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Originally published Friday, December 5, 2008 at 12:00 AM

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Dining Deals

Georgetown Liquor Company: A nice play on vegetables

Georgetown Liquor Company is a bar where you can enjoy playing retro video games while eating delicious vegetarian/vegan fare.

Seattle Times staff reporter

Georgetown Liquor Company

Vegetarian/vegan

5501 B Airport Way S., Seattle

206-763-6764

www.georgetownliquorcompany.com

Hours: 11 a.m.-2 a.m. Mondays-Fridays and 2 p.m.-2 a.m. Saturdays-Sundays; happy hour 4-7 p.m. Mondays-Fridays.

Etc: 21 and older only; major credit cards accepted; parking on street and in nearby lots; no obstacles to access.

Prices: $

The Georgetown Liquor Company was an odd destination for a committed carnivore such as myself. As a college student, I lived in an apartment where we bought ground beef in 5-pound increments.

But there I was, in a bar up against the train tracks in Georgetown at a place that served nothing but vegetarian fare and where all of the sandwiches had vegan alternatives.

What brought me here was the greatest athlete of my generation: Tecmo Bo — the video-game incarnation of the Raiders' Bo Jackson — on a football game designed for the original Nintendo Entertainment System. There I sat for a good three hours.

Then came a revelation: I was full and satisfied after eating a delicious sandwich — something that had not happened to me during previous vegetarian dining experiences.

Since that first trip, I've returned to the Georgetown Liquor Company, learning to appreciate a good field roast and marveling at what the place can do with vegetables.

The menu: There's a list of appetizers ($4-$8.50), two entrees (mushroom tamales, enchiladas with the option of house-made vegan taco "meat," $13.50), three entree salads and 10 sandwiches served on everything from ciabatta to marbled rye ($9-$10).

What to write home about: The crispy baked polenta. Four triangles of polenta — baked to a slight crust on the outside, warm and pillowy on the inside — come with Gouda cheese, fennel and bourbon-ginger-apple chutney on top. It's a satisfying $8.50 appetizer.

Delicious forbidden rice (black rice cooked in vegetable stock and beer) comes with the tamales and enchiladas. And the split-pea soup is so rich and deliciously salty, the vegan ham deserves a special nod of acknowledgment.

What to skip: The corn chips and salsa, which is housemade but doesn't taste much better than something you could buy at a store, and the Picard — a lentil-sage field-roast sandwich that came with a vegan jus heavy with dark soy sauce.

The setting: The place is dark, just like a bar in the industrial section of town should be, with high-backed booths, 14 drafts on tap and those retro video-game systems available on three different televisions — everything from Donkey Kong to Pitfall.

Summing up: One entree, a sandwich, two appetizers and a beer totaled $40 before tip. Happy hour runs from 4-7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, when well cocktails are $2.50 and there is a dollar discount on appetizers and draft beers.

Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or doneil@seattletimes.com

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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