Good dining in Juneau?
I'm going to be in Juneau for two nights on business. What are the standout restaurants?
Just repiled to another thread about this, see that also. I am sorry in advance- if you can get a colleague to cook you fresh seafood at home that is by far the best meal in town. Try a Pacific Rim burger at Doc Water's for lunch. The Hangar has great views and decent Alaskan fare- I always enjoy my cheaper, pub menu selections much more there than the pricier entrees (plus they have a great beer selection). Baranof is hit or miss but usually good service. Breakfast at Costa's or the Sandpiper. Overpriced chinese food but nice mellow surroundings and beautiful plating can be found at Zen. For a drink the best atmosphere is the Alaskan Bar (funky) or the Bubble Room at the Baranof (fancy). Good luck and know we are eating great food, we're just cooking it at home!
I lived in Juneau for 35 years but it still chagrins me to report that Juneau is notorious for overpriced mediocre food. One learns to cook out of self defense, or one learns to part with lots of money for ordinary fare, in the hope that the camraderie will make up for what the food is missing. Having said that, when last I ate in Juneau, Zephyr was the newest exciting place to eat. They make a decent cocktail and the mahamurra or steamer clams as an appetizer are quite acceptable. I also liked their veal, tablemates found the lamb quite good. It's funny how soon we forget, but out at the "McNugget intersection" near the airport, there's a pretty decent sushi bar, the name of the joint slips my memory. I have never had very good food at Doc Waters. The Hanger is OK for a caesar or fish and chips or a burger, as long as your expectations aren't too high. It has a great view. I would not recommend Zen, I ate there once. It was far to ordinary for the exorbitant prices. Hillpagan is absolutely correct, the best restaurants are in the homes of Juneauites who know what to do with a fillet of salmon or halibut, a bucket of clams from Gambier bay, or a crab fresh from the pot. Enjoy your trip - don't forget to pack a rain coat.
If you're looking for great halibut and chips - head out to the Sandbar. Its funky but the food is good. The Canton House is the sushi place out by McDonalds in "the valley" and they do have a great sushi bar. Come to the island (douglas island) and enjoy pub food at the Island Pub or a good hamburger at the Douglas Cafe. If you're staying downtown, the Hangar is good for its view and the food isn't bad. Zephyr is the newest place in town and its food is pretty good. Yes its expensive to eat out in Juneau - but then what isn't expensive here?
Bottom line - enjoy!
One of the better meals I had on my last visit to Juneau consisted of fresh halibut tacos and a Negra Modela at El Sombrero, right downtown on the main street in town; a block or two from the Baranoff Hotel on the same street (which is a logical business choice, right in the middle of town.) I see from hillpagans's update in this thread below that it is still a possibility:
You definitely could do worse, just walk by and see if they are advertising any halibut specials.
If you enjoy anything else, please do report back. I will be back in Juneau next summer and, well, it isn't known for its food....