This is the hamachi at RockCreek. WANT.
  • Kelly O
  • This is the hamachi at RockCreek. WANT.

When Eric Donnelly opened RockCreek last summer, he had most recently created the menu and been the chef at Toulouse Petit—a Lower Queen Anne cousin of party-place Peso's that didn't spring to mind as a great Seattle restaurant. RockCreek's almost-all-seafood menu looked long, maybe too long, as in possibly not doing anything particularly well, and the preparations looked complicated, as in not trusting a great piece of fish to be its great self. The fact that RockCreek was offering "globally sourced" seafood was sort of courageous (carbon footprint be damned!), but also off-putting (carbon footprint be damned?). But after I wrote about where to find Seattle's best seafood a couple weeks ago—taking a holistic approach, from fish 'n' chips to sushi to oysters, including 20 different places—someone said, "What about RockCreek?" So I drove right over to Fremont to eat there. (The second time, as a feeble offset, I rode my bike.)

The first thing I ate at RockCreek was hamachi from Hawaii ($13)—a row of generous, palest pink slices, served quiveringly raw and cool and silky, with a sweet-and-tart Walla Walla vinaigrette, topped with crunchy miniature pickles and all resting on a deep green, minty-peppery shiso leaf. It tasted a little like rice vinegar, a little like sesame, but mostly just like great fish being its great self, in a perfect way for a warm evening....