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Apr 2, 2009 03:40 PM

Hip/Cool restaurants in Seattle

Hey all - I am making a trip to Seattle next weekend for the first time with a few old friends from college, and we were looking for some restaurant recommendations. I know nothing about the city, but enjoy casual restaurants that aren't too pricey with inventive food, cool but not overly loud atmosphere, and just generally a nice vibe.

Any suggestions?

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  1. Palace Kitchen, Tamarind Tree, Matt's in the Market.

    I recommend the search function as well. It's been years since Chowhound had a broken search box.

    4 Replies
    1. re: terrier

      Terrier - the cool thing about having these boards is to have a conversation with each other. I particularly enjoy it when people from other areas (and I have been that person in other cities) write in and ask "us" where we would suggest they go. It's interesting to see who "we" recommend and why.

      Think of it this way - The thread is the restuarant, Foodie9981 is the customer - you are the server. How would you answer the customers question when asked: "What would you recommend here?"

      Your snotty reply is just not necessary. Seriously. Be gracious, be nice, show some hospitality.

      1. re: seattlegem

        Well said Gem.

        I too have been on both ends of these types of requests and also received the stock, "Use the search" answer when I was looking for recs for Minneapolis. But the people that were polite enough to respond, gave me suggestions and started a dialgoue to get me to some great restaurants, which had I just read previous threads I might not have gotten to.

        You hit on a key point and that is, for me anyway, the main value of Chowhounds is the dialogue, not just the ability to search old conversations, but to have new ones.

        Billy Bob

        1. re: Billy Bob

          Another thing to think about - restaurants can go from good to bad (or even close down) rather quickly. I did a search for restaurants in Seattle and some of the first threads on the list were from well over a year ago.

          I don't mind looking at older threads, but I also like to ask the questions again so I can get the up-to-date version.

        2. re: seattlegem

          Sorry, I had a bad day. I put as much thought into my reply as the "customer" put into asking it. On the bright side, my tip didn't come up short.

          I answer "Visiting Seattle, where should I go?" questions all the time here. I prefer it when they continue "I'm considering ABC and XYZ, are they good?" or even the incredible "I searched the board but didn't find anything."

          "I know nothing about the city... Any suggestions?" = "I don't care enough to do any research."

          I stand by my reply, form and content - and I believe it was helpful. Chowhound *did* have a broken search engine for most of its existence. One could be forgiven for forgetting to try it if you were a returning user from the bad old days.

      2. I like:
        Spur for great cocktails and even better snacks/food. Great for sharing and a very cool spot.
        Presse is wonderful for groups and so affordable
        Tribunali is a foxy space and has beautiful food for sharing. Very cool space and great drinks.
        Palace is always solid.
        Let us know where you end up!

        4 Replies
        1. re: Green Eggs and Ham

          I would agree with Green Eggs and Ham on his suggestions, except for I would replace Spur with Quinn's in Capitol Hill.

          1. re: maybelle

            My view is that Spur is hipper than Quinn's, but both are good choices.

            1. re: not the bad Steve

              I prefer the food at Quinn's, but "overly loud" is a fair characterization of that space. Spur is a good alternative.

          2. re: Green Eggs and Ham

            Agree with Spur. Tribunali is a pizza place, probably doesn't fit your criterion of inventive. Tamarind Tree is Vietnamese, so your friends would need to be somewhat adventurous/chowhoundish. I would add Barolo to the list, high on vibe, but go during happy hour (early if you want to get seats) if you are looking for bargain prices on food.

          3. Ocho (tapas) in Ballard may be a place to consider. Plenty of hip/cool places to grab a drink before/after the meal.

            1. Kings Hardware in Ballard is a fun place to go for drinks and light food. You could start there and then there a several places - within walking distance - to go for dinner.

              I agree with the other posters - Spur is pretty cool - but very loud and, if you have a lot of people, seating could be troublesome.

              Quinn's food is fantastic. Barrio is interesting to look at. It is extremely loud when full - so maybe not a great place if you're trying to catch-up with old friends. Via Tribunali's front area is nice and light, and the food is pretty good - not inventive tho'.

              I haven't been to a new place called Poppy - but a fair amount of people like it. It would fit your list of casual and inventive. You could search that one and read the reviews to get a feel for it.

              Let's us know what you ended up choosing. Have fun!

              1. CYCLOPS...hip, cool, downtown, very good food, casual and not pricey...definitely with inventive food...check out their menu on line....