husband ordered his favorite Deluxe Chicken Burger, with a side of seasoned waffle fries.
I was cold this evening. It’s Wintertime in Seattle, which means I’m going to be cold till May at least … so I ordered a cup of their chicken noodle soup to start out my meal.
And a Grilled Turkey, Bacon and Avocado Sandwich with Onion Rings.
I have to ding them on the temperature of the soup. It’s restaurant-supply-store chicken noodle–acceptable, just nothing special–but this evening it was lukewarm at best. I have trouble with the texture of microwaved foods–meats especially–so I didn’t want to ask them to warm it up for me. It wasn’t as good as it could have been, but–beyond that one blip–we enjoyed the rest of our meals as always. That’s the potential beauty of restaurants that serve basic foods: don’t get fancy, buy good-quality supplies, train your people to cook them well … and you’re golden!
The Hurricane Cafe follows that business plan pretty well. My husband’s Chicken Burger consisted of a grilled chicken patty on a bun, served with mayo, pickle, onions, tomatoes, lettuce (which he had them leave off), and a slice of ham … which is one of his favorite sandwiches at home, too. He said it was excellent! My sandwich was basic as well: deli turkey, mashed avocado, crispy bacon and mayo on white toast. Basic … and absolutely delicious at the same time
Final grade: When you compare Hurricane to the big 24-hour chains–Shari’s and Denny’s–there is no competition. I’ll give them a solid B+ in that arena, without reservation. The neighborhood doesn’t scare us. We can get food any time of the day/night that we need it … and it’s tasty, too!
That’s definitely a score in my book