Desert Hound Moving to Northwest
I am an avid foodie, currently living in the desert southwest of Phoenix, AZ. That all changes next week as I am moving to Washington. I will be working in downtown Seattle and living in Bremerton. It suddenly hit me last night that my 100+ list of restaraunts that I wanted to try here in the Valley of the Sun will no longer do many any good except on return trips to see friends.
Before you suggest it, I am going to search the board here and I am sure I will find all kinds of nuggets, but I also thought it wouldn't hurt to let you know what kinds of things I like and let you experts jump start my effort. You did me right last summer when I asked for a recommendation on the Kitsap penninsula and I was steered towards Xinhs in Shelton. Really enjoyed that!
Basically I like just about all types of foods. Typically stay away from chains as much as possible. Have a special fondness for that divey, family run, whole in the wall ethnic place that serves up incredibly authentic fare. I do enjoy fine dining, but not the high price to impress places, but a place like Binkley's in Cave Creek, AZ where the food and experience are worth the price. As far as location, I am willing to travel just about anywhere in the Seattle Metro area for a good meal, but obviously would give preference over places close to where I live or work. In addition, cool downtown lunch spots and good brewpubs in the area would be cool as well.
Looking forward to moving up there and experiencing the Seattle food scene.
Hole in wall:
Zaina's on Cherry, does a great eggplant pita and arguably the best falafel in town.
Green Leaf will blow you away (search here for details).
Samurai Noodle for the spiciest ever fresh ramen (wow).
You have a major project ahead of you in exploration of Chinatown and the 12th & Jackson zone. Lucky man. Details are here.
Sigular experience: Bakeman's. Take a ten-spot and be ready: Turkey light with cran and soup and pie (be ready to talk fast and don't fret the line - Jason does keep it moving).
Take a twenty and get some specials at Salumi.
Made it to Salumi today and wow, it knocked my socks off. I had the Porchetta sandwich and it was amazing. Before I ordered I noticed the price of like $8 or 9 bucks and thought that seemed a bit steep. But after taking possession and then more importantly that awesome first bite of the tender, slightly salty in a good way piece of ham heaven, I definitely got my money's worth. Salumi will be put right to the top of my lunch roatation. (Big bonus, only 10 minute walk from work!)
Thanks for the excellent tip.
I'm not familiar with Phoenix, but am trying to think of some things that you might not have much of there. Forgive me if I'm mistaken. Have you tried Ethiopian? Lots of those in Seattle. Cafe Soleil is one of our favorites. Heartily agree with Green Leaf recommendation for Vietnamese--the food is good and the family that owns it is wonderful. And for a family run, reasonably priced hole-in-the-wall Japanese place, try Tsukushinbo for noodles, tempura, sushi, etc. Malay Satay Hut is also an ethnic restaurant not to be missed--good Malay/Singaporean food is hard to find! We just tried Malabar for Southern Indian food and were impressed with the dosas. Panos is good for Greek appetizers and pita--make a meal of them! For take-out fish and chips with good views, try Little Chinooks or Anthony's outdoor stand on the waterfront (I would avoid Anthony's inside restaurants, however). Or if you want really high end but incredibly delicious french fries, try Sambar. Paseo is good for Cuban style sandwiches and roast chicken. The Pike Place Market (aka the Market) is a good place to nosh, although there are some real stinkers there as well (I'd avoid Emmett Watson's for instance). Elliot's on the waterfront for oysters on the half shell.
Kitsap County is sort of a wasteland, especially compared to Seattle and the Eastside, but we enjoy Cafe Nola on Bainbridge Island for lunch/brunch (their dinners don't seem so good), Madoka (Asian fusion, sort of) on Bainbridge Island, and the Agate Pass Cafe in Suquamish. MorMor in Poulsbo is also good. For reasonably priced take out food, try Central Market in Poulsbo. They make their own flour tortillas, which are incredibly yummy, especially if you get one right off the press. In fact, Central is the place you want to shop for groceries when you can (T&C on Bainbridge is also very good--part of the same local chain, but Central is bigger and closer to you).
Thanks for all of the good recommendations. I have already been to Central Market and agree it is a very cool place. I have been fortunate to have traveled to Malaysia quite a bit, so Malay Satay Hut moves to the front of the line. I hope they have my favorite Hawker (street vendor) food Char Koay Teow.
Since you'll be working downtown, specifically search for threads about the Pike Place Market and the International District for lunch or after work. The happy hour threads would be interesting to you too since there are so many places that offer great food at bargain happy hour prices. Luckily chains are not as big in Seattle as they are in other parts of the country, though downtown does have a fair number (for the tourists or shopping suburbanites I think).
Take yourself to lunch at Matt's in the Market as your welcome to Seattle lunch.
I know there's a thread about Kitsap Peninsula eats, too, though from the complaints I've heard on this board I wouldn't expect too much.