365 Things To Do Around the Eastside

Sharing Things To Do Around Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, Issaquah, Sammamish and Woodinville

Day 33 of 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: Steak Dinner at John Howie Steak Bellevue WA

John Howie Steak Bellevue WA at The Bravern USDA Prime Filet & American Wagyu Filet photo by Mike HestnessI had the pleasure of eating at John Howie Steak two weeks ago and I am still raving about how fantastic it was!

I love Steak. When John Howie announced that he was going to open a new restaurant at The Bravern in Bellevue WA my taste buds started to salivate. I waited a few months before I checked it out; now that I have eaten there I am HOOKED!

John Howie Steak is definitely an upscale classy dining experience. Its decor is modern and well-lit – which is something I like – I want to see what I am eating. (El Gaucho in Bellevue was so dark we used small flashlights to read the menu!!!) There is a nice size Bar, but I can imagine it gets full during the week after work. The dining room has a nice wall of windows that lets in lots of natural light.

While it is a beautiful restaurant we came for the BEEF so here is a recap of our meal:

They serve some pretty tasty fresh made breads, crackers and rolls. There were 4 or 5 different ones. I liked the Rosemary Rolls – warm, light, slightly salty and tender.

We had 2 starterJohn Howie Steak Bellevue WA The Bravern Calamari s. The 1st was one Fried Calamari and Baby Artichokes with Roasted Garlic and Lemon Aioli. This dish was the only thing that was disappointing. The Calamari was slightly soggy instead of a Fried Crispy treat. The serving size was ample enough for the 3 of us to share (we didn’t even finish it all).

Tempura Bacon at John Howie Steak Bellevue WA at The Bravern

The 2nd starter we ordered was FREAKING FANTASTIC!!! Tempura Fried Kurobuta Bacon with a Spicy Maple Ponzu Sauce!!! This is on their Happy Hour/Bar Menu – lucky for us our server was able to snag an order for us. The Bacon was Thick and Salty. The Tempura was fried to a beautiful golden brown, it was crunchy and light. The Spicy Maple Ponzu Sauce complimented the flavor of the bacon and the crispness to the tempura. This very well could be THE BEST THING I HAVE EVER EATEN!!! My motto when eating is “Everything is Better with Bacon!”

On to the main event one of us had the Alaskan Halibut that was pan-seared with Morel Mushrooms, English Peas, White and Green Asparagus. Alaskan Halibut at John Howie Steak Bellevue WA at The Bravern It had a light lemon and butter sauce. The serving size was large enough for the 3 of us to share and we even had some leftover to take home. The fish was firm and tasted fresh. The Asparagus was cooked perfectly, which was a nice surprise since most of the time when eating Asparagus at a restaurant it can be overcooked.

John Howie Steak Bellevue WA at The Bravern USDA Prime Filet & American Wagyu Filet photo by Mike Hestness

Two of us had a USDA Prime Filet and an America Wagyu Beef Filet. Both Filets were 4 ounces. They were served straight up with no sauce or vegetables. The USDA Prime Filet is Omaha raised beef and grilled over Mesquite Coals. It was cooked to medium rare and was thick and juicy. Tender is not the right word for this steak. It was more than tender. The flavor was big and bold. It was what Beef should be. The Just the right amount of fat to give it a deep taste.

Wagyu Fillet John Howie Steak Bellevue WA at The Bravern

The American Wagyu Beef Filet was an incredible piece of meat. John Howie Steak gets their Wagyu Beef from Snake River Farms over in Boise. The meat from Wagyu Cattle is known worldwide for its marbling characteristics, increased eating quality through a naturally enhanced flavor, tenderness and juiciness. Once again tender is not the right way to describe these Filets. They were SOFT, soft like butter that has been sitting in the sunshine all afternoon. The Wagyu are equal in taste to a Kobe steak. They are rich, marbled, thick, juicy and SOFT. You will not have a better piece of meat. It was simply perfect. Cooked just right – with a warm red center. Using any sauces would have been sacrilege. Wagyu Beef should be enjoyed naked and in its purest form.

Five Cheese Twice Baked Stuffed Potato at John Howie Steak Bellevue WA We also had 2 sides for the table: Asparagus Spears with brown butter and Meyer Lemon Hollandaise. Once again the Asparagus was cooked right it was young and tender. In addition to the Asparagus we had a Five Cheese Twice Baked Stuffed Potato with Bacon. This Potato was almost as large as a Nerf Football! Again it was awesome.

We didn’t really need desert, but we ordered it anyway.  It was a unanimous choice for getting the Flourless Semi-Sweet Chocolate Volcano Cake with warm Caramel Ganache, Vanilla Crème and two scoops of Vanilla Bean Ice Cream. It was as expected – excellent!Chocolate Lava Cake at John Howie Steak Bellevue WA

I am looking forward to trying out John Howie Steak Happy Hour (Monday – Friday 3-6 and late night Monday – Thursday 9-11 Saturday 9-Midnight and Sunday 3-10).  If you would like to meet me at John Howie Steak for Happy Hour just let me know and I will be there. I want to try their Epic USDA Prime Beef Bacon Cheeseburger and the Beecher’s Flagship Reserve Cheddar Macaroni and Cheese.

John Howie Steak on Facebook

John Howie Steak at The Bravern
11111 NE 8th Street
Bellevue WA 98004
425 440 0880


May 11, 2010 Posted by | Eating Out, Happy Hour | , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

60 Minutes Story on “Strategic Defaults” in Real Estate – Walking Away is it Right?

Last night on 60 Minutes they had an interesting report on people who owe more money on their home mortgage than they could sell their house for. This is known as being “Underwater” on your home.

More and more people who are Underwater on their homes are choosing to walk away from their loans and homes in a Strategic Default.

Watch CBS News Videos Online

What do you think about this trend?

If you or someone you know needs to BUY or SELL Real Estate? Call me and I will help!

Randy Randolph Uber Agent

Randy Randolph

Uber Agent

206-234-3647 cell


RSVP Real Estate Randy Randolph Uber Agent

May 10, 2010 Posted by | real estate | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Bonus Item 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: Farmers Market Schedule

Here is a Bonus for the entire Summer Season

List of Farmers Markets on the Eastside for 2010!

Bellevue Farmers Market

Bellevue Farmers Market
Thursdays, 3pm-7pm

May 13 – October 14, 2010

First Presbyterian Church of Bellevue
1717 Bellevue Way NE, Bellevue

Bellevue Farmers Market

Bellevue Farmers Market
Saturdays, 10am-3pm

Jun 5 – November 20, 2010

Washington Square
10610 NE 8th St, Bellevue

Crossroads Farmers Market

Crossroads Farmers Market
Tuesdays, Noon-6:30pm
May 25 – October 5, 2010

NE 8th & 156th Ave NE, Bellevue

Issaqauh Farmers Market

Issaquah Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9am-2pm
Apr 10 – October 9, 2010

1730 10th Ave NW, Issaquah

Juanita Farmers Market

Juanita Beach Farmers Market
Fridays, 3pm-7pm
May 14 – October 9, 2010

9703 NE Juanita Drive, Kirkland

Kirkland Farmers Market

Kirkland Farmers Market
Wednesdays, 2pm-7pm
May 5 – October 13, 2010

Marina Park, Kirkland

Mercer Island Farmers Market

Mercer Island Farmers Market
Sundays, 11am-3pm
June 20 – October 17, 2010

SE 32nd St at Mercerdale Park, Mercer Island

Redmond Farmers Market

Redmond Farmers Market
Saturdays, 9am-3pm
May 1 – October 30, 2010

7730 Leary Way NE, Redmond

May 6, 2010 Posted by | Eating Out, Family Activities, Gardening | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 21 of 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: Seattle Restaurant Week 3 Courses for $25

Seattle Restaurant Week

Seattle Restaurant Week

April 18 to 29, 2010 over 100 Restaurants are offering a special 3 Course Dinner for Just $25 – it’s time for Seattle Restaurant Week! This is a way to celebrate local Chefs and Restaurants while eating some incredible food.

Local Eastside restaurants that are participating in this promotion include some very well reviewed names:

  • Artisanal Brasserie

  • Barrio Mexican Kitchen and Bar

  • Purple Café and Wine Bar

  • Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar

  • Wild Ginger

  • Anthony’s HomePort Kirkland

  • Beach Café

  • bin on the lake

  • Lynn’s Bistro

  • Trellis

  • Bennett’s Pure Food Bistro

  • The Dining Room

  • Woodman Lodge Steakhouse and Saloon

  • Barking Frog

You can check out more of the details for Seattle Restaurant Week on Facebook

Seattle Restuarant Week 2010

Seattle Restuarant Week 2010 on Facebook

To help celebrate Seattle Restaurant Week the Seattle Restaurant Cooperative is giving away a $100 Dinner Gift Certificate each day during this week long dining event. You can enter here

I think we are going to go to Seastar and give it a taste, which one are you going to try?

seastar restaurant and raw bar

April 21, 2010 Posted by | Eating Out | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 20 of 365 Things to Do Around the Eastside: Dine in Your Car at Burgermaster

BurgermasterI love Burgers, Shakes and Fries. Load up the car and head to one of the 5 Burgermaster locations around the Eastside. It is a total retro experience, minus the roller SKATES (although it would be way cool if they still skated). You pull into a parking space, turn on your headlights and wait for one of the servers to come to your car to take your order. While you wait for your burger to be cooked to order, you can turn up the tunes on the radio and rock out.

Your food will be brought to your car on a tray, roll your window up a bit so the tray can hang off the window and dive into the fantastic food.

Their Burgers are some of the BEST around. Thick, Juicy, Classic and Tasty. The menu is short sweet and simple: Burgermaster, Cheeseburger, Hamburger, Baconmaster (my fave) and Burgermelt.  Each burger can be customized with your choice of condiments, but for purists order just as it is on the menu, the same way since 1952.

They have thick, creamy and smooth Shakes or even better TRY ONE OF THEIR MALTS!!! They have 10 traditional flavors of Shakes: Chocolate, Hot Fudge, Strawberry, Vanilla, Pineapple, Root Beer, Blackberry, Tom and Jerry, Coffee, Mocha.

The Onion Rings are some of the best around. Large, Crispy and made with real sliced onions.

There are locations in Bellevue, Mill Creek, Everett, Aurora and University District. Make it a quest to visit each one this summer.

Awesome Burgers!


April 20, 2010 Posted by | Eating Out, Family Activities | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 14 of 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: Tax Day and Tax Reform Events

Today is April 15, 2010 and it is the United States of America Tax Filing Day and today there are groups across the country and around Seattle that are calling for MAJOR TAX REFORM! Whether it is a Tea Party Movement, a Flat Tax, a VAT or the FairTax, everyone agrees that our current 65,000 page tax code is not working.  JUST REMEMBER THAT TAXES AFFECT YOU PERSONALLY EVERYDAY! Healthcare, while important, doesn’t have a daily impact on your wallet.

While, I am not a member of the Tea Party, I do like the fact that they have drawn MAJOR ATTENTION to reforming our tax code. I AM A VERY BIG SUPPORTER OF THE FAIRTAX!!! If you have questions about the FairTax or want to learn more, please email me Randy Randolph. The FairTax is Simple, Easy, Transparent, Equal and returns the POWER back to the CITIZENS!

While the MAIN EVENT for the FairTax is being held in Washington DC and online, there are some local “Tax Revolt” events going on that are worth attending.

Get ready for the biggest rally endeavor Washington has ever seen! Several of our state’s premier tea party groups have combined forces (and locations) to bring you “Tea for Two,” a one-day, two-part rally that will take place on both our State Capitol Campus and in downtown Seattle at Westlake Park.

Read the press release below for more details.

April 13, 2010

Tea Party groups to protest in Seattle and Olympia on Tax Day

Olympia – Washington’s tea party groups and the Evergreen Freedom Foundation will come together to bring citizens “Tea for Two,” an all-day, two-part rally that will take place on both the State Capitol Campus and in downtown Seattle. The events are scheduled for Thursday, April 15, from noon to 3 p.m. on the North Capitol Steps in Olympia and then at 5:30 p.m. in downtown Seattle’s Westlake Park.

The event is hosted by Pierce County Tea Party, Seattle Sons and Daughters of Liberty, the Freedom Foundation, Tea Party Patriots, and South Sound Tea Party.

The non-partisan gathering will feature an array of dynamic speakers including David Boze, Dori Monson, Kirby Wilbur, Amber Gunn, and “Liberty Belle” Keli Carender. Both rallies are packed with an assortment of live music and family-friendly entertainment, and will give citizens the chance to make their voices heard on the issues of increased government spending and taxation as well as the recently passed health care bill.

The Seattle and Olympia tea parties are part of the National Tea Party movement taking place on April 15, the day when federal income taxes are due. In Washington, many citizens will gather to protest the legislature’s decision to raise taxes while state spending continues to increase. Others have expressed outrage and disappointment at the list of new taxes recently passed by the Washington state legislature, including candy, soda, tobacco, and alcohol taxes. The legislature passed the new tax package and adjourned their session early this morning.

“Government at all levels is continuing to grow. Though our federal tax burden is relatively low by recent historical standards, deficits, debt and entitlement obligations have reached historic levels. At some point this imbalance will have to be corrected,” says Amber Gunn, Director of Economic Policy at the Freedom Foundation.

“State officials don’t have as many options when it comes to the ‘buy now, pay later’ scheme, so they have passed the largest tax package in state history, along with a half-billion dollar debt package they hope voters will be duped into supporting. Mounting pension and retiree health obligations were completely ignored, per usual,” adds Gunn.

“As it stands, our elected officials are spending our future prosperity. This rally is one of many ways for us to hold them accountable and let them know that we will remember in November.”

For more information, please visit: http://www.teapartypatriots.com

Read more: http://blog.thenewstribune.com/politics/2010/04/14/tea-party-activists-plan-tax-day-protests-in-olympia-seattle/#ixzz0lC8GdFkz

Both rallies are packed with an assortment of engaging speakers, live music, and family-friendly entertainment, while at the same time giving you the chance to make your voice heard on issues like Health Care, Taxation, and Out-of-Control Government.


David Boze

Dori Monson

Kirby Wilbur

Amber Gunn

Liberty Belle

Hosted by:
Pierce County Tea Party – www.piercecountyteaparty.com
Seattle Sons and Daughters of Liberty – www.redistributingknowledge.com
The Evergreen Freedom Foundation – www.effwa.org
Tea Party Patriots – www.teapartypatriots.com
South Sound Tea Party – www.southsoundteaparty.com

If you can’t make it to a LIVE Tax Event, join the OnlineTaxRevolt.com!

You can also catch a report on all the events of the day at OnlineTaxRevolt.com, the program will be streamed live at 5 PM Eastern, 2 PM central.

Online Tax Revolt Rally Featured Speakers:

  • Radio Hall of Fame Talk Show Host Neal Boortz
  • Freedom Works Chairman Dick Armey
  • Tea Party Express leader Amy Kremer
  • Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist
  • United States Senator Saxby Chambliss
  • Congresswoman Michele Bachmann
  • Congressman Steve King
  • Darla Dawald, National Director of ResistNet a Grassfire Nation Website
  • Comedienne Victoria Jackson
  • Online Tax Revolt Chairman Ken Hoagland

Online Tax Revolt March for America Team Leaders:

  • Neal Boortz, Hall of Fame Radio Show Host
  • Michael Reagan, Eldest Son of President Ronald Reagan
  • Mike Huckabee, Fox TV Network Commentator, former Governor of Arkansas
  • John McCain, U.S. Senator from Arizona
  • Ken Hoagland, National Chairman, Online Tax Revolt
  • Congressman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), the first member of Congress to join the Online Tax Revolt
  • Congressman Dan Lungren (R-CA), California’s leading tax fighter in Washington
  • Congressman Todd Tiahrt (R-KS)
  • Grover Norquist, President of Americans for Tax Reform
  • Dick Armey, President of FreedomWorks and former House Majority Leader
  • Richard A. Viguerie, a founder of the modern conservative movement
  • Duane Parde, President, National Taxpayers Union
  • Lew Uhler, President of the National Tax Limitation Committee
  • The Tea Party Express
  • Mike Long, New York State Conservative Party
  • Joe “The Plumber” Wurzelbacher, the more-than-plumber voice for average Americans
  • Veterans Marching for America Again
  • Freedom Works Chairman Dick Armey
  • Tea Party Express leader Amy Kremer
  • Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist
  • United States Senator Saxby Chambliss
  • Congresswoman Michele Bachmann
  • Congressman Steve King
  • Darla Dawald, National Director of ResistNet a Grassfire Nation Website
  • Comedienne Victoria Jackson Online Tax Revolt Chairman Ken Hoagland

Stand Up For America and Yourself – Get involved and make a difference!

April 15, 2010 Posted by | Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Day 13 of 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: Leave Work Early and go for a Walk

Sorry this 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside is being posted late. I have been outside enjoying the SUNSHINE today.

You should tell your boss that you have to leave early and take care of something UBER important; then head to your fave  WALKING trail around Redmond, Kirkland or Sammamish and just go for a nice long relaxing stroll.

If you have a 4-legged buddy you could grab the LEASH, CHUCK-IT and TENNIS BALL and head to an OFF LEASH PARK. Here is a list of Eastside Dog Parks.


Chocolate Lab & Golden Retriever

April 14, 2010 Posted by | Dogs, Family Activities | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Day 10 of 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: National Open House Weekend ~ Home Buying Season

This weekend is National Open House Weekend. Homes that are for sale across the country are held open this weekend for buyers to stop by and get a good look.

This year it is even MORE important since the FIRST TIME HOME BUYER TAX CREDIT expires in just 19 days!!! If you want totake advantage of the TAX CREDIT program, then you HAVE TO BE OUT LOOKING AT HOMES TODAY!!!

Just in case you don’t think there are any quality homes out there for you to look at:

Redmond has 85 Open Single Family Homes! Priced from $197,000 to 1,499,000!

Redmond has 41 Open Condos! Priced from $150,000 to $519,990!

Kirkland has 80 Open Single Family Homes! Priced from $228,000 to $5,995,000!

Kirkland has 56 Open Condos! Priced from $155,000 to $2,250,000!

Bellevue has 90 Open Single Family Homes! Priced from $309,000 to $3,797,000!

Bellevue  has 63 Open Condos! Priced from $145,000 to $1,295,000!

Sammamish has 59 Open Single Family Homes! Priced from $347,000 to $1,499,900!

Sammamish has 4 Open Condos! Priced from $245,000 to $305,000!

Issaquah has 56 Open Single Family Homes! Priced from $328,900 to $2,490,000!

Issaquah has 27 Open Condos! Priced from $125,950 to $900,000!

Woodinville has 47 Open Single Family Homes! Priced from $319,000 to $1,895,000!

Woodinville has 12 Open Condos! Priced from $295,950 to $725,000!

I will be hosting an OPEN HOUSE on Sunday April 11, 2010 from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm in Redmond. This Custom Built Craftsman Home is situated on just over 1 Acre and is surrounded by Million Dollar Estates.

  • Priced Competitively at $609,900

  • Custom Built in 2004

  • 5 Bedrooms

  • 2 1/2 Baths

  • 2650 Square Feet

  • 3 Car Garage

  • Hardwood Floors on the Main Level

  • Formal Living Room

  • Formal Dinning Room

  • Spacious Kitchen with Pantry

  • Gas Cooktop

  • Eating Area in Kitchen

  • Large Family Room with Gas Fireplace & Built Ins

  • Private Den on Main Level

  • Master Retreat Features Gas Fireplace & Wired for Flat Screen TV

  • His and Hers Closets

  • Master Bath has Skylight

  • Corner Soaking Bathtub

  • Separate Double Headed Shower

  • All Bedrooms are Ample Sized

  • HUGE Bonus Room could be used for Media Room

  • Upstairs Laundry Room

  • Roomy Deck for Summertime Entertaining

  • Large Grassy Backyard

  • Side Yards have Amazing Trees

  • Secluded Private Setting

  • Extra Parking for Boat, RV and other Toys

24540 NE Union Hill Rd

Redmond WA 98053

Custom Built Craftsman

Custom Built Craftsman

Wonderful Front Porch

Wonderful Front Porch

Large Kitchen

Large Kitchen

Home Sits on over an Acre
Home Sits on over an Acre

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April 11, 2010 Posted by | real estate | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Day 9 of 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: A Sign of Spring~Fuchsia Saturday

There are several signs that Spring is here and Summer will be following – unpredictable weather (rain, sun, hail, snow all in the same day); it stays light until after 7:00 pm and Fred Meyer’s hold their Annual Fuchsia Saturday Planting Event.

The dirt starts flying on April 10, 2010 at 9:00 rain or shine! This is the 20th Anniversary of this event!

Fred Meyers Fuchsia Saturday

Fred Meyers Fuchsia Saturday

Create your own custom planter!
Purchase starts and a container (or bring pots
from home), and Freddy’s will plant them FREE using
premium Black Gold Potting Soil.

Fuchsia Basket

Fuchsia Basket

Choose from a wide variety of starts, including
Fuchsias, Seed Geraniums and — NEW this
— Strawberries. All 5 for $3!



Plus, nursery pot recycling! Bring your old plastic nursery pots to our Garden Center anytime through April 10,
and we’ll recycle them for you.

Find a store near you!

April 10, 2010 Posted by | Gardening | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 8 of 365 Things To Do Around the Eastside: Friday = Happy Hour

Happy Friday! WOW what a strange week, but now that it’s almost over it’s time for getting together with friends for a little Food, Fun & Drink! Happy Hour in downtown Bellevue is simply FANTABULOUS and easy.

You can find plenty of FREE parking at Bellevue Square and walk to over 20 different restaurants within just 1 ½ blocks. Today picks is:

The Cheesecake Factory Bellevue – yes, you read right! The Cheesecake Factory is now offering a HAPPY HOUR! The apps are just $5 each and there are over 40 Happy Hour Choices! Chicken Taquitos, Southern Fried Chicken Sliders, Buffalo Blasts (sorta like a chicken wing), Roadside Sliders, Hot Spinach & Cheese Dip, Avocado Eggrolls, Fried Mac & Cheese, Sweet Corn, Tamale-Cakes, Fire-Roasted Fresh Artichoke, Vietnamese Shrimp Summer Roll, Made-to-Order Guacamole, Tex-Mex Eggrolls, Fried Calamari, Chicken Pot Stickers, Crispy Crab Wontons and Factory Nachos. If you order a few apps you will leave FULL and most likely with a DOGGIE BAG J

Now for the FUN part – The Drink menu features: Mojito, Long Island Iced Tea, Margarita, J.W.’s Pink Lemonade and Cosmos for $5 each. Also they will offer $5 select well drinks; $5 selected wine by the glass.

This is just a sample of the menu, which may vary by which location you visit (there are 3 in the Seattle area).

Be prepared for a crowded bar and possible waits, but that’s what you expect on a Friday night happy hour at a hot restaurant.

401 Bellevue Sq
Bellevue, WA 98004
(425) 450-6000

  • April 9, 2010 Posted by | Happy Hour | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment