Macrina Bakery

You may be surprised—or even alarmed, as I was—to find pomegranate seeds in a box lunch. The most we could hope for as kids, after all, was a little box of raisins or an apple. But Macrina has a reputation to uphold, and just as the beloved bakery’s involvement in the box-lunch biz was easy to predict, so are the results: solid baked goods and mostly good everything else. The pomegranate seeds arrived on a galette (Macrina’s “free-form tart,” which changes daily) also laden with pear slices and pungent goat cheese. It’s part of the meze platter ($14), a rotating Mediterranean mini-smorgasbord; the feast continued with wild-rice salad—faintly sweet, nicely chewy—and a mixed-greens salad enlivened by tangy balsamic vinaigrette. The fish in the smoked-salmon Caesar salad ($13.50), translucent and thin-sliced, had an excellent flavor that got a bit lost in the pungent dressing. The salmon, roasted red peppers, and shaved cheese came in a clump, so we had to do some mixing—difficult in a small plastic container—to avoid too much strong flavor in a single bite. The roasted-vegetable ciabatta sandwich is overstuffed but unexciting, while the turkey ciabatta lacks the lip-smacking pesto that adds interest to the veggie version. Sandwich-based boxes come in three versions: “picnic” ($9.50) means sandwich, cookie, and soda; “business” ($12) adds a salad; and “fancy” ($13.50), which applies automatically to salads and the meze, tosses in a “gourmet sweet,” like a tartlet topped with fruit that tastes fresh off the tree. 2408 First Ave., 206-448-4089. BELLTOWN