Seattle, one of top foodie cities in the U.S. is also a walking city with easily navigable streets and a waterfront not to be missed. Combine the two for an exploration of Seattle’s yummiest spots while walking off some of the calories as you go.
Begin your day with breakfast at Le Pichet, located on 1st Street and just a block from Elliott Bay. I thought I had been given the lunch menu, but it turns out they have an all day menu that encompasses both breakfast and lunch. I have to admit I was skeptical at first and was on the fence about staying.
I spied only two choices listed that resembled a breakfast dish, but when I sat back and realized how crowded the place was at 9 a.m. I decided I had to give it a chance.
I ordered the Oefus plats, jambon et fromage (two eggs broiled with ham and gruyere) and it was delicious. While all entrees come with baguette and butter I highly recommend the house made croissant. While it may not have been a typical breakfast spot, I was happily satisfied by both my courage to stay and the wonderful food.
Afterwards, walk a few blocks to Pike Place Public Market. Located on the waterfront, this market which opened in 1907 is one of the oldest continually operated public farmers’ markets in the United States.
It may be one of Seattle’s most popular tourist attractions, but it is also a food lovers paradise. From local honey, lavender, jams, nuts and cheeses to the famous fish stands and lots of produce this is a spot to explore, taste and shop. If you aren’t a local you’re still in luck because many of the fish stands offer free shipping of their fresh local delicacies.
For lunch start at Maximilien. This French restaurant is located in the Market and offers beautiful views of the bay. But more importantly, they offer the best mussels in the city. Choose from Les moules Roquefort (steamed with cream, blue cheese, beer and bacon) or my favorite Les moules Marinière (Mussels steamed with butter, white wine, shallots, garlic, and parsley). Pair it with a glass of white wine and you’ll be in heaven.
Why limit lunch to one location! After all this day is devoted to food, so for your second course, head down the street to Ivar’s for the city’s best clam chowder. Thick and creamy it is sure to satisfy all palates. In fact, many say it rivals or surpasses chowder in New England. Ask for a window seat and you can continue to enjoy the view of the bay.
Next, walk up Pine Street to 5th where you’ll catch the monorail to the Seattle Center and the city’s most famous landmark: the Space Needle. Built for the 1962 World’s Fair, the space needle reaches a height of 605 feet. Head to the top and take in 360 degree views of the Downtown Seattle skyline, and observe the beauty of Mount Baker, Mount Rainier, the Cascade and Olympic Mountain Ranges and the surrounding islands from the observation deck.
Head inside and enjoy a glass of wine at the observation deck wine bar or head down one floor to Sky City. While there is a minimum food fee, if you visit mid-day Monday-Thursday it is only $17. So, enjoy a cocktail or coffee and something sweet while the restaurant does a full rotation in one hour.
Next, take the two minute trip back on the monorail and walk a few blocks to 7th and Olive to The Oceanaire Seafood Room for dinner. If at all possible try to time dinner to end before sunset. Known as one of the top places in town for seafood, Oceanaire offers a menu that changes daily to highlight what is at its absolute peak. Sink into one of the deep booths, order a stiff martini and relax. Whatever you order, start with the oysters and end with their decadent baked Alaska.
After a full day enjoying the tastes of Seattle and exploring all this town has to offer, head just a few blocks to one of the most luxurious hotels in the city: The Grand Hyatt Seattle. Ask for a room on one of the top floors overlooking the Space Needle or the waterfront. If you want to splurge request a corner suite offering panoramas of both. You won’t find a better view anywhere in the city and I promise you won’t be disappointed.
The rooms are plush, spacious and comfortable. Put on the fluffy robe, sit back, relax and watch the sunset over the city. After the lights of the city have illuminated the night sky, take a warm bath in the oversized Jacuzzi tub and soak your tired feet. Then snuggle into the comfy bed filled with lots of soft pillows because tomorrow is another day and there is much more to explore.
What & Where:
Le Pichet (1933 1st Ave; 206- 256-1499)
Pike Place Public Market (between the waterfront and First Ave at Pike St)
Maximilien (81A Pike St; 206-682-7270)
Ivar’s (At Pier 54; 1001 Alaskan Way; 206-624-6852)
Seattle Monorail (Westlake Center Mall station, at Fifth and Pine St; departures every 10 minutes from 9am to 9pm Sunday through Thursday and 9am to 1pm Friday and Saturday.)
Space Needle (400 Broad St; 206-905-2100)
Sky City (at the Space Needle. 400 Broad St; 206-905-2100)
The Oceanaire Seafood Room (1700 7th Ave # 100; 206-267-2277)
The Grand Hyatt Seattle (721 Pine St; 721 Pine St; 206-774-1234)