While You’re Waiting: If things time out right, watch a Seahawks game on TV.
Meet the Owners: Brian Tatman and Jason Simodejka both grew up on the East Coast before moving to Seattle in 1996. When they arrived in the city, they noticed a great selection of local food vendors, yet a lack of East Coast–style delis. So they opened their own.
Inside Tip: Check if there’s a wait: an online webcam lets customers see the current line, which is especially helpful during busy lunch hours.
While You’re in the Neighborhood
Before: Step into the historic jail cell at the Seattle Metropolitan Police Museum (317 3rd Avenue South).
After: Strap on some climbing shoes and scale a faux rockface at the Seattle Bouldering Project (900 Poplar Place South).
If You Can’t Make It, Try This: Get your fix of traditional philly cheesesteaks at Calozzi’s (1306 4th Avenue).
Entering The Metropolitan Grill is a bit like stepping back in time––1903 to be exact. Tall mahogany doors swing open slowly, revealing 20-foot ceilings elegant crown molding, and rich, tufted velvet booths. A tuxedo-clad maitre d escorts guests to the 60-foot black marble bar or past the rich mahogany walls to a private table dressed in crisp white linen. But as luxurious as the atmosphere is, it quickly melts into the background once the menu is opened. Steaks, hand cut by the executive chef, are grilled to order over mesquite charcoal, and available in every type of cut, from Delmonico to a 42-day aged ribeye. Then, of course, there's the American Wagyu, which comes from Idaho's Snake River Farms, where Black Angus cattle have been bred with Japanese Wagyu to create a USDA Prime beef with higher marbling, richer flavor, and a more delicate texture. And while steak may be the star of the menu, The Metropolitan grill also excels in other timelessly elegant dishes such as lobster tail, bacon-wrapped pork chops, and a classic iceberg wedge salad, served with a tiny ice pick.
Landry's, Inc. operates more than 40 restaurant brands with only two main goals: good food and good memories. Thankfully, each of their venues has a signature element that's hard to forget, whether the Oceanaire's fresh seafood?flown in daily?or Rainforest Cafe's animatronic wildlife that's almost as realistic as the Amazon's wind-up monkeys. Steak and seafood spots feature prominently on the list of Landry's locations, including Morton's The Steakhouse, Vic & Anthony's Steakhouse, and McCormick & Schmick's Seafood & Steaks. But there are standouts in other genres, too, such as the Italian trattoria known as Grotto.
Antlers, wooden beer barrels, and exposed stone walls line The Lodge Sports Grille’s interior, where a bar crafted from rough-hewn wood shines like a showpiece. Behind it, custom wooden shelves stocked with top-shelf liquor and more than 70 beer taps drilled into stripped logs tempt thirsty patrons. The decidedly lodge-like feel of the restaurant spills over into the menu, which features hearty fare such as half-pound burgers, beer-battered halibut, and steaks aged for 28 days or placed in a time machine and sent 28 days into the future. Along its 40-foot solid maple bar top, patrons lounge sipping fresh, housemade sangria while viewing 60-inch flat-screen televisions which can be viewed from all angles of the house. Those eager to unwind in more natural surroundings may admire the roaring flames of The Lodge's double-sided stone fireplace during daily happy hour sessions and beyond.
The show is just arm’s length away from diners at Benihana, who watch as outfitted chefs slice and sear their dinner, teppanyaki-style, on a big flat grill in the center of each table. Beyond the visual feast, Benihana’s menu includes everything from steaks and seafood to chicken and unique sides like the Onion Volcano, Flying Shrimp, and the famous fried rice. Showman chefs talk up a storm, cracking jokes, flipping food through the air and showcasing plenty of skilled handiwork, all before serving the hot entrées straight from the grill. Fun business lunches or daytime excursions out with the family are also perfect at Benihana, which features the same visual spectacle during the day, as well as an all-you-can-eat sushi buffet.
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.