When Satwant Kaur’s sister brought her to the original Indian Palace Restaurant in North Seattle, she expected traditional Indian fare to make her feel at home during her first trip to the United States. While there, she also found love at first sight with chef and restaurateur Bir Singh, who was also a native of Northern India. The couple married and moved Indian Palace Restaurant to Woodinville in 2000. They’ve spent long hours running their business together, doing everything from poring over menus and cleaning tables to building robotic busboys from spare parts.
Under the guidance of Singh, who worked as a chef in Paris and went to culinary school in the United States, cooks spice dishes to each customer’s taste. Marinated chicken and tender lamb bake in clay ovens and jumbo prawns simmer in mildly spicy curry sauces. Indian chai tea boiled with spices and milk, mango lassies made with yogurt, and a selection of beers, wines, and cocktails from the lounge cleanse palates between bites.
With more than 700 locations, Jamba Juice proves to the masses that nutrition can be speedy and delicious. Since the beginning, the company’s product philosophy has revolved around choosing whole fruits and other natural ingredients over artificial flavorings, sweeteners, and preservatives. The menu is completely free of high-fructose corn syrup and trans fats, and it offers additional accommodations for vegan and gluten-free diets.
This naturalistic approach is fully realized in Jamba Juice's selection of smoothies. Made with 100% fruit juice, sherbet, and frozen yogurt, the frosty delights range from all-fruit smoothies such as peach perfection and strawberry whirl to more indulgent creamy treats, including peanut butter moo'd, an enticing blend of peanut butter, bananas, nonfat vanilla frozen yogurt, and milk chocolate.
For those with heartier appetites, steel-cut oats steep in soymilk before being enhanced with toppings such as apples, cinnamon, and brown-sugar crumble. The lunch hour presents protein-packed mini wraps, toasted bistro sandwiches and California Flatbreads that pack only about 320–420 calories each.
Pallino serves up a menu of fresh, made-to-order Italian specialties in a casual setting inspired by family gatherings and leisurely bocce games. Antipasti such as roasted garlic and cheese flatbread ($5.95) prep palates for main dishes and help patrons evade amorous vampire kisses. Featuring braised beef and pork with Chianti-spiked tomato sauce and a whisper of cream, mama's meat sauce with rigatoni ($8.95) banishes any doubt about how mama used to get her little noodles to sleep through the night. Pizzas round out the menu with combinations including prosciutto and roasted fig ($6.95/$12.49) and Italian sausage and mushroom ($6.95/$12.49), and paninis ($4.75 for a half; $6.95 for a whole) come with a choice of warm chips or carrot sticks, which are less warm, but make up for it with their svelte figures and pretty faces. Decadent gelato is maneuvered into an array of desserts—it's squeezed between two cookies in gelato sliders ($5.95), topped with espresso and whipped cream in an affogato ($3.50), and bobbing in a soda float, flavored with a choice of syrup ($4.95). Most importantly, the friendly staff and quick service will allow you to make the most of a hearty dinner enjoyed in the clean dining room or as a speedy carryout order.
Cold Stone Creamery's ice cream, which is made fresh in stores every day, inhabits a quantum flux between soft-serve and traditional ice cream, with a rich, creamy texture that whispers tales of its superpremium quality as it glides over taste buds. Choose your favorite ice cream from among dozens of silky flavors, such as irish cream and butter pecan. Each serving generously welcomes dozens of mix-in toppings as traditional as crumbled cookies and chopped nuts or as quirky as granola, black licorice, and pieces from magnetic poetry sets ($2.50–$4.50 for ice cream with one mix-in). Indecision and premature brain freezes are averted by Cold Stone Creamery's chill artisans, who sling a litany of signature sundae creations ($4.50–$5.00), such as the Birthday Cake Remix, which spins two turntables of birthday-cake ice cream layered with tracks of brownies, fudge, and sprinkles. The Frankencream you desire will be scooped cold off the grill into a freshly made waffle cone or bowl.
It's not every day that an aroma can pose a question. Upon stepping into Plaza Garcia Family Mexican Restaurant, the smell of baking tortillas instantly compels diners to ask themselves: do I want to fill those steamy flour blankets with char-grilled beef, marinated chicken, or lime-infused shrimp? Wood-carved booths and colorful murals of adobe villages create an ideal backdrop for mulling over this important decision as diners snack on homemade chips and chunky pico de gallo. Once their gaze tapers off the lively décor and settles onto the menu, an overwhelming choice of enchiladas, fajitas, and other traditional entrees springs forth to lend a choice of beef, chicken, or seafood centerpieces. Meanwhile, margaritas splashed with racy tequilas mingle with other libations to give customers the courage to croon tortilla-themed love ballads during karaoke, which occurs every Saturday night at the Woodinville location.