Seattle Restaurants

Thanks to inventive chefs, first-rate local produce, adventurous diners, and a bold entrepreneurial spirit, Seattle has become one of the culinary capitals of the nation. Fearless young chefs have stepped in and raised the bar. Fresh and often foraged produce, local seafood, and imaginative techniques make the quality of local c
Thanks to inventive chefs, first-rate local produce, adventurous diners, and a bold entrepreneurial spirit, Seattle has become one of the culinary capitals of the nation. Fearless young chefs have stepped in and raised the bar. Fresh and often foraged produce, local sea
Thanks to inventive chefs, first-rate local produce, adventurous diners, and a bold entrepreneurial spirit, Seattle has

Thanks to inventive chefs, first-rate local produce, adventurous diners, and a bold entrepreneurial spirit, Seattle has become one of the culinary capitals of the nation. Fearless young chefs have stepped in and raised the bar. Fresh and often foraged produce, local seafood, and imaginative techniques make the quality of local cuisine even higher.

Seattle's dining scene has been stoked like a wildfire by culinary rock stars who compete on shows like Iron Chef, Top Chef, and regularly dominate "best of" lists. Seattle chefs have won big in the prestigious James Beard competition, with Renee Erickson of Bateau, Walrus and the Carpenter, and the Whale Wins taking the "Best Chef Northwest" title in 2016 and creative genius Edouardo Jordan named one of Food and Wine Magazine's "Best New Chefs." The city is particularly strong on new American, Japanese, and Vietnamese cuisines. Chefs continuously fine-tune what can best be called Pacific Northwest cuisine, which features fresh, local ingredients, including anything from nettles and mushrooms foraged in nearby forests; colorful berries, apples, and cherries grown by Washington State farmers; and outstanding seafood from the cold northern waters of the Pacific Ocean, like wild salmon, halibut, oysters, Dungeness crab, and geoduck. Seattle boasts quite a few outstanding bakeries, too, whose breads and desserts you'll see touted on many menus.

Seattle is also seeing a resurgence in American comfort food, often with a gourmet twist, as well as gastropub fare, which can mean anything from divine burgers on locally baked ciabatta rolls to grilled foie gras with brioche toast. But innovation still reigns supreme: local salmon cooked sous vide and accompanied with pickled kimchi or fresh-picked peas can be just as common as aspic spiked with sake and reindeer meat. Many menus feature fusion cuisine or pages of small-plate offerings, and even high-end chefs are dabbling in casual ventures like pop-up eateries or gourmet food trucks. Many, if not most, of the top chefs own their businesses as well, and in recent years they’ve spread their talents around, operating two or three complementary ventures (or, in Ethan Stowell’s case, more than a dozen and counting, while Tom Douglas has nearly 20, plus a cooking school and farm). The trend toward informality and simplicity particularly plays out when it comes to dessert; most neighborhoods boast branches of at least one of the city’s popular, independently owned cupcake, doughnut, or ice-cream shops. Regardless of the format or focus, one thing's for sure: chefs are highlighting their inventions with the top-notch ingredients that make Pacific Northwest cooking famous.

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  • 1. Altura

    $$$$ | Capitol Hill | Italian

    A hand-carved cedar angel statue watches over diners at this lively spot, where chef-owner Nathan Lockwood lends a Northwest focus to Italian...Read More

  • 2. Bar Melusine

    $$$$ | Capitol Hill | Seafood

    Renee Erickson, 2016 James Beard Award winner for best chef in the Northwest, takes inspiration from France’s Atlantic coast and transforms...Read More

  • 3. Café Juanita

    $$$$ | Italian

    There are so many ways for a pricey "destination restaurant" to go overboard, making itself nothing more than a special-occasion spectacle,...Read More

  • 4. Cafe Munir

    $$ | Ballard | Lebanese

    Perhaps the best-kept secret in the city, this neighborhood Lebanese joint is adorable and affordable. Whitewashed walls sparsely populated...Read More

  • 5. Cascina Spinasse

    $$$ | Capitol Hill | Italian

    Squeeze into this postage-stamp-size eatery with its cream-colored lace curtains and true Italian soul—and come hungry, because chef Stuart...Read More

  • 6. Coyle's Bakeshop

    $ | Greenwood | Bakery

    One of the city’s neighborhood charmers, this beloved bakery churns out the best of French, British, and American pastry traditions, as well...Read More

  • 7. Delancey

    $ | Ballard | Pizza

    Brandon Pettit spent years developing his thin-but-chewy pizza crust, and the final product has made him a contender for the city's best pies...Read More

  • 8. Dino's Tomato Pie

    $ | Capitol Hill | Pizza

    Long hailed as the creator of Seattle’s best pizza at his first shop, Delancey, Brandon Petit perhaps even improves on his previous recipe as...Read More

  • 9. Eden Hill

    $$$$ | Queen Anne | American

    This tiny, 24-seat restaurant quietly turns out some of the most exciting and innovative food in the city. With patterned wallpaper, a location...Read More

  • 10. Ellenos Real Greek Yogurt

    $ | Downtown | Fast Food

    When people walk by the Pike Place Market booth, they might think they’re passing a gelato stand from the artful display, but in fact Ellenos...Read More

  • 11. La Marzocco Cafe & Showroom

    $ | Lower Queen Anne | Café

    Though better known for making espresso machines than espresso, La Marzocco brings a sprawling open café, gorgeous light, and incredible coffee...Read More

  • 12. Lark

    $$$ | Capitol Hill | American

    The Central Agency Building, a converted 1917 warehouse with 25-foot ceilings, is the setting for mouthwateringly delicious small plates to...Read More

  • 13. Little Uncle

    $ | Madison Park | Thai

    On a busy arterial near the southeastern edge of Capitol Hill, this tiny storefront is small but mighty: its owners could work—and, in fact...Read More

  • 14. Ma'ono Fried Chicken & Whiskey

    $$ | West Seattle | American

    A quietly hip vibe pervades this culinary beacon in West Seattle, where the vast bar surrounds an open kitchen. Diners of all stripes relish...Read More

  • 15. Manolin

    $$$ | Fremont | Seafood

    Walking into the light-filled dining room of Manolin, with its horseshoe-shape bar framing the open kitchen, transports you straight to the...Read More

  • 16. Marination Ma Kai

    $ | West Seattle | American

    The best view of Downtown comes at a most affordable price: the brightly colored Adirondack chairs outside this Korean-Hawaiian fish shack offer...Read More

  • 17. Matt's in the Market

    $$$$ | Downtown | American

    One of the most beloved of Pike Place Market's restaurants, Matt's is now owned by Dan Bugge, who continues to value intimate dining, fresh...Read More

  • 18. Revel

    $ | Fremont | Asian

    Adventurous enough for the most committed gourmands but accessible enough to be a neighborhood lunchtime favorite, Revel starts with Korean...Read More

  • 19. Salumi Cured Meats

    $ | Pioneer Square | Italian

    The lines are long for hearty, unforgettable sandwiches filled with superior house-cured meats and all other sorts of goodies at this shoebox...Read More

  • 20. Staple & Fancy

    $$$ | Ballard | Italian

    The "Staple" side of this Ethan Stowell restaurant at the south end of Ballard Avenue might mean ethereal gnocchi served with corn and chanterelles...Read More

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