There are many great restaurants in the Seattle area, only some of which I have had the pleasure of visiting.  Here is a list of my current favorites located near my home and work which I would recommend you give a try if you haven’t already.

North (Lynnwood/Mill Creek):

Mexican: La Palmera (Mill Creek Towncenter) great family friendly Mexican restaurant with great food and great service.  The salsa is so tasty and a bit spicy, just like it should be.

Italian: Macaroni Grill (Alderwood Mall) – yes, it’s a chain restaurant, but they have some really good Italian dishes.  Just be sure to get there early on the weekends or make reservations.  It’s very popular.

Thai: Thai Bistro (corner of 164th and the Bothell-Everett Hwy) – great Thai food in a quaint space.

Burger: Five Guys (newest location at corner of 164th and Alderwood Mall Pkwy) – a little more expensive than you might be used to paying for a burger, but then it’s a much better burger than you are probably used to eating.  Lots of topping options, but be careful if you are alergic to peanuts.  They have peanuts everywhere to eat while you wait and cook their fries in peanut oil.  Sorry peanut allergy sufferers, but this might be another restaurant you might have to avoid (perhaps along with my Thai recommendation).  For everyone else, try to hit it at off times because the people love this place, and for good reason.

Downtown Seattle:

Greek: Mediterranean Mix (at 1st and  Washington in Pioneer Square) – seriously the best gyro I’ve ever had anywhere.  Yeah it looks like such a dive and it’s not in a great part of town, but the food is so good.  Sure, some people like their pizza and hot dogs, but you seriously can’t consider getting those when you could have one of their gyros.  Trust me – you have to try it at least once.  Open all day and really late so you can even grab something after you’ve hit the clubs downtown.

Philly Cheesesteak: Tat’s Deli (on Yesler in Pioneer Square) – this is the best place to have an authentic Philly cheesesteak sandwich in the northwest.  To get one more authentic, you’d have to get on a plane and get yourself to Philly.  This place gets busy on a workday at lunchtime so off times are also a good idea.

Burger: Burger Madness (on 4th just south of Sodo) – another great burger place.  They offer many different kinds of burgers including their namesake with cheese and onions stuffed inside the patty.  This is the place to have a burger if you are in Seattle.  And bring your friends so you can show off by attempting to get your picture on the wall (by successfully eating at least a 5 stack).  Yeah, good luck with that, but if you think you have what it takes, give the 12 stack a shot and you can win free burgers in the future (not that you would want any for about a month afterwards).

Sandwich: Salumi (where 2nd crosses 3rd Ave S in Pioneer Square) – this place is a hidden gem.  Many people have never even heard of it because it is just one place, almost a little hole in the wall, in downtown Seattle.  The storefront is very small but there is at least a little more room once you get inside.  Of course you often can’t miss the fact that almost every day it is open (when it is not raining) there is a decent sized line out the door.  This should be your hint that something is up, but go inside and you will find out for sure.  Salumi is an Italian influenced deli primarily specializing in various forms and flavors of salami along with other meats and pastas.  If you like this kind of fare, this is the place for you.  Very homemade and very good.  Get there early on a good day to get ahead of the crowd.

BBQ: Pecos Pit (on 1st Ave in Sodo) – excellent BBQ, but bring cash.  You should go early for lunch or else prepare to be patient as you wait in the line outside.  Outside seating only, so be ready for the weather or else grab your lunch to go.

Chili: Slim’s Last Chance (on 1st Ave but a little south of downtown) – amazing chili options but be warned this is a bit of a dive bar and they don’t allow minors.


Mexican: Tu Casa (Bellevue) – great authentic Mexican food (sadly, no longer in business.  I heard the owner simply sold out.)

Thai: Nibbana (downtown Bellevue) – really good and reasonably priced Thai food

Chinese: Din Tai Fung (downtown Bellevue) – known for their dumplings, and the Bellevue location is just one of 3 in the US (the other two are in LA of course)

Chinese: Dough Zone (Bellevue) – a comparable dumpling house to Din Tai Fung but without the long wait and higher prices.

Burger: Lunchbox Laboratory (downtown Bellevue) – amazing burgers

Italian: Maggiano’s (downtown Bellevue) – very good Italian restaurant

Thai: Bai Tong (Redmond and Issaquah) – excellent Thai food.


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