Christmastime in Kirkland -- there's no place like home

There are two times of year that I most enjoy here in Kirkland: Summertime and Christmastime. During the Summer, there is no better place to be than in the Northwest on a sunny day under the bluest skies you'll ever see (thank you, Perry Como). At Christmastime, walking the streets of downtown Kirkland under the glow of twinkle lights in garland, I am happy.

During this past week we spent several nights dining in downtown Kirkland and I must say, the experience has put me in the Christmas spirit. Kirkland is decorated with wreaths, a rather large Christmas tree, A Cow and Coyote dressed like Santa Claus and Christmas lights everywhere.

On Tuesday, I got home late and missed dinner so I stopped at Wyraqocha Peruvian Kitchen for a bite to eat. I sat at the bar ordered what the bartender suggested: chicken skewers and the Causas Limeña -- what I would describe as a lasagna-esque dish of chicken, avocado and potato. Both dishes were delicious. I also learned they are planning to start a happy hour soon!

On Wednesday night, my brother came to town to join us for Quiz Night at The Wilde Rover, always a fun activity despite our poor trivia skills. This time of year, visiting The Wilde Rover is a treat because it is decorated to the nines and it is always bustling. We ordered the two dishes which are my favorites: Irish Nachos (served with homemade potato chips instead of tortilla chips) and their Pan-Seared Sea Scallops -- served with celeriac puree with a roasted red pepper and basil cream sauce and topped with frizzled leeks -- the best in town.

A fine rare Scotch at Bottle & Bull

On Friday night, Kate and I stopped at Bottle and Bull for dinner. We had to wait in the bar for a table but it was worth it. We slotted into the best seats in the house (in our opinion)... facing the open kitchen. We loved watching the chef and his crew prepare meals as we sipped cocktails and perused the menu. We recommend the dishes we had which were the chicken, the Roman Gnocchi and the Ajiaco, a cuban style stew w/ beef, pork, corn fritters, sweet potato, yucca, lime crema, cilantro. 

On Friday, it was Art Walk, so we walked down Park Lane after dinner and stopped in a few shops. We heard music from the far end of the block and wandered down to find Caffé Rococo where the band Bet Gone Wrong was performing Christmas songs. We stopped for an impromptu concert and had a great time singing along with the standing room only crowd. 

Bet Gone Wrong performing Christmas songs at Caffé Rococo

A parade of bikes

A parade of bikes

Then, out of nowhere, a parade of bicyclists decked out in Christmas lights rode down Park Lane as if they were a two wheeled version of the Argosy Christmas Ships.

We had a lovely week enjoying this holiday season in our city. Everyday we feel lucky to call this place home.