Seattle Business District Lunch
I am working in downtown Seattle for a few weeks (near 3rd/Cherry) and looking for some nice lunch spots. Outdoor options (on days like this) would be great, or other rec's from low to high end, ethnic to whatever.... I have about 1 hour for lunch.
Salumi is by far the best lunch you'll find in the area. It's a few blocks' walk and there's always a line, so it will take the majority of your lunch hour. If you want to miss the rush, it's better to go early than late. (They tend to sell out of things.)
Closer to your office, I can recommend three takeout options: Red Bowls (Korean-inspired rice and vegetable dishes--try the bimimbop); the regrettably named but surprisingly good New York City Deli Market (excellent sandwiches--you can order off the menu, build your own, or just ask the guys behind the counter to make you a sandwich); and, on those days when you need some roughage, Market Fresh (it's a chain, but really above par for that sort of thing--I always get the fresh mango and the sauteed asian long beans).
There's pleasant courtyard in front of City Hall up on Fourth, where there are outdoor lunchtime concerts in the summer months.
You said you are looking for nice lunch spots near 3rd/Cherry. For places with outdoors seating I would suggest you try, McCormick's Fish, Tulio's, and Boka. Other places to try are Shuckers, Metropolitian Grill, Belle Epicurean, Bakeman's, Library Bistro, Cafe Paloma. Some of these other places may also have outdoor seating. Some of these restaurants are fancy, some not. These are not Seattle's outstanding eating places but in my experience they serve decent to good food. Try them out and let us know what you think.
Marion Court on 3rd & Marion is a block or so away. There is a center courtyard for outdoor lunch seating and lots of good choices including an excellent sushi place, a decent Thai fast food place, and Zum Zum Cafe, a favorite of mine, featuring Pakistani veggie and meat curries at very inexpensive prices.
Salumi, yes. May take you more than an hour unless you get there after 2 (when you run the risk of them being out of the best stuff.)
A turkey sandwich from Bakeman's. I like mine light and dark on wheat with mayo, cranberry, lettuce, tomato. Sometimes mustard instead of cranberry.
Zum Zum, a couple blocks north, has decent Pakistani food.
The Elliot Bay Cafe in the basement of the Elliot Bay Book Co (FANTASTIC independent bookstore) does a great lunch since they got a new chef. Their space is pleasant enough but you can also take your lunch to Occidental Park across the street - unfortunately the pleasantness of that park varies wildly depending on police presence since it tends to become a homeless hangout and open-air drug market when the cops aren't patrolling it aggressively. It's often nice at lunchtime but stay away after 3pm.
Boka (1st & Madison) is a bit fancier and food can be hit or miss but they do have some nice outside tables where you're less likely to be harrassed than most outdoor spaces downtown.
Unfortunately the south end of downtown is especially full of vagrants - thanks to the courthouse, jail, and homeless shelters clustered in that area - so it's sometimes tough to find a quiet spot outdoors to take your lunch to go without being hassled.
Best spot I've found to eat outside south of downtown is in the plaza at the Union Square office complex (near the food-court entrance to Uwajimaya - a great store but don't bother with anything from the food court itself) - there's some fountains, tables, and chairs and it's typically overrun with office workers rather than freelance pharmaceutical dealers and the schizophrenic.
Salumi is only a few blocks away from you and one of Seattle's best. Very little indoor seating (and long waits) make it practically an outdoor option.
Tat's Deli has good sandwiches not too far from you, too.
You aren't far away from the international district (especially if you hop on the bus in the bus tunnel), so you should consider all of those options, too.
Do a search for downtown lunch options (there are a ton of threads similar to this) and you should find a bunch of other suggestions