Seattle's best cheap eats
I will be up in Seattle for a week before XMas to visit my family and am looking for some great cheap eats/deals. My family hit up Tilth last year for a nice night out and loved it. That meal turned out to be one of the highlights of the trip. I am sure we will be back there again this year but now I am looking for those great lunch/happy hour places. Any help would be appreciated.
After hearing about it for years I finally tried happy hour at the Metropolitan Grill last month. They have a great menu of bar snacks--oyster shooters, prawn skewers, hot wings, fried artichoke hearts, quesadillas, etc. Portions are generous--two of us made a very tasty light dinner off three or four of these items, and most of them were around $3 - $6 a plate. Of course, they'll make it up on the $11 martinis if you're not careful, but if you can restrain yourself and stick to cheaper beverages, it's a heck of a deal--especially when you look at their regular menu!
(For added entertainment--or torment, depending on your personal investment portfolio--check out the board on the wall of the bar where customers predicted at the beginning of the year where they thought the Dow Jones would end 2009. It's looking like the winner will be at least 3,000 points high.)
820 Second Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104
Brian, I strongly suggest Tamarind Tree or Green Leaf as they both fit your criteria. Also on the short list is the upstairs bar at Maximillian's at the Market for their mussels. Since you are from Phoenix, they offer freshness unavailable in your region. For lunch, don't miss Salumi. Enjoy your visit!
a few lunch places downtown (* indicates over $10): Matt's (2nd floor, NW corner of Pike and 1st) for cornmeal catfish sandwich*; Steelhead diner (Pine below 1st) for (yes, but different prep) crispy catfish, gumbo, 1/2 ribeye*; NY Deli (SW corner of Pike and 1st, across from the inside entrance of DeLaurenti's market) for pastrami or kick-ass Reuben (followed by gelato at Bottega Italiano on 1st between Union and Pike), Cafe ZumZum (SW corner of Marion and 3rd) for lamb peas curry, Cafe Pho (upstairs from Zumzum) for kalbi or pho, O'Asian (Marion and 5th) for dimsum*, the Thai place on Pike between 2nd and 3rd for pad woon sen, Thai Go in the Westlake mall food court for pad ki mao, Koji Osakaya (University below 1st, halfway down the steps) for pork bone ramen (tonkotsu), Fulin (not downtown but in the International District via free downtown tunnel bus) for Chinese lunch combos, ramen, chicken wings, gyoza; 94 Stewart (Stewart below 1st) for lamb burger*; Wild Ginger (2nd and Union) for their lunch noodle dishes* (ample portions) or curry mussels.... happy hour: Barolo (Virginia between 6th/7th, go early if possible), Palomino (5th between Pike and Union), Spur (Blanchard between 1st and 2nd) for cocktails*
If you're grazing midday, you might try any of the seafood at Jack's Fish Spot (in Pike Place Mkt), Three Girls for sandwiches right across the walkway, or some organic fried chicken from Chicken Valley. DiLaurentis has a fabulous cheese selection and offers tastes to help you make up your mind.
If you feel like sitting down, a little more upscale, the soup at Cafe Campagne can't be beat. Ditto on the lamb burger; then again, one gets a larger portion with 94 Stewart's lamb burger, equally as delicious. And you can't miss with Lowell's for tasty cafeteria fare w/ a view.
Happy hour/gastro-pub-bar: The Brooklyn (oysters, quality bar snacks); Brasa (Iberian-ish); Spur (awesome small plates); Quinn's (bar food par excellence); Txori (Basque style pintxos)
Lunch: Green Leaf (vietnamese); Homestyle HK Cafe (cantonese street fare); Tsukushinbo (homestyle japanese, daily specials); Samurai Noodle (ramen); Jack's Fish Spot (fried fish, chowder, cioppino); Salumi (italian cured meats, sandwiches); El Quetzal (tortas, mexico city street fare).
I highly recommend the Happy Hour at WHYM (northend of Belltown). Their fries have to be some of the best in Seattle: they do 'em plain, or with melted cheddar & gravy or with feta cheese & fresh garlic...all food items on their Happy Hour menu are half the regular price.
Best Happy Hours in town price wise are Pesos and Contour... packed though... Try Zig Zag or Alibi Room in the market its a fun way to slow down your tourist time checking out the local wares...while you're in the market though try Sabra it's lodged under Kell's (you'll see the stairs to your left) and go down... they have the best baklava in town!
Great tips guys, I read the book "Heat" about Mario Batali and forgotten about his Seattle start so Salumi is a must. We did Palomino last year which is one of my parents favorites and couldn't agree more, a killer happy hour. I hit Matt's at the Market up a few years ago and loved that place as well so you guys have clearly earned my ear great picks. I want to do some seafood so the mussels suggestions are awesome as well as some Asian food as that too is something we don't have a lot of in the valley (Phoenix).
For something different for breakfast the best cheap eats is Beth's cafe on 99 west side of green lake. Excellent omlets!!!
This post is on point, but any list of Seattle's best cheap eats has to include sandwiches from Paseo and Banh Mi from... somewhere. I like Saigon Deli but that's another debate for another post.