A crisp Pacific breeze floats over Coho Cafe's patios, fanning guests as they sip signature cocktails and deconstruct towers of dungeness crab and avocado. It's as if the ocean wants to give each coastal location a big old pat on the back?and why wouldn't it? The chefs have surely earned it through their tireless commitment to quality Northwestern seafood, expressed in creative combinations such as cod tacos topped with three-bean chili and smoked-salmon fettuccine with dill-sorrel cream.
On cooler days, large rock fireplaces send their warmth through casual dining rooms defined by tropical colors, curved walls that undulate like mountain streams, and fish statues. A glance at the tables on any given night reveals everything from stuffed, roasted chicken to a classic New York steak in addition to the seafood?which still isn't enough variety for the chefs. The specials menu sports new dishes every two weeks to make use of seasonal ingredients and flavors. To pair with them, friendly servers can offer guidance in selecting among the wine list's variety of Northwestern and imported bottles.
When people are ill, they usually either make a doctor's appointment or lie in bed and wait it out. Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy has created a third option. Visits to its stores, which are scattered across the western US, are more casual than a doctor's visit but less passive than bed rest. Each location's team of health experts, including credentialed pharmacists, naturopathic doctors, herbalists, nutritionists, and more, consult with customers?no appointment needed.
But Pharmaca aims to serve its customers every day, not just on sick days. Its stores have been drawing droves of clients since 2000, partly because they meet so many needs in just one spot. In addition to a full-service pharmacy, Pharmaca offers organic and food-based vitamins from MegaFood and New Chapter; professional-grade skin care and cosmetics from Jane Iredale, Sanitas, and Dr. Hauschka; and therapeutic-grade supplements from Metagenics and Thorne Research. Customers can also choose from an assortment of homeopathic remedies, herbal formulations, medical supplies, toiletries, gifts, and fair-trade chocolates.
The fajitas alone are worth the trip to Agave Cocina & Cantina. Chefs start with sizzling meat, seafood, or veggies, adding sauteed peppers, beer-braised black beans, sweet yellow onions, and guacamole. Those ingredients all come together on warm, house-made tortillas, which are fresher and less likely to get rained on than backyard-made tortillas. Elsewhere on the menu you'll find signature dishes including prawn and scallop enchildas, chile rellenos with three cheeses, and tamales stuffed with beef and pickled red onion.
In addition to its food, Agave boasts more than 150 premium and hard-to-find tequilas. These tequilas turn up in hand-shaken drinks such as the margarita botanica, a blend of fresh lime juice, basil, chartreuse, and agave nectar. Diners can also opt for a tequila flight to taste test multiple kinds in one sitting.
Sassafras, sarsaparilla, and vanilla: above all, these are the flavors celebrated by The Root Beer Store, which is chock-full of root beers from around the country. Owner Corey Anderson grew up making root beer with his dad, generating his admiration for root-beer culture. Anderson was featured on King 5 for his passion for the soft drink, which manifests in his selection of more than 100 types from craft root-beer makers. From Hawaii to Maine to Australia, the creativity of each brewer shines in the collection, which customers browse with visions of ice cubes and ice cream to accompany them. The staff is on hand to help home brewers make their own soda with root-beer kits, extracts from different brewers, and the lyrics to the chant sung to the root-beer lord before starting each batch.
Not much has changed since Lovie Yancey opened the first Fatburger in 1952. Since then, the chain has expanded, but the food has stayed the same: 100% USDA lean beef burgers grilled to order and hand-scooped ice-cream shakes. Each restaurant stays true to Yancey's vision, even down to retro-influenced digs with jukeboxes blasting old school favorites designed to make listeners flash enthusiastic thumbs-up signs. Inside the kitchen, cooks stack burgers from 2.5-ounce burgers to 24-ounce triple burgers on toasted regular or gluten-free buns as fresh onions crisp inside fryers filled with cholesterol-free oil. Diners can also enjoy Fatburger’s signature chili made with a secret blend of herbs and spices or milkshakes topped with dollops of whipped cream that resemble fluffy, white clouds shaped like marshmallows.
The perfumes of curry spices permeate the air at Tandoori Fire Bar & Grill along with the lilting sounds of Indian music. Chef Alex, who according to the staff was named 1 of Seattle’s top 10 chefs by Seattle Times food critics, earned his chops in Greece before sharpening his Indian-fare skills in California, where he opened the original location of Tandoori Fire Bar & Grill in 2004. His menu includes classic Indian dishes such as curried mussels, as well as fusion plates of murg-bahar-battered calamari and tandoori-chicken-alfredo pasta.