Buying Spices

When I’m looking for exotic culinary inspiration, or if I need supplies for an Italian Dinner Experience, I turn to World Spice Merchants, Paris Grocery and the Spanish Table in downtown Seattle. The stretch of Western Ave. below Pike Place Market has some of the best little specialty shops for us foodies to get those hard-to-find ingredients for Italian and a vast array of international recipes. From spices to wine, cheeses, paella pans and so much more…I always think I’ll just run in and out to grab that one item I’m missing, but my quick stop inevitably turns into a half-day adventure that starts with me smelling practically every jar of spices in the store and then continues as I wander into the Spanish Table and Paris Grocery–you never know what new delicacy has just arrived!–and completely lose track of time while tasting manchego, chèvre and so many other artisan cheeses from around the world, perusing the wine selections and drooling over must-have kitchen tools and hand-painted ceramics…all activities that obviously lead me to bring home that one thing I needed along with a host of unexpectedly necessary accompanying goodies that I enjoy for the following days, weeks, months… And for some reason, I can’t stop thinking about that one thing I couldn’t convince myself to buy that last time, which eventually requires me to make another trek to my favorite downtown culinary wonderland!

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