Critic’s Notebook

Where I Hope My Adoring Family Will Take Me on Mother’s Day

Three joints you probably aren’t expecting.

By Kathryn Robinson May 7, 2012

The mouthwatering Two Bells Tavern burger.

Not that I’m out to control this or anything—but family: Do you know yet where you’ll be celebrating my exceptional mothering skills next Sunday?

If not, perhaps I can be of assistance.

Because where I really want to go may be different from where you think I want to go. Sometimes families go all big-bucks-buffet-line-water-view fancy for Mom, when a place whose food springs from a simpler authenticity is more satisfying. Not to mention cheaper, which will leave you more to spend on my presents.

Here are three suggestions.

Pan Africa Grill is the latest toast of West Seattle, serving up monster portions of carefully cooked African plates like groundnut stew with yams, moist mustard-olive chicken, and curried goat. It’s extraordinary, and served in quarters decorative enough to make me feel pampered. Plus what could be more fun than African beer?

Actually Proletariat Pizza might be just a scoch more fun. That large-hearted pizzeria in the heart of White Center is filled with young families chowing down on pies like The Favorite: Mondo’s Italian sausage, Mama L’il’s peppers, mozzarella, and plenty of fresh garlic—on toothsome hand-crafted crusts blistered just so. Followed by some seriously insane tiramisu.

Finally, Two Bells Tavern on the northeast edge of Belltown feels like time travel back to my misspent youth and tastes like…well, it tastes like a fat burger on a sourdough baguette, truth be told, in an exceptionally delectable way. The vibe is laid-back and arty, the beer selection various and local, and it’s open til 2am.

Oh oops…darn, it’s a tavern. No kids. I would never suggest that that might be the best Mother’s Day present of all. Never.

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