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(edited to update/refresh with 2003 Graemlins
Cool This is almost a year old so check your local listings for times, availabilities and possible obsoleteness.)

Now I can see how one can get carried away with WHERE, wherever. I started with the tops and personal favorites, then worked my way down.

There are lots more, if anyone has any questions – ask away. There are no things to do/wine shops, etc., just food and wine. Will be happy to help with those on a case by case basis!

And NEVER carry an umbrella – none of the best people do.

DS= Downtown Seattle
PPM = Pike Place Market & nearby
NW = Northwest Cuisine (local vegetables, meats, seafood, style.)


Tom Douglas- Three Restaurants - all highly recommended, all downtown Seattle. This is the man who got me to eat beets.
Dahlia Lounge - Oo-la-la, seafood, NW, innovative, wine, Belltown chic, coconut cream pie.
Palace Café - loud (could be the monorail overhead), fun, funky, animated, coconut cream pie
Etta-s - PPM, north end of market, seafood, eclectic. Coconut cream pie.
Tom has a bakery adjacent to Dahlia L., where you can buy his - coconut cream pie.

Metropolitan Grill - DS. American, Serious steaks, NY character, great bar, great service, serious wine list, enticing happy hour, think Dean Martin. Australian lobster tail for $89 - stick to steaks.

Place Pigalle - PPM. French, NW, great view, wine, tucked back in the market, intimate, charming (great floor).

Queen City Grill - DS, Belltown. American, NW, bustling, wine, high-back dark booths, masculine, sexy, pretty people (is that Steve Winwood crooning-), high-energy, way-hip bar.

Ray's Boathouse - Ballard - Cliché but notable. NW, seafood, wine, waterfront, deck, sweeping views of Puget Sound and Olympics. Great for Ballard locks boat traffic and dazzling sunsets - the NW does those best, IMHO.

Rover's - Exquisite marathon meals, sticker-shock-excellent wine list. French, NW, seafood. Tucked away in Madison Valley in a charming cottage with lovely dining courtyard. Three prix-fixe menus de degustation, top-notch service. Artful and sublime. Chef Thierry rules.

Tulio Ristorante - DS, rustic Italian, comfortable, just plain nice. Tulio is in the Hotel Vintage Park. The HVP is a unique, Euro-style hotel. Each guestroom is named after a Washington winery. NW Wine tastings for guests every afternoon. Lovely. Romantic.

Georgian Room: DS, Olympic Four Seasons Hotel. Swank, special occasion, within is the Petit Georgian Room - ritzy private dining room. Stunning décor, elaborate breakfast, lunch and dinner. In the adjoining lounge: cigars, cocktails, guests and snooty locals (or wannabes) hang out, people watching. Further adjacent is the Garden Court, a massive greenhouse of giant trees. It's a beautiful, elegant jungle-like room for cocktails, light meals, and over-the-top martinis, fancy dancing on Saturday night. They do a daily High Tea, and do it proper.
Shuckers Restaurant - skip it. If you don't dine in this magnificent hotel, at least do a walk-through. It is Seattle's Grand Dame.

Herbfarm - Marathon "sensory overload" dining in Woodinville, stone's throw from Chateau St. Michele, Columbia Winery and Red Hook Brewery. This five-hour, nine-course gastronomical event features five Northwest wines, classical guitarists, die-for menus, and a visit with the restaurant's resident pot-bellied pig - who serves as the on-site recycling department. This is the Northwest's answer to the French Laundry. A once-in-a-lifetime experience. Pre-meal garden tours, Mt. Rainier sightings to the south and perusal of the 10,000-bottle wine cellar are highly entertaining. Two luxury overnight suites are available, as are plenty of rooms at the Willows Lodge across the courtyard. Herbfarm reservation are tricky, a la French Laundry - call, email, beg, borrow, steal.

Cascadia - NW, in Belltown. "Cascadia gets its inspiration strictly from foods and flavors indigenous to the region between the Cascade Mountains and the Pacific." Graceful and sophisticated, Limoges china, baby grand. "Unpretentious sommelier whose fairly priced wine list is largely culled from -Cascadia- -- the greater Northwest." Go with the tasting menu. Kerry Sear, former chef of The Georgian Room, really goes all out with his brilliantly creative, ever-changing, unique menus.

Restaurant Zoe - Belltown, tragically hip, fab cocktails, wine, think "Sex and The City," artisan bread, chic, "urban American bistros pays homage to pan-Mediterranean cuisine." The only place I'll drink a cocktail named "Lemon Drop." My favorite salad in Seattle: grilled romaine salad, whole hearts of romaine grilled and smoky, with bacon, apple and Roquefort dressing. Enticing wine list. I love this place!

Avenue One - DS, PPM, French, sexy, romantic, another former brothel (we like those), extensive wine list - not too French, though, cozy fireplace and view in back room. Happy-hour tapas-style bar specials, Best bet - $29 prix fixe dinner, 5-7 p.m. daily, then head over to one of Tom Douglas- joints for coconut cream pie.

Assaggio Ristorante - DS, Belltown, festive, Italian tratorria, nice wine list, traditional with a twist, pastas and seafood dishes, tiramisu. Make sure you meet Mauro.

Brasa - DS, Belltown, warm, creative Mediterranean, wine, has nice glow; extra-Spanish Wednesdays, 5 to 7pm, flamenco guitars, tapas. Happy Hour is 1/2 price off appetizers, which are like meals (did this the other day - wow)

Café Campagne - DS, PPM gem, French, NW, sensual, consistent, **Late-night light meals for $10 and under in the bar 10 p.m.-midnight nightly, French wine list; little sister casual Cafe Campagne is below on Post Alley.

Wild Ginger - DS, Pan-Asian, packed bar, wine, this place tripled in size with its move to 3rd Avenue, across from Benaroya Hall (symphony). It is massive, gorgeous, and worthy of your indulgence.

727 Pine - DS, "theatre" kitchen, casual chic, elegant, in Grand Elliott Hyatt, serious food, serious wine - -99 Leonetti Merlot by the glass - $35. For a new place, very impressive. Fell out of grace with the sommelier quickly, as I found several inaccuracies and typos on his list - okay now, though, he's history. Beware the wine list proofreader!

Canlis - Queen Anne, steaks, international, NW, great views, piano bar, special occasion, romantic, jackets "preferred," old-style Seattle (good thing), Geisha-girl style waitstaff - still works here.

El Gaucho - DS, Belltown, Steaks, funky cigar room complete with Archie Bunker-style armchairs, apres dinner and jazz at Pampas Room downstairs, massive-selection bar, check out wine wall in the private dining room. Owner Paul MacKay has been doing tuxedo worthy joints in Seattle for many, many years.

Flying Fish - DS, Belltown, seafood, people watching, action-packed, lots of fish flying around.

Kaspar's - NW, Seafood, lower Queen Anne, artistic menu, classy.

Lampreia - DS, Belltown, International, NW, truffles, duck, wine.

Waterfront - DS, waterfront, Pan-Asian, Seafood. The view is better than the food, IMHO. Very good wine selection, great bar and happy hour.

Sostanza Trattoria - Madrona/Madison Park, Tuscan- Italian, yummy, veal, quail, close to magnificent fare. Distinctive wine list, Italian, domestic.

Monsoon - Vietnamese, great wine list, stunning, innovative dishes. Traditional Viet-Northwest cuisine, huh-- yup. Capitol Hill

Icon Grill - DS, artsy-funky beyond the call of duty, fun-good food. Do lunch. Across from the Westin.

Fandango -DS, Belltown, "new Seattle (??)," Latin American, exotic, tapas. Think Ricky Ricardo on a good day.

Szmania's - Magnolia, Euro-Northwest, creative, big food, great wine. Far away and often forgotten.

Sazerac - DS, Seattle's attempt at New Orleans. Proprietor Jan Birmbaum (From NOLA) does the job as best can be done. Lively, winding bar. Located in the wild and wonderful Hotel Monaco (sister to Hotel Vintage Park).

Serafina - Eastlake area, lustrous, lusty and luscious (is that Sarah Vaughn crooning?). Jazz, wine, olives, pasta, veal, people wearing lots of black.

Cactus - Madrid meets Mexico meets Madison Park. Margaritas, locals. Exciting, loud and wonderful. Three-milk Cuban flan for dessert. Good wine store across the street, underground.

Café Flora -High-brow vegetarian. Portabello Wellington with mushroom-pecan pate and sauteed leeks encased in puff pastry with a Madeira wine sauce is a dish to die for. Located in Madison Valley, great for non-veg tagalongs (like me), aesthetically pleasing, stone floors, plants - no signs of tofu-heads or clove cigarettes. Over-the-top feng shui. Totally.

Café Juanita - N.Italian, located in Kirkland, eclectic, distinctive, white linen (is that Diana Krall crooning. Probably Norah Jones now), superb wine list. Pasta, things done to mushrooms considered obscene, lamb, rabbit, heaven. Way off the beaten Seattle path, but worth every kilometer.

Harvest Vine - Basque. Tapas. Madison Valley. I haven't been, shame on me, but everyone raves, not just the Spaniards. Great wines, I hear. (UPDATE: Have been since. Liked it okay. Didn't like that they wouldn't serve us plates of olive oil. A little too Basque for me.)

Dulces Latin Bistro - European bistro, located in Madrona, Latin jazz guitar, candlelight warm, chiles rellenos, prawns a la diabla, lamb, paella, wild boar, cigar lounge, great wine list.

Le Pichet - DS, PPM, French, tiny, clandestine meetings, wine, tres hip, dinner. Great hats on the dames. Men with berets. Or so it feels.

Lush Life - DS, Belltown, lush and lively. Tiny, intimate, tres-tres hip, wine, dinner, hush-hush conversations, illicit affair-ambience.

Painted Table - DS, fancy painted plates for sale, excellent cuisine, NW, wine, in Alexis Hotel. Chef just left for NY however.

Marcos Supper Club - DS, Belltown, Dark and handsome, great bistro food, wine, lots of funk. Good people watching or you can watch and snicker at the upper crust entering El Gaucho across the street.

Earth & Ocean - DS, French, slick, in W Hotel, savvy, urban, stylish, fixed-price menu offered, clever and smart creations, defines Northwest cuisine best. Food & Wine best chef -00. Good, good stuff.

Il Bistro - DS, PPM, secret, Italian, worth persuing. Great lobster dishes, believe it or not.

The Pink Door - DS, PPM, wacky, unbridled Italian with a great water view, eclectic bar, live music, dining deck, tarot card reader on
Thursday (still there I hope). Look for the pink door across from Kells.

Kell-s - DS, PPM, Best Irish food, best beer, insane Irish music and dancing through the wee hours. Genuine Irish everything. Kidney pie, the works. Across from the Pink Door, no green door.

El Puerco Lloron - PPM, best quick, real Mexican lunch stop at market. Seattle meets Tijuana, counter service, cerveza. Beans done right.

Bizarro – King's favorite lasagne, except for mine. Way away in Wallingford, it's a secret, local, twilight zone favorite. IT'S BIZARRO.

Il Terazzo Carmine - DS, Pioneer Square, unsung hero, hidden, confident standby and old-time favorite for savory Italian fare. If I see another bottle of old Leonetti pass me by to the next table- I'm diving.

Luigi's Grotto - DS, Pioneer Square, down and dirty, literally underground, genuine Italian. Spotting Luigi is more than fun spotting Waldo.

Al Boccalino - DS, Pioneer Square, one more old brothel turned good girl. Italian, a la Tony Soprano. In Seattle mini "Flat Iron" building.

Matts In The Market - DS, PPM - Just go.

Salvatore's - University District. Very honorable, personal mention. Italian, obviously. Long dinners, big laughs, wine.

Spanish Table - DS, PPM, good quick lunch bites, cheap. Retail Spanish goods.

Typhoon - DS, PPM, GREAT Thai in old Wild Ginger Spot. Do a slew of appetizers with wine.

Outer Limits Honorable Mentions:

Inn At Langley - Ferry ride away on Whidbey Island. Check it out if you're over there. Reservations. Spectacular food and wine.

Salish Lodge - Snoqualmie. STILL worth it. Hot tubs over waterfalls. What more could you want- Wine & exquisite dining.


[This message was edited by Queen Of Hearts on May 27, 2003 at 04:52 PM.]
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I know this is a bit off topic so I apologize to the purists in advance.

I am considering taking the Amtrack from San Diego to Seattle in late April and would appreciate a hotel reccomendation. I will not be spending too much time in town (2-3 nights) before heading to Vancouver.

I am interested in clean, somewhat affordable and located near the train station.

Any reccomendations?

The Westin is nice, but nothing downtown is extremely affordable. Some good deals to be had during this bad economy, though. Anything downtown is close to the train station. A nice walk in decent weather, bus is free downtown, but with luggage you would want a ride. The Edgewater is, of course, at the edge of the water, & would be my first choice. They would probably pick you up, or a short taxi ride. I'd research on internet.
That ought to be a nice train ride. I've done it only from Eugene once.
Mr. Winetex and I were married at the Edgewater so we're kind of biased. It is in the medium price range and the only hotel in Seattle on Elliot Bay. It is ON Elliot Bay and famous for when members of Led Zeppelin fished from their rooms and were reprimanded by management. There are signs in the rooms "Don't fish from the balcony". Very cool.

Otherwise there are a couple of Marriott suites and others that are OK deals just out of downtown by Lake Union. As Blobby says check the Internet and you can find the deals.
GA -

There are lots of reasonably priced hotels in downtown Seattle.

There is one I would recommend that is near the train station, affordable, elegant and historic.

"Seattle Hotel: A restored turn-of-the-century boutique hotel located in the heart of Seattle's
downtown waterfront historical district, Pioneer Square, that will take you back to a bygone era of style, grace and comfort."

I've seen the renovation, it's very charming. You'd be within walking distance of everything - train station, Pike Place Market, CBD, waterfront - take a ferry ride, SAFECO Field (Check Mariners schedule) and Pioneer Square. Seattle's "free" bus zone starts right near the hotel and goes all the way to Seattle Center (Space Needle). It is the best mode of transportation I've ever seen in a city -and it's FREE.

This hotel is a Best Western, but you'd never know it. So it must be reasonably priced.

The Edgewater has actually gotten pricey, but it is very nice.

Have fun!

Allow me to also recommend a new Seattle restaurant - Oceanaire - it's on 7th and Olive. It serves up huge portions of perfectly prepared fresh seafood from all over the world (flown in daily I understand) and has a wine list to drool over. The Captain's wine list includes such fun things as verticals of Mondavi Reserve Cabs, etc.. One of my favorite places is Tangos on Capital Hill. They have a great tapas menu, inexpensive but tasty Spanish wines and a killer dessert called El Diablo which is a chocolate truffle big enough for four with carmel sauce and Italian meringue - *awesome*! They recommend some lovely Ports to accompany. Seattle has lots and lots of wonderful places to eat, drink and party. You can do the msn city finder thing for Seattle and get something of an idea of the variety.
TJ - you been busy!


I normally stay at the Woodmark Hotel in Kirkland when I'm in Seattle. An easy cab ride to downtown Seattle and very picturesque. They have a fab spa.

Their Waters bistro has a Winemaker's Dinner periodically. The next one is Tuesday, 30 Jul, with St. Supéry Vineyards winemaker,
Michael Beaulac.

[ 07-27-2002, 12:01 PM: Message edited by: LilacWine ]
Post Soiree Dining notes...

My wife and I scored 2 for 2 in dining while in the Seattle area for the Soiree.

*3rd Floor Fish Cafe in Kirkland
Great seafood, and obviously a popular spot, we were very lucky to get a table without a reservation ; the wife had Soft-shelled Crab as an appy, while I had calamarie(sp?)...for the main dish the wife had a lightly curried seafood stirfry with noodles, and I had the halibut, all prepared perfectly.
Wonderful sunset view of Lake Washington. Service was perfect...
Damn, I can't remember the chard we had...I think a simple Ch. Ste. Michelle? But it worked.

*Mama's Mexican Kitchen in Belltown
We started by having smoked salmon bought at the Pike's market as an appy, then marched up the hill to this cafe.
This 2nd ave. cafe was a fun casual 'HotSpot' that was a crowded, loud, energetic eatery with some of the best mexican food we've had (just have to order a side of black beans), and cheap!
We got swept up in the energy of this place, a whole bunch of people (including the servers) having a great time.
I had good old fashion US beer, and the wife had more than a couple of house margaritas'.
Don't go here if your looking for a quiet romantic meal, but if you want laughter and simple, good mexican food cheap...we recommend it.
The Soiree crowd would have put this place on its' ear!
For a great long weekend in Seattle, try this:

Fly in on Thursday. Eat at Dahlia Lounge (I missed this part of the itinerary). Drink a few Martinelli's.

Get up Friday morning. Drive to Sunrise, at Mt. Rainier. Drink a few bottles of white wine (pairs nicely with chicken sandwiches and fresh air!) in the snack bar, then take a few-mile hike.

Return to Seattle. Dine at Wild Ginger. Drink a few bottles of Reisling and Gewurztraminer.

Get going Saturday. See the town. Eat at Elliot's Oyster House, run by the same company as the Met Grill. Drink BEER, to save yourself for the impending evening.

Go to a wine tasting at Pike & Western. Drink wine (DUHHH!).

Go directly from there to the Metropolitan Grill. Get a big steak and drink wine ... LOTS of wine.

Sunday, take a leisurely morning to charge your batteries. Rent a room at a hotel near a winery (the Wyndham in Bothell, for instance). Refresh yourself by the hotel pool by enjoying ... wine. maybe a cigar, too, but DEFINITELY wine. Maybe a Kistler Vine Hill would work.

Head from here to a winery that you have taken over for the evening. Have more wine on hand then could possibly be consumed by even twice as many people ... then proceed to kill nearly every bottle, even if it means working on them 'til sunrise.

Arise, refreshed, on Monday to go to work.

WOW [Eek!] , no wonder the King & Queen arranged this on Labor Day weekend. The only impossible step was the last one! [Big Grin]

When you look at the schedule, it almost seems like all you would be doing all weekend would be drinking wine. But notice that some decent restaurants and a bit of excercise are thrown in to break up the "monotony".

Enjoy this pre-packaged itinerary, complements of your Seattle-Swilling friends.
I really enjoyed my Quiznos sub for breakfast on Monday at the Esso Station [Wink] - along with the house blend from the nearby Starbucks !
The Vivanda Restaurant had great pasta, right across from Pike Market. The Tagliatelle with crab in a vodka citrus sauce and fresh asparagus was an excellent choice!
I always enjoy Salty's Sunday Buffets - 27$ is more than worth all the fresh seafood!
I ride the bus into Seattle quite a bit, & when I do like to read the 2 free "alternative" newspapers, Seattle Weekly ( & The Stranger ( They take a lot of jabs at each other, of course. The Stranger tends to me a bit more radical, homosexual, & probably more interesting; SW often more informative & accurate(?).

This week's SW was especially interesting, with lots of summer activity guidance, such as this:
I'll probably park & ride the bike to Taste Woodinville Monday, unless it turns out to be nasty weather. I suspect that each food & wine costs more than 1 ticket, probably 2-4.
I was surprised to not find Folklife Festival featured in The Stranger-- Confused

There are other threads related to this, which I find are easiest found by searching for "Campagne" (a restaurant.)

Then there are:

I've only been once, but loved it. I think I had the filet mignon, which is pretty usual for me. I don't remember the name of the salad, but it had pears in it, & was awesome. Maybe that's what Queen was talking about.
They like to give tours, so maybe you can get one after dinner.

I don't eat fish tacos, but the chicken katsu at Arbor Deli (by Seattle Cellars in Belltown) is now my favorite lunch. Unfortunately, I'm not working near there anymore. Frown
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Just got back from a trip to the Northwest with the wife and friends, to include Seattle. Absolutely loved it!

May I recommend dinner at Sostanza, which we thoroughly enjoyed after a recommendation from a friend. What works out perfectly is that you can begin your evening right across the street at Impromptu Wine and Art Bar. They have an excellent selection and if you get to, talk to Kyle, the co-owner. He is one of the greatest guys you will ever meet, and his knowledge of wine is unparalleled.

Don't miss either!

Cheers, and Hook'em Horns !!
Wife & her friend go to Daniel's in Bellevue fairly often when shopping, for bar food & drinks, mostly some kind of artichoke (heart?) appetizer (deep fried?).
We had our annual instead-of-Christmas-gifts dinner at the Leschi Daniel's a couple years ago with 2 other couples. It was good enough, but I recall the scallop appetizer was a waste of money, & I erred in getting some kind of boozy sauce on my steak. EekRed Face The wine was fairly reasonable. I read one review about them over-salting the steaks, but don't know personally about that, & one of the other couples goes there regularly.
If you are willing to take a little more of a drive after Quilceda, about 20-30 minutes north on the main interstate highway (the winery is about 5-10 minutes off this) is a little town called mount vernon. There is a really nice little restaurant/bakery called the calico cupboard. Great soups and sandwiches.

If you wanted to head back to woodinville, the maltby cafe is somewhere on those backroads I believe (I could check to make sure). I have no idea about their lunches, but breakfast there has a cult following.

Otherwise I can't say I really know that area very well..

A real long shot would be to drive up to laConner, a beautiful town on the water. I am sure there are some good places to eat there.

When will I learn?
The answers to life's problems aren't at
the bottom of a bottle! They're on TV!
- Homer Simpson

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