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Freeform Friday: Revisiting the Washington Food XI

So long apples, clams and Beecher’s, hello crabs, chips and Ivar’s

Ivar’s Photo by Jim Heimann Collection/Getty Images

Unsurprisingly, a lot of you had thoughts about our Seattle food stuff XI last Friday, and expressed your surprise and displeasure at some of the inclusions and omissions. Nearly 250 of you voted on your own lineups, and now the fan-selected Best XI can be unveiled.

Eight of your 11 selections mirrored ours – Rainier cherries, Walla Walla onions, coffee, teriyaki, smoked salmon, Dick’s, craft beer, and Seattle Dogs. But you benched Beecher’s mac & cheese, Cosmic Crisp apples and geoducks in favor of three other worthy entrants – Dungeness Crab, Tim’s Cascade Chips and Ivar’s. Pho just missed out on the starting lineup, but is ready to jump off the bench when called.

GK: Dungeness crab

With geoduck benched, this other native shellfish, named for the community of Dungeness, Washington on the Olympic Peninsula, where it was first commercially harvested, will slot in nicely at goalkeeper. The Dungeness might not have a great vertical, but with that wide body it can cover a lot of ground side-to-side and make claw-tip saves on shots to the far post. And nothing will instill terror into an opponent like an armored shot-stopper with fierce claws, ready to tear an attacker limb-from-limb.

RB: Tim’s Cascade Chips

A relatively new entrant on the Seattle scene, Tim’s got their start in the mid-80s in Auburn, Washington. They specialized in thick-cut potato chips, seasoned and mixed by hand and fried in peanut oil, differentiating themselves from the mass-produced national options of the day. At fullback, Tim’s Chips can hold their own when defending thanks to that fierce crunch, but has the variety of spices and flavor to push forward and do some fun things in attack.

RW: Ivar’s

It’s hard to discern where the mythology ends and the reality begins with Seattle institution Ivar’s, which has been parked on the waterfront since the 1930s. Founder Ivar Haglund was never one to shy away from the absurd when promoting his businesses, trying all sorts of stunts and gimmicks to garner attention, including octopus wrestling and a syrup spill/pancake feed on the railroad tracks, plus a lot of high-minded civic participation including a long-time sponsorship of the city’s 4th of July fireworks show. This sort of creativity and flair is just what’s needed from a wide attacker, who can give you something simple and direct like fish & chips, or go extremely fancy and complex to give you an alder-smoked wild sockeye platter with a side of apple chutney.

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