Silva Is Chef Eric Rivera's 20 Plate Crash Course On Washington
Whether you’re enveloped in the wind soaked foothills of Ellensburg, the flood carved valleys of the Columbia Basin, or Seattle’s rainy metropolis, people tend to forget how vastly the landscape changes after driving a few hours. While arguments about what’s the best part of the state rage on, we can all agree that it’s at the very least the crown jewel of the Pacific Northwest (sorry, Oregon). Fellow Washingtonian Eric Rivera will highlight our state’s various regions through a 20 course culinary clinic at Ballard’s addo:incubator.
SILVA means forest in Latin, but in addo’s context, it’s an all access look into the people, food, and cooking techniques that are “telling the story of Washington at all times,” Chef Eric says. Using past, present and future events as inspiration, he’s aiming to create an edible multiverse filled with stories, historical context, and characters that influenced popular food options we love today. “What were indigenous people using before westernization?” Chef Eric asks rhetorically. He’ll answer with the food your plate, designed to educate you about Washington as much as it is to taste wonderful.
The menu follows a weekly template that is presented in four sets of five plates. Each set is a collection of five small or large items, it all depends on what story it tells. Each plate will move you across the state like an interactive timeline. Moving from west to east, diners can expect to cast off with a bounty of Puget Sound seafood and move inland across the Cascade Mountains towards ingredients that are foraged and hunted. Then you’ll trek through Eastern Washington’s agricultural based culture for a surplus of farmed ingredients like apples, onions, potatoes, and even mint.
SILVA aims to take high end dining into new realms by manipulating more than just your taste buds. Temperatures, lights, and sounds can be changed from course to course. Maybe the lights get turned way down with ocean sounds coming from the speakers while you move around the space, enjoying different courses in different scenes - all designed to elevate the meal beyond the plate in front of you.
Seattle diners have a world of flavor at their fingertips, but many get lost in the edible tourist trap of calm chowder bread bowls and crab cakes. The Pacific Northwest has so many indigenous and ethnic staples that “extend beyond a fucking clam chowder,” Chef Eric says adamantly. Whether it’s Seattle’s own style of teriyaki, (famously served in Styrofoam to-go boxes) pho, one of the oldest Chinese restaurants in the entire country, or highlighting what immigrant farm hand make for dinner– SILVA will show you how our state’s cultural diversity impacts the food choices from tourists to the original settlers.