Filos on Issaquah Creek offers primo pizza, pasta

November 20, 2012

By David Hayes

About 30 years ago, Leif Moi helped open a Jay Berry’s restaurant on Northwest Gilman Boulevard, offering dining along Issaquah Creek.

After a lengthy hiatus from the business, Moi has returned to Issaquah with his second Filos restaurant — his first in Redmond and his second, Filos on Issaquah Creek, located along the same bend in the waterway as the long-departed Jay Berry’s.

Filos comes to an Issaquah already rife with pizza-pasta joints in a space not renowned for maintaining long-term tenants — Field of Champions and Tiger Mountain Grill already gave the location a go.

If you go

Filos on Issaquah Creek

  • 385 N.W. Gilman Blvd.
  • 391-7111
  • 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday
  • 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday
  • 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday
  • Appetizers: $2.99 to $6.99
  • Entrees: $10.99 to $15.59
  • Pizzas: $11:99 to $24
Restaurant reviews are a regular feature of The Issaquah Press. Reviewers visit restaurants unannounced and pay in full for their meals.

To stand apart from existing hot spots, the menu has got to feature something the others don’t. What Filos has is an abundance of fresh ingredients combined to make some of the most satisfying bites I’ve had in a while.

For my first meal, I went for a meatball grinder. Freshly baked bread, meatballs Grandma could have made and a house-made meat sauce that glued it all together makes for one fine sandwich. Another staple of how well-rounded a gourmet pizza joint is how well it executes a salad. The Caesar was delivered with fresh romaine lettuce, perfectly grilled chicken and just the right mix of crisp bacon, grated Parmesan cheese and homemade croutons tossed together.

The lettuce wraps were a delightful take on a traditionally Asian cuisine — just substitute ginger-infused ground beef with Grandma’s meatballs and you’ve got a hit.

Which brings us to the star of the show, the pizza. It’s available in three sizes. We settled on the medium, perfect for two. And being anyone can make a good red sauce, we went for white, choosing The Crusader. The chicken, sausage, red onion, sweet basil and Romano and Parmesan cheese would have been enough to satisfy my tastebuds. But throw in garlic, some roasted, and it’s a tour de force through Flavortown. I love a chef unafraid to let the flavor of garlic shine through.

With many pasta dishes to choose, from fettuccini to ravioli, and even options to build your own combinations, the menu is chock full of reasons for return trips.

The only potential problem, depending on the size of your pocket book, is affordability. This good a selection comes with a price — a calzone, albeit a very nicely sized one — will set you back $15.59 and there’s not a pasta dish under $13.99. Appetizers, on the other hand, aren’t as steep, as they average about $5.99.

The lunchtime crowd has yet to catch on at Filos, so it will be no problem to get creekside dinning. Also, be sure to check out the live jazz and bluegrass music on Friday nights from 6:30-8:30 p.m.

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