Visitors from out of town and even friends from the area who are exploring Seattle's gastronomic goodness have been bugging my main squeeze and I for our "favorites" list... which we somehow just didn't have much time to put together... or maybe we couldn't really narrow it down. However, when an opportunity to share a few bites in Seattle with Taylor Sterling, Founder and Creative Director of my favorite online magazine Glitter Guide came up.. it was the final push to put it all in writing. (Hope you have a blast in the Emerald City, Taylor!)
So here it is, for you and your soon-to-be-happy tummies.
Note to out-of-town guests, this list is categorized by Seattle neighborhoods. In addition to listing the restaurant, I've named my "must-have" bite when trying it out.
bastille | 5307 Ballard Avenue NW
Roasted pork belly with figs
walrus and the carpenter | 4743 Ballard Ave NW
A dozen of oysters, fried oysters with cilantro aioli and steak tartare
revel | 403 N 36th St.
Roasted duck, smoked tea noodle, pickled raisin, duck crackling and the pork belly with kimchi pancake
paseos | 4225 Fremont Ave N
Caribbean roast sandwich *warning: it's messy, but oh so delicious. The lines get really crowded so call and order ahead.
oddfellows cafe | 1525 10th Ave
Everything... I've never had a bad meal here.
la spiga | 1429 12th Avenue
Lasagne Verdi (handmade spinach lasagna with ragu) or the Parpadelle Con Ragu Di Coniglio (parpadelle with braised rabbit ragu)
barrio | 1420 12th Avenue
Tingo de pollo tacos, Guajillo Pork enchiladas and Braised Brisket Quesadilla
plum bistro | 1429 12th Ave
For my vegan friends, here is a mecca of delicious tasties. The best: oyster mushroom fettuccine.
skillet | 1400 East Union Street
Famous for their bacon jam... get the burger loaded with bacon jam, creamy bleu cheese and arugula
south lake union.
brave horse tavern | 310 Terry Avenue North
Handmade pretzels with the pimento cheddar cheese dip. On Sundays, go for their pickle brined fried chicken dinner.
portage bay cafe | 391 Terry Ave North
The most crowded brunch spot but with amazing brioche French toast and scrambles... all made from scratch and local, organic fare. Don't miss out on their infamous toppings bar.
belltown / downtown.
tavolata | 2323 Second Avenue
My first "big date night" spot with the main squeeze for his birthday. Never disappointed.. always leave more than satisfied. Love the smoked fish bruschetta to start, and obsessed with their Gnocchi Alla Romana. Rigatoni is a classic, and exquisite there.
black bottle | 2600 1st Avenue
Seven Spice Shrimp, Blasted Broccoli and Grilled Octopus with Fava Bean Salad. Broccoli has always been downplayed at restaurants... but trust me, they give this green underdog its shining glory moment.
local 360 | 2234 1st Ave (between Bell and Blanchard)
What's not to love? Food sourced within a 360-mile radius from the restaurant - ensuring the freshest ingredients while supporting local farmers and the community. Also, how could you not resist trying their delicious PB&J bons bons.
umi sake house | 2230 First Ave
Hands down... my fav in Seattle. Extra points for swanky-ness and tasty apps. Get a few of their specialty rolls: Samurai Spirit and Street Fighter.. and pair with a Cucumber Daiquiri. For a more traditional sushi spot, visit Shiros (a few blocks up towards 2nd Ave).. the line is long, but oh hey.. the chef was trained by Jiro.
lola | 2000 4th Ave
Kebabs... get the lamb, or for my veggie friends.. the haloumi cheese with fig combo is divine.
serious pie | 316 Virginia
Roasted seasonal mushrooms, truffle cheese pizza or the Yukon gold potato, rosemary, pecorino. Either way, this is like no other pizza experience you'd had before. T. Douglas is the man.
spur | 113 Blanchard Street
Sockeye salmon crostini, Goat cheese Gnudi and the butternut squash dessert... Note: dishes are seasonal... venture and try the recos of the night.
le pichet | 1933 1st Avenue
Can't resist the duck liver terrine... my main squeeze loves the Eufs plats jambon et fromage aka broiled eggs with ham and smothered in Gruyere.
seatown | 2010 Western Ave
Even Anthony Bourdain couldn't resist this other famous T. Douglas spot... fried egg sandwich with avocado, Beecher's cheese and Dungeness crab.
cafe campagne | 1600 Post Alley
Some say it's a tourist trap being in the heart of Pike's Place Market.. but if you're a local, scout a table early around 9:30 a.m. and enjoy one of my favorite breakfasts: oeufs en meurette - poached eggs with a sauce of pearl onions, bacon and mushrooms in a red wine sauce, foie gras sauce and served with fries.
din tai fung | 700 Bellevue Way NE #280
With only a few in the US, Seattle is lucky to cater one of the amazing, authentic Taiwanese dumpling houses... and soon to house two locations (Bellevue and University District). Absolutely obsessed with the shrimp and pork shu mai dumplings, but also highly recommend the spicy shrimp and pork wonton soup.
To my Seattleites, which of these are on your must-eat list?
If you have any other recos, feel free to share in comments below.