Where to Sit: Ask for a seat near the open kitchen if you want to pick up tips from Chef Zach Chambers, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. From his humble beginnings as a dishwasher, Chef Chambers eventually went on to cook at the American Academy in Rome and Belltown’s Tavoláta before taking the Executive Chef position at Anchovies and Olives.
When to Go: The restaurant occasionally plans special events, such as the Earth Day dinner made with sustainable and locally sourced food. Or diners can sip wine and slurp oysters with their sweethearts on Valentine's Day—Anchovies and Olives was named one of the city's top Valentine's restaurants by Gayot. But you don't have to wait for a special occasion to visit A&O—Oyster Power Hour is Sunday–Thursday. On those days, from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. and again from 10 p.m. until closing time, the oyster of the day is just $1, and there are drink specials as well.
Crudo: Italian for "raw." It’s often used when referring to uncooked meat or seafood.
While You're in the Neighborhood
Before: Pamper yourself before dinner with a mani-pedi or massage at Polished Boutique Spa (1422 E Pine Street).
After: Get dessert at Old School Frozen Custard, which offers specialty frozen-custard flavors like Almond Joy or apple strudel. (1316 E Pike Street).
If You Can’t Make It, Try This: Chef Zach Chambers also heads the kitchen at sister restaurant and pizzeria Bar Cotta (1546 15th Avenue), located next door.
Where to Sit: If you want tableside service and great views, sit in the second floor's dining room. You'll either get an eyeful of the Olympic Mountains, Puget Sound, and the Port of Seattle, or you’ll peer out over Pike Place Market. On the first and third floors at Lowell's, customers order at the counter.
When to Go: Lowell's serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as bar drinks. However, it stops serving dinner most nights at 6 p.m., so plan an early-bird supper if you want an evening meal.
While You’re in the Neighborhood
Eat a Late Dinner: If Lowell's closes too early for your appetite, head there for pre-dinner drinks and then go out for seasonal French food at Place Pigalle (81 Pike Street), called a "hidden gem," by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
Laugh the Night Away: Improv teams compete against each other at Unexpected Productions (1428 Post Alley), which also puts on other comedy shows.
Catch Some Live Music: The Showbox (1426 First Avenue) hosts acts like Black Flag, Guided by Voices, and Mark Lanegan.
For dinner: a few Pacific Northwest oysters—served with mignonette—followed by Cuban Pete’s Shipwreck—a spicy skillet with clams, mussels, finfish, chicken, chorizo, veggies, and Bijol rice When to Go: Breakfast or brunch, when a locally sourced menu of omelets, scrambles, and pancakes takes the spotlight.
Mignonette: a sauce usually made of shallots, cracked pepper, and vinegar that’s often served over raw oysters.
Bijol condiment: a powdered mix of corn flour, annatto, ground cumin, and color that’s often used to flavor rice in Cuban-style dishes.
While You’re in the Neighborhood: Browse the racks of books and self-proclaimed “geeky gifts” at Ada’s Technical Books and Café (425 15th Avenue E).
Where to Sit: The sophisticated boathouse serves upscale seafood and steak, and the more casual café, located on the restaurant's top deck, also plates sandwiches and pasta. But breathtaking views can be found in both locations. For views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains, sit at the boathouse's 30-foot bar or the open-air café.
When to Go: Daily happy hour takes place from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at both the boathouse and the café, and again at the café from 9 p.m. until closing. Whenever you go, don't worry about parking—it's free, and there's even complimentary valet during peak hours.
The Cocktails: In the boathouse you might order a Honey Bee—gin, St. Germain, honey, bitters, and an edible blossom, whereas the café serves straight up and frozen specialties, like the Lemon Refresher—Limoncello, Cointreau, house sours, and lemonade.
Seasonal Seafood | Aged Steaks | Strong Drinks | Business Lunch | Hearty Happy Hour
When to Go: Visit during happy hour (3 p.m.–6 p.m. weekdays, 4 p.m.–6 p.m. weekends) to sample a reasonably priced range of the kitchen’s specialties, including a beloved cheeseburger that’s otherwise confined to the lunch menu.
While You Wait: Decide where to vacation next by blindly pointing at the menu—the sources of its seafood, dairy, and produce are meticulously cited and range from Sitka, Alaska, to nearby Whidbey Island.
Mahi-mahi: a finned fish, also called a dorado or dolphinfish, known for its light-pink meat and delicate, almost-sweet flavor. Its Hawaiian name translates to “very strong,” referring not to its flavor but its size.
Salsa cruda: Italy’s answer to pico de gallo, made with fresh, raw tomatoes and often ingredients such as basil, parsley, and parmesan.
While You’re in the Neighborhood
Before: Watch the afternoon wind down from the giant windows of the 40th-floor Starbucks inside the Columbia Center (701 5th Avenue), a low-key alternative to the popular 73rd-floor observation deck.
After: Soak up some more old-fashioned hospitality and the glow of a giant bear lamp while sipping a nightcap at The Arctic Club’s Polar Bar (700 3rd Avenue).
Sunlight streams in through the large windows that separate the frenzy of the Pike Place Market from the calming interior of Etta’s. Inspired by its proximity to the sea and comment cards filled out by area pelicans, the cozy bistro offers a variety of upscale seafood dishes for both dinner and brunch. Dungeness crab cakes grace both menus: in the morning they arrive on house-made english muffins topped with spinach and crab-butter hollandaise, while at night they’re paired with a wheatberry salad––perfect after an appetizer of tuna sashimi or steamed manila clams. Another brunch-dinner crossover is the grilled wild coho salmon, which is served with green beans and cornbread pudding, and flavored with Etta’s specialty “rub with love” spice rub, a product so popular it now can be found on specialty store shelves across the country.