A place where everybody knows the Gibsons’ names

AIs your tummy full? Hope your turkey day was wonderful. I’m certain Forest and Mary Louise Gibson shared a delicious meal with family and friends.

Don’t be surprised, however, if leftovers aren’t on the menu today.

The couple might be adding to their unique claim to fame. The Gibsons, both 84, recently ate their 500th meal at The Georgian at Four Seasons Olympic Hotel in Seattle.

I don’t think I’ve been to Denny’s that many times.

Through all 500 trips to the same restaurant, they never got a baked potato.

Oven-heated spuds aren’t on the menu at the swank hotel. You can call ahead and get one prepared, though. That sort of attention to diners’ preferences has kept Forest and Mary Louise Gibson returning perhaps twice some weeks for dinner for more than a decade.

They usually spend at least $100 for the meal and tip.

“They’ve known us quite a while,” Mary Louise Gibson said. “Everybody there is so nice, kind and thoughtful.”

Like Norm and Cliff on “Cheers,” you could say everybody at The Georgian knows the Gibsons’ names.

Chef Patrick Dore often greets the couple when they are seated.

“He makes us feel so special,” Mary Louise Gibson said. “He knows our likes and dislikes.”

They often let Dore choose the evening’s meal. The couple both like fish. They often begin with cavier, or Oysters Rockefeller, both prepared to perfection, they said.

Sometimes they shop in Seattle before they eat. If they are simply going to dinner, they time potential traffic jams from their gorgeous Mill Creek home. They know how to maneuver around a Seattle Mariners’ rush or after-work bottlenecks.

It’s no problem to wait until 7 p.m. to make the drive south.

They spend their retirement time in harmony. Mrs. Gibson taught kindergarten. Mr. Gibson stayed in the Army after World War II and worked in Iran and Korea. He taught math at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and worked for the space program in California.

They both grew up in Seattle and built a home on Whidbey Island after retirement.

“Our first visit to The Georgian was probably after a shopping trip to Seattle,” Forest Gibson said. “We’d shop, then meet at the Olympic. We did it pretty regularly, at least once a week. Or we’d be on Whidbey, get in our car, and go to the Olympic.”

The hotel gave them a free room on their 500th visit. The Gibson’s 9-year-old Kerry Blue Terrier, Pegeen, a former top show dog, also spent the night.

“There was a little tray in the room with dog dishes and bottled water,” Mrs. Gibson said. “We always take Pegeen. It’s nice because you can drive your car right in there. They always park it where they can see her.”

The also have dined at Hunt Club Restaurant at the Sorrento Hotel in Seattle. Out of town, they recommend C’est Si Bon in Port Angeles or in Vancouver, Five Sails Restaurant at the Pan Pacific Hotel or William Tell Restaurant at The Georgian Court Hotel.

The couple, married for 59 years, do get take-out in Mill Creek from Azteca Mexican Restaurant.

Forest Gibson discovered the extent of their Seattle meals by checking credit card statements. He said he was surprised to see it all add up.

The beauty of each meal isn’t reflected in a list of tabs. They usually start with a Caesar salad. Hors d’oeuvres might include lobster, crab or truffles.

“Everything is quality,” Mrs. Gibson said. “Everyone is dressed like they are going out to dinner. It’s nice to look around and see people with good manners. The waiters are all so polished.”

They might end the repast with cheese or fruit. Sometimes they slice a Grand Marnier souffle. There are also potato rolls, chiabata or a raisin/nut loaf.

I guess you wouldn’t need a baked potato with that sort of spread. Alisa Martinez, director of public relations for the Four Seasons Olympic, assured me the chef would prepare a baked potato if I called ahead.

It sounds like a Georgian dinner would please the palate on a first or 500th visit.

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