A feast for game day

This tailgating menu hits the spot with spicy grilled ribs, rich stew, crunchy salad, and the perfect wine

A feast for game day

Chef Christopher Hartfield serves his Green Chile-Chicken Stew.

Jim Henkens

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For passionate fans of the University of Washington football team, game days can be a slingshot ride from victory to heartbreak. But no matter how their team fares, one longtime group of tailgaters always has a winning lineup.

The tailgaters ― a rotating group of Seattle-area restaurateurs, winemakers, and professionals ― take turns making the food.

Today, chef Christopher Hartfield, best known for stints at restaurants like Bandoleone and Serafina, is manning the grill. "Each year we take it up a bit," he says. "We started with hot dogs, but here we're giving the menu a twist."

"We're evolving," says David Crouch, a Seattle-area orthodontist. "Now that we have winemakers in our group, we've thrown out the box wine."

They've also extended the party well past game time, often catching the plays on radio or television as they continue feasting. Such is the case this day, and as the sound of 70,000 Husky fans howling in disappointment floats over the parking lot, Crouch lifts a glass, smiles, and says, "The lousier the team, the better the party."


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