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dives in seattle saught!

What Seattle dives are there that are must tries? Any extremely original dishes that we should go on excersions for? My father is making an attempt to explore food. So far his favorite show regarding the topic is Diners, Dives, and Drive-ins which is... interesting. In the spirit of playing along, I have done a little of my own research and taken him to Hattie's Hat, Beth's, and the Sloop. He has also mentioned that he heard there was one was right next to Northlake Pizza. I would love the help with locating new places and being the know when we do go. Thanks!

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  1. The Pacific Inn Pub is perhaps not as deep of a dive as others in this town, but still qualifying IMO. It has outstanding fish and chips, and a great jukebox.

    1. there used to be a Korean place called 'Korea #1' which was downtown and killer!!! Very cheap/bad english on the signage and great food....check it if it is still in business...

      1 Reply
      1. re: jbyoga

        #1 went out of business, coincidentally (?), not long afer a poster hereabouts observed less than sanitary food prep there. I intended to check it out one day anyway, but it has become a falaffel and gyros place. I have not tried it.

      2. When I think dive, it makes me think of Wingmasters on 24th in Ballard. Super divey atmosphere though--females should not go alone and/or unarmed.

        BUT they used to have the best jerk chicken wings around (the chef was then fired, I'm guessing he is back by now, that's the kind of place it is) and Mozzarella sticks the size of your forearm.

        1 Reply
        1. re: dagoose

          I second this recommendation heartily. Great wings--tasty sauce, 4 levels of hot, and, the best part, the wing skin is usually a little crispy.

          1. re: christy319

            Mike's is a classic choice!

            The show you refer to recently featured a diner on Bainbridge, maybe your dad would enjoy a ferry ride to eat at a place featured on his favorite show?

            When thinking of dives in Seattle Mecca in Uptown/Queen Anne comes immediately to mind, although Beth's and the Sloop aren't far behind. The place by the Northlake that you are thinking of might be Vera's. I'm personally not a fan - there's no 'there' there for me.

            1. re: cburnsi

              vera's is (was?) in ballard; the place abaft northlake pizza is voula's - neither ranks above ordinary though voula's somehow made it to the food network - an excellent dive is the shanty on elliott at the foot of queen anne.

              1. re: howard 1st

                Yes! Right, Voula's. Sorry about that. It won some award a couple of year's ago for 'best breakfast' so I took myself on over there, but I felt it was nothing special.

                I forgot to mention the name of the place on Bainbridge, too - it's Big Star Diner.

            2. re: christy319

              I am on a personal campaign.
              Mike's has absolutely the best chili-parlor building on the planet. Temporally, stylistically, it's a happy midway between the cowboy chuckwagon day of chili and the happy day of the Humvee. I could wax-on about the perfection of the building and its appropriateness as a chili parlor, but that is only half my stump. The other half is that the best Chili in town (and I would take stiff bets on the whole country), is at World Class Chili, in the Market. Bummer of my day, today, at lunch, was learning that the market is planning to reassign the public seating area that helps keep World Class Chili alive in what they hope will be more directly profitable directions. For my money, boosting the bottom line of the Pike Place PDA is not as culturally significant as preserving Joe's Chili parlor. The best of all possible outcomes is for Mike to sell to Joe or some way get together - the two of them have a cosmically unbeatable combination. The best of all possible chili-parlor-buildings, and the best of all possible chili. Mike has reportedly rebuffed earlier approaches, and he seems to be doing OK down there (If the new development in "The Ballard Blocks" doesn't kill him), but the cultural health of the world will be best served if we can get these two together, and this may be the hot-iron moment. Joe is under the gun from the PDA, and Mike, from the new (TJ, yay) development. It's perfectly on the growing edge of Ballard, one of the hottest new foodie neighborhoods ever. OK, so Seattle has seen a lot of these come, and some go, but this one has legs, as the skirts of Ballard reach ever toward the late, lamented, Fremont (sorry, Suzie, but you caved to the evil empire and screwed this one up).
              So, there it is, the opportunity of several lifetimes.

              1. re: mrnelso

                Oh god, please let this never happen. I can't stand World Class Chili. Maybe it was just an off day when I was there, but, it was somewhere just a shade below 'ok'. I've always found Mike's to be far superior.

                  1. re: jaydeflix

                    Having lived in Texas, I love World Class Chili's Texas chili...simply the best I've had outside of Texas. Haven't had Mike's, haven't had WCC's Cincinnati chili. But as Mr. Nelso says, there's no accounting for taste. To each his own.

              2. My favorite ID dive is Hing Loon. The salt and pepper tofu as well as salt and pepper chicken wings are SO GOOD!

                1. Kona Kitchen on 5th Ave NE is a an island style divey, diner with a bar attached. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. Plate lunch is the way to go here. Survey the karate kid memorabilia on the walls [the owner was the villian in Karate Kid II]

                  A little hole in the wall that serves great Ethiopian food is Cafe Weini up in Pinehurst. It's a small mom and pop operation but the food is really good. Go if your dad doesn't mind eating with his hands. The vegetarian platter and chicken tibs makes a good combo, lot's of variety and ends up being about $20 for more food than 2 people can probably eat.

                  The Burgermaster on Aurora Ave N still has car service.

                  1. thanks everyone! we did mike's chili parlor this weekend. my father did the chili pasta and I ordered the chili fries- the chili was unlike anything I have had- more of a spicy meat mixture with little liquid and no beans. we ordered topping to go alond with our chili, like the server suggested, and tried our meaty spice mixture with chopped onions and jalapenos. there were a lot of regulars there when we went and they added character along with the old parlor like ambience. mike's is a place for all crowds.

                    1. My favorite dive bar with pizza is Stellar Pizza, in Georgetown. Great pie (but I do not want to get into the whole Not as Good as When I was Young in New York topic). Yukon Gold, Gorgonzola, and sweet onion, and this is just the beginning of their menu. It has the feel of dive bars I knew in small-town Montana in the sixties. Architecture, sort of assembled by accretion. The crowd includes plumbers, warehouse workers, smoky blondes with the same beehive they've worn for 35 years, big beefy mechanics, and an occsional suit... The place was a nightmare BB (before the ban), but I enjoy it. Good food, suitably divey good-old-boy atmosphere, tempered in the Seattle way. Think Northlake, with better pizza and a great tap set.

                      1. You gotta check out Mecca and Five Point then. At some point they were owned by the same people and you can count on some seriously salty regulars. Food is greasy n' good and the atmosphere even better.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: chownerd

                          five point is particularly good for late night almost morning breakfast ...it is a certifiable dive at 2-3 am

                        2. Emmett Watson's Oyster Bar in Pike Place - excellent clam strips and handcut homemade french fries!

                          1. If you want a dive bar, check out Al's Tavern in Wallingford. I guess I'm not positive that they still exist! The place reeks of old smoke and urine and the only food they serve comes out of the microwave (nuked hotdogs, anyone?). And when you're thoroughly dive-d out, you can go across the street to Moon Temple for dive "Chinese" food.

                            1. The Hurricane Cafe, Pacific Inn (F&C!), the Comet and Blue Moon (taverns only, if there is food, don't). Stella's (or was it Stellar?) pizza in Georgetown.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: mrnelso

                                I believe that Stella's became Stellar when they were sued (or at least threatened) by somebody who had a prior claim on the name "Stella."

                              2. Best Thai food for less than 8 bucks: Thai Tom on university ave by the UW campus.
                                Panang to die for, Pad Thai that i crave, and the absolute best Thai coconut soup this side of the Pacific. Not to mention the show you get to watch as the cook works at warp speed to keep up with the orders. Although I was sad to see the really skinny guy that used to cook is gone. He was fun to watch (and he talked to you).

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: ChefMoly

                                  i consider Tsukushinbo in the I.D. to be pretty divey. Kalbi (grilled beef short rib), curry udon, chicken wings, sake-marinated black cod, etc.

                                2. Some of my favorite dives include:
                                  - Blue Moon Tavern
                                  - 5 Point
                                  - Mecca
                                  - Little Red Hen