When to Go
What to Wear: Although Frommer’s calls The Georgian “the most traditional and formal restaurant in the city,” the dress code is “smart casual,” meaning no jackets are required.
Inside Tip: Splurge on the five-course prix-fixe meal with handpicked wine pairings; it usually features fresh seafood and seasonal specialties.
Celeriac: a root vegetable that tastes similar to celery. It’s also known as turnip-rooted celery or knob celery.
Foie gras: the fatty liver from a goose or duck that's been force-fed. The liver is then marinated in a mixture of alcohols and seasonings, and is typically baked.
Business diners and out-on-the-towners look to The Capital Grille steakhouse for luxe food in a stylish setting. The beef is top-notch, with an array of popular cuts, including Delmonico and dry-aged porterhouse. Non-beef lovers can revel in thick lamb chops, wild salmon, oysters and lobster, and there’s a wine list full of Northwest bottles to complement your meal. The Capital Grille’s location inside the 1910 Cobb Building, a Beaux-Arts treasure and national historical landmark, makes the room feel like a true Northwestern gem: sophisticated and dim, with dark woods, interesting fixtures and posh upholstery. But a close look at the art adorning the walls brings many happy surprises; those formal portraits on the wall are of local Seattle celebrities like Jimi Hendrix and martial arts star Bruce Lee.
A glowing, crimson wall accentuates the industrial-chic interior of the Vessel, casting a rosy sheen across the abundant chrome finishes. The bar is rather simple in design—long, wooden, and abutted by plain black stools—yet the mixing that goes on behind it is as elaborate as a teenager’s explanation for missing curfew. A rotating staff of 25 bartenders, in addition to frequent guest mixologists, carefully shake and stir their inspired cocktails, dreaming up a new menu each night. Starting at lunch and continuing until as late as 11 p.m., culinary artists are also at work in the kitchen, churning out elevated bar fare such as foie gras–buttered popcorn and their Old Fashioned sundaes, made with Angostura ice cream, candied orange, and whiskey caramel.
The elegant exterior of The Brooklyn Seafood, Steak & Oyster House is fitting for a restaurant located across the street from the Seattle Symphony and Seattle Art Museum. But as the old saying goes, it's what's inside that counts. Luckily, the inside of this award-winning seafood restaurant is just as beautiful, boasting what Gayot calls a "classy men’s club vibe." Picture, for example, a large, sturdy bar where bartenders serve microbrews, scores of wines (including those from local wineries), and specialty cocktails, or a dinning room filled with tables covered in crisp, white linens. As for the food, it's also easy on the eyes, but that's hardly what counts. What matters most is that the seafood is impeccably fresh, with daily deliveries yielding a rotating selection of fresh raw oysters, served on the half shell. Because the menu is dependent on fresh catches, the choices can change frequently, but entrees might include dishes such as lobster ravioli with king oyster mushrooms or a seafood volcano loaded with dungeness crab, prawns, and Penn Cove oysters. Meat lovers will also find plenty of choice cuts including a Martinez Farms slow-braised, moroccan-spiced lamb shank or the decadent steak oscar, which is paired with crab, asparagus, and a gold cheese potato tower, and presented to the diner by comedian Billy Crystal.
Inside Tip: Taste is located at the Seattle Art Museum, making it easy to combine cultural and culinary bliss in one stop.
When to Go: Stop by during happy hour for discounted meals and snacks, such as polenta fries with red pepper aioli, deviled eggs, and salt cod fritters, that can be paired with featured cocktails or domestic drafts. Otherwise, head in for Sunday brunch (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.) to try what the Seattle Magazine called the “Best Northwest Spin on Chicken and Waffles.”
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).