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Aug 25, 2008 07:51 AM

Visting Seattle and Portland in Mid October

We will be visting both Seattle and Portland in Mid Oct. We are staying in the Seattle Center area and will not have a car, so walking distance (Portland staying with friends so not sure where but we will have a car there)
Looking for interesting places to eat. We love the show Diners, Drive Ins and Dives as that is about our speed and price range for food. Looking for the must eat local favorites and things you have to have in both cities. Not looking for fine dining just dining on good food cheaply.

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  1. Panos is near the Seattle Center. Great Greek appetizers. They have dinners as well, but the appetizers (and there are pages of them) are what they do best. Order several small plates of different kinds with some of the best pita in town and have a feast. Very reasonably priced. From the Center area, public transit is pretty good into the Downtown or up to Queen Ann Hill, so you could expand your horizons.

    1 Reply
    1. re: PAO

      Top of Queen Anne Hill is 5 Spot Cafe - is a diner style with a little creativity. They have a rotating theme (geographically) every couple months. They have other locations, with different themes.

      As seen on Diners, etc is the Big Star Diner on Bainbridge Island. It is fun to take the ferry over (great view of the water and city -cheap if you walk on) and you can walk to the diner. Classic diner food - the chrome diner itself was brought in from Jersey or somewhere.

    2. thanks we will probably try all these? Any reasonably priced seafood places by Pike Market or is that an area to avoid eating in?

      How about Portland?

      11 Replies
      1. re: countgrog

        No, there are lots of cheap eats in the market. NY Deli is good, lots of bakeries, etc to get picnic/to go, inside the market are 2 dines, one where Sleepless had a scene..also in the market isEmmet Watsons - a total dive, but best place in town for oysters IMO. Also the International District has lots of places to eat cheap if you like Asian. Sea Garden or 7 peppers are a good starting point....

        Can't help you w/ Portland, but search this board. There is a lot of banter about Kenny & Zukes deli, and some great pizza.

        1. re: bluedog67

          In fact, there was a bit of chatter on about nominating K&Z for DD&D.

          A great way to eat well and cheap in Portland is via the food carts. Check out or just walk around Downtown near 10th and Alder and you'll see that street food is alive and well here in PDX, and in fact there are a couple of new pods that I mean to check out.

          You'll get the usual suspects when you do a search for Portland, as it is a small town, but some under-the-radar places that I enjoy are places like Puerto Marquez and La Catrina for Mexican, Ngoc Han Bun Bo Hue and Pho Oregon for Vietnamese, Tanuki for Japanese, and Cool Moon Ice Cream for the obvious.

          1. re: SauceSupreme

            thanks. A friend mentioned Voodoo Doughnuts? Is it worth a visit while in Portland?

            also in Seattle is Matt's the place to eat at Pike market?

            1. re: countgrog

              Matt's is wonderful, but look at the menu, as it may be less diner and more restaurant than you seek. Wont break the bank, but not of the diner price range.

              1. re: bluedog67

                Haven't been since the remodel, but used to enjoy a catfish sandwich and sop for less than $15. Dinner is steeper.

                1. re: bluedog67

                  not all about a diner, enjoy a restaurant as well just not looking for fine dining

                2. re: countgrog

                  I found it to be a total dump, but I understand some to feel charmed by the dumpiness. If you can get out of town (Rent bikes if you're not driving.), the shouldn't miss is Pine State Biscuits.

                  Pine State Biscuits
                  3640 SE Belmont St, Portland, OR 97214

                  1. re: not the bad Steve

                    PSB is extremely easy to reach by bus, about a 10 minute ride on the #15. Or you can just go on Saturday to their booth at Portland Farmers' Mkt.

            2. re: countgrog

              A group of us are eating at all the Pike Place Market lunch spots. You can read about it here:

              1. re: Lauren

                thats helpful the NY deli looks like it will get a visit while I'm there

              2. re: countgrog

                For lunch at the Pike Place Market, try the Market Grill. It's a wraparound counter with seating where you watch them prepare your order. They serve quite good market-fresh grilled salmon and halibut sandwiches or fish served on a bed of brown rice. Orders come with a zesty coleslaw and you can get a nice green salad with the platters. I'm told the clam chowder is wonderful although I'm not a chowder fan. I used to be a regular when I worked downtown but haven't been since February and at that time there was market gossip about it being sold, so not sure of the latest there.

              3. Mike's Chili Parlor in Ballard (easy & quick busride from where you're staying) and was featured on Diners, Drive INs & Dives. It's a great old place with just the kind of interesting dive-y food you're looking for and the atmosphere is top-notch Dive including the 1940's architecture....and it's a fun-time joint. Also, Cyclops is downtown & is definitely an enjoyable 'dive'.

                1. World Class Chili, in the Market, behind and below deLaurenti's is presented by Texas chili cookoff judge JoeCanavan. This is not chili out of a can. All good - even the vegetarian has robust flavor. The Cincinnati (with cinnamon way in the back) is much better than they serve at the best-known chili parlor in Cinci.

                  1. Seeing as you're from North Carolina, and live informal places, I'd suggest you try Apizza Scholls for pizza and some of the great taco places in Portland. The truck at Killingsworth and Interstate is fabulous. Also, Por Que No (Alberta and Hawthorne locations) is a good one.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: chefguy

                      If you're going to drop a PQN suggestion, I'll throw in Nuestra Cocina, La Calaca Comelona and Autentica. My favorite non-truck Mexican place is actually Puerto Marquez.

                      1. re: SauceSupreme

                        thanks many great taco trucks here in NC but will explore west coast Mexican while we are out there. a few years back we went to San Francisco and chowhound sent us to a wonderful out of the way Mexican place