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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Upmarket restaurant

Mon–Fri 5:00pm–10:00pm
Sat–Sun 10:00am–2:00pm
Sat–Sun 5:00pm–10:00pm

Features Date-friendly, good wines
Bar Beer, wine
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Accepted


Madison Park
2701 E. Madison St.
Seattle, WA
(206) 320-9771
Harvest Vine
From heavenly to horrible—sit at the bar and hope for the best

At this writing, a review of Harvest Vine comes with several caveats. The place is in a state of transition and the panel’s recent visits ranged from “best meal of the year” to “ruined my whole week.” But as of late, the restaurant seems to be righting itself again.

Most of the time Harvest Vine creates delectable Basque tapas with inventive yet focused flavors. You’ll get the best selection if you sit at the bar and make nice with the chefs—off-menu sampling is often revelatory—but usually anything involving duck or venison is excellent. Morcilla is a must, crumbling under the fork, and usually accompanied by a crispy, salty counterpoint like pork belly. But the kitchen has managed on several occasions to wring the salty goodness out of salt cod (pretty much an act of treachery), but dishes like pulpo de feira (boiled octopus) and seared scallops with duck confit and lentils are outstanding. The all-Spanish wine list is a treat, with many bottles that are well within the affordable range. A few Basque selections keep things extra-interesting.

Some of the Jekyll-and-Hyde feeling has to do with where you’re seated. The charming and lively main room has the bar and open kitchen; the downstairs has two rooms, the larger of which feels like the banquet room at a HoJo where the baseball team goes to eat spaghetti after the big game. And no matter where you sit, the service has been spotty. But while Harvest Vine has had its moments of being off, when it’s on, there are few finer dining experiences in the Seattle area.

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