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Group dinner in Bellevue near Hyatt?

We’re going to be in Bellevue for a conference later this week and would like to gather our group for a Friday night dinner. We’re staying at the Hyatt Regency in Bellevue and I don’t think everyone has a rental car, so something within walking distance would be preferable (unless there’s good public transportation?). Our group will be including students, so we’re not looking for high-end, must-eat places. I expect we’ll have at least a dozen people, too.

It’s not totally up to me, so there’s a chance we could end up at some random burger joint due to lack of accessible choices. But, I figure if I was armed with some decent recommendations, I’d have a chance for a nice meal. I don’t think cuisine type is a limiting factor, mostly just group size and meal cost ranges.

I’ve never been to Seattle/Bellevue before, so I have no idea what’s around our hotel. Any help??

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  1. I was in Bellevue in Januray and alao stayed at the Hyatt- if you are in there Regency room floor make sure you go for the comp. appie hour! There are a lot of chain restaurants around Bellevue Suqaure- The Cheesecake factory, an upscale Mexican grill type place. We had dinner at Manzana Grill just down the street and it was really good- I'd reccomend it for a group as there are lots of choices, big booths and half price happy hour. you can check the menu out online. Of course, Cheesecake Factory has the most ridiculous amount of choice but then you can eat that sort of stuff anywhere. Hop[e this helps!
    meghan

    1. I don't eat in downtown Bellevue too often, but I recall that the Taphouse Grill (in Bellevue Galleria, a couple of blocks from the Hyatt) was pretty good, and were able to handle a pretty decent size walk-in group too.

      1. Personally, I'd like to avoid the big chain restaurants, since we can always go to them wherever we are. I know some areas have regional chains that a pretty good, and those I don't mind checking out, as long as they aren't some reincarnation of Chili's with a different name or something.

        Manzana Grill looks like it has a pretty varied menu. And I like the Taphouse Grill happy hour menu! I'll keep an eye out for both of these when we get to our hotel to check them out.

        thanks!

        1. Walking distance from the Hyatt is a decent Indian restaurant -- Moghul Palace, relatively inexpensive.

          1. I like Tap House and definitely prefer it over Manzana. There's also a newer Japanese place called Yama, upstairs from Tap House. We've enjoyed their happy hour and some terrific entrees (sushi and cooked fusion) there recently.

            Pagliacci is at Bel Square also, and would be fun and casual for a group that includes students. It's a local pizza chain.

            1. Tap House has a huge choice of beers on tap if that matters. My wife says the food is not bad. They have a good happy hour. I've only sampled their liquid menu.

              I don't think Manzana Grill is that great.
              I'd avoid Rockbottom Brewery too.
              As I recall, that Pagliacci isn't very big.
              Pogacha isn't too far away and is relatively inexpensive and interesting.
              Mediterranean Kitchen is good but very busy and small. Only go if you get reservations.

              I've heard Joey's isn't bad but I've never been there.

              From memory, other choices in the area are
              Cheesecake Factory
              Ruth's Chris Steakhouse
              Daniel's Broiler
              McCormick & Schmick's
              Trader Vic's
              PF Chang's
              Red Robin
              Z Tejas
              Magiano

              All these places get pretty busy on a Friday night.

              1. We ended up at Pagliacci's with our group of 20. They don't accept reservations on Friday/weekend nights, but other places we checked in the area couldn't accomodate such a large group. We thought Paggliacci would put us in their upstairs section, but they ended up lining up a row of tables right under the stairs downstairs. It was okay, but you could really only talk to a few people on either side of you.

                We ended up putting our name in around 6pm and thought we'd just have to stick someone there to wait, but they did let us leave a phone number so we could wander around. They estimated an hour and a half wait, and after an hour they called us in.

                The pizza was definitely worth going for but I was bothered that they weren't willing to just let us reserve an area for such a large group. I can understand not wanting to bother with 2-4 people res. on a busy night, but isn't there some way they could have accommodated us? Asked for a credit card # to hold the spot?

                Actually, we ended up at Rock Bottom for our banquet and I was surprised that the food (buffet style, even) was very tasty! Some enchiladas, salmon, mached potatoes... the dessert tray they set out was awful, so we just ate the berries that were garnishing everything.

                The rest of our trip in Seattle was very nice and we managed to slip in some great meals, too.

                1. Too late now, but when I was at the Hyatt I talked to the concierge named Thelma and she set up our party for six at Yama Japanese Restaurant - it's above the Tap House- not good sinage so you have to know where you are going, but very beautiful inside. They had a banquet room that wasn't being used and could have fit your party of 20.... More of a fine dinning place, but a good happy hour. The soft shell crab was large and juicy...nice teas....Japanese Kirin beer on tap.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Been_Around

                    I would assume that's the place up on the top floor of the Bellevue Galleria over by the movie theater ticket booth? I don't get over there too often (there's not a lot to really go over there for these days, and that space sat empty for quite a while after the seafood place that was the first occupant went out of business.)

                    1. re: Vexorg

                      I'm not from Bellevue, I was just visiting and staying at the Hyatt, so I don't know the history of the space, but yes, it is on the top floor of the Galleria next to the movie theater. It's worth checking out. I was with a group of six. We tasted each other's meals, of course, and the ones that stood out were soft shell crab, gyoza, sea bass, and the beef fillet....also the sashimi.

                      1. re: Been_Around

                        We've visted Yama a few times since "finding" it a couple of months back. We also had excellent meals, and they have a terrific happy hour.

                        Our favorites include the steak, sashimi platter, seafood taco, spare ribs and green tiramisu.