Bars & Restaurants Near Microsoft
There are a lot of chain restaurants and par-to-sub-par pseudo-ethnic restaurants near Microsoft, but no good or near-great restaurants come to mind. Ditto for bars. There's Andre's Euroasian Bistro nearby in Bellevue, and that was rather good the one time I dined there. Ideas of good eats for (1) lunch, (2) dinner and (3) drinks? I'm not price sensitive, to a point, of course.
Back when my SO worked at Microsoft I used to go out there pretty often for lunch. Here were our favorites:
Texas Smokehouse BBQ (located off Redmond-Woodinville Rd) - Only on Wednesdays for their Burnt Ends sandwiches. I never found anything else there to be nearly as good, but I do know people that like the Pulled Pork sandwiches and beef ribs. Get there early on Wednesdays because it gets crowded fast. I'm not entirely sure they're even open for dinner.
Jeem - Decent dim sum in the Overlake area. Best for lunch, I think.
Kanishka - really wonderful Indian. My second favorite Indian in the Seattle area. Great for lunch or dinner. I always order off the menu, but I thought their buffet was quite nice looking.
Celtic Bayou - I am personally not that big of a fan, but my SO and several of his friends LOVED it. I've been there for dinner only.
British Pantry - Love, love, love this place. It reminds me of my grandma's cooking. Great for dinner - especially on Fridays or Saturdays when they serve roast beef and yorkshire pudding. Heaven.
Golden Chopsticks - I haven't eaten here in years. I used to love it as it had the only Mongolian Beef I could tolerate (I'm very picky about meat quality and theirs was surprisingly good). I've heard that it's gone downhill, but since I can't verify it, it might be worth checking out. It's in the Redmond Town Center and was good for lunch or dinner.
Sorry - I'm no help in the drinks department!
re:Kanishka: agree, 2nd only to Taste of India on Roosevelt in Seattle, I'd say, and probably the best America/India buffet (i.e. more meat then any other India buffet around). I could stuff myself on their veggie samosas, which they make really spicy if you ask, spicy like they are in Southeast Asia.
re: Celtic Bayou, IMO, should have been shut down years ago for its corruption of Cajun food. I'm a harsh critic re:Cajun because I am (was?) Cajun; speak the French dialect, etc., and Celtic Bayou is the absolute worst Cajun food I've tried in the 12 years since I left Louisiana. I would say that the menu is Cajun, but the food isn't. It's like ordering Thai, and getting Greek. It was so bad that, after I ate there the first time, I wrote them a letter with recipes for how to make etouffee and gumbo. (By "ate", I mean tasted and then ask them to take it away).
People say they stay open because the beer is good, and I disagree with that one too. It was warm both times I tried it. Maybe that's how the Celts drink it?
Incidentally, the best I've had is "From The Bayou" in Parkland, WA (508 Garfield St S, Parkland, WA 98444). It's still not great, but it is authentic. It's owned by a couple from Opelousas, Louisiana, which is prime Cajun country. If you want to know how inauthentic Celtic Bayou is, From the Bayou will provide the contrast.
re:Jeem/British Pantry: will try them soon. I've never Yorkshire pudding. :|
re:Texas BBQ: That sandwich sounds like a must have.
Thanks, and sorry for the venom on Celtic Bayou. Faux-Cajun food turns me into the proverbial Mad Cajun. :D
Hey, no problem! I didn't like Celtic Bayou, either! Like I mentioned, my SO liked it and I think it's because he's Ukrainian and has no real concept of what Cajun food really is. He liked it for the taste that it was, not for what it was supposed to be (if that makes any sense).
Yorkshire puddings are very similar to popovers only bigger. They are made to carry the delicious gravy served with the beef. In Britain there is a food called a "toad in the hole" which is a banger served inside a yorkshire pudding with gravy. British Pantry might actually serve those too...