Sweet corn on the cob is the darling of the moment: Not only seasonal right now in Western Washington, but increasingly an a la carte fixture on menus, usually uniquely buttered.
In recent days I’ve hoisted a cob at Un Bien, the pretender to the Paseo’s Cuban sandwich throne along 15th in Ballard, where it is grilled over the fire, then comes wrapped in foil to seal in the prodigious amounts of aioli, parmesan, cilantro, paprika, salt, and fresh lime juice. This is not a minimalist treatment; corn purists will recoil in horror. Everyone else will get a really messy smile.
At Nue, the global bar-nosh outpost in Pike/Pine, the corn is browned over the fire then slathered in a blend of butter, spices, and coconut. (Corn and coconut show up all over Nue’s menu, from the coconut/pineapple cornbread with the goat curry during the meal to the Mexican Street Corn ice cream after it.) If it’s slightly overcooked, it’s not by much…and the flavor compensates. This corn is addictive.
Martino’s, the smoked meat house up Greenwood way, blanches its corn on the cob, then grills it with seasoned butter and the same rub they use on their stunning Santa Maria Tri-Tip sandwich (one of my Top 25 Sandwiches in Seattle). Delish.
Need more? Check out Mexican and barbecue joints—always the likeliest corn suspects—and do it soon: Corn’s early this year.