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Aug 14, 2009 06:30 PM

2 days in Seattle

I'm going to be visiting Seattle Aug. 24-25 and want to make the most of my trip, food-wise, so am coming to Chowhounders for help. Help!

I'll be staying in the Capitol Hill area without a car, and as an artistic type am sort of on a budget so I'm looking for relatively inexpensive options.

I've already decided that even tho' it's touristy, I need to go to Pike Place Market. So that's a given. Anything specific there you'd recommend (I have a few ideas already)? Also, what's in season, produce-wise (esp. fruit), that I should look for either at the market or as an ingredient at restaurants? I'm coming from Arizona so am looking forward to the opportunity to have fresh, local things that we just can't grow here in the desert.

I'd definitely appreciate any "can't get that in Arizona!" or "only in Seattle!" type recommendations, but even if it's something more common but great ("best Italian" or whatever) that'd be good too. Doesn't HAVE to be in Capitol Hill but within an easy walk or public transportation commute would be best.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. In season at the end of August you'll find the following:

    Blueberries, blackberries, peaches, nectarines, apricots, corn, peppers, some mushrooms, potatoes, tomatoes, rhubarb might still be available, apples will be just coming into season.

    I would suggest a few things.

    1. Baguette Box is on Cap Hill. They use a lot of local and seasonal ingredients.
    2. Happy Hour at Tidbit Bistro. Excellent Italian and Spanish Tapas and they use seasonal produce and local meats.
    3. Salmon. Really anywhere you go in Seattle should have the good (AKA not farmed) stuff. It is salmon season still, so have as much as you can. Be warned though ,that once you have salmon in Seattle, you probably won't be able to eat it anywhere else.
    4. Quinn's is a great local spot. A little bit higher end, but they have a lot of very interesting things on the menu and their burgers are fantastic.
    5. There's a nice farmers market on Sundays, so head there and get some fresh produce.
    6. Via Tribunali for Pizza
    7. Cafe Presse

    For Pike Place, get a crumpet at the Crumpet Shop and then go to Beecher's for cheese. They have mac and cheese you can get to eat there or take out. It isn't a light meal, but it is good. If you like spicy, get the mariachi mac and cheese.


    1. In re touristy: In the sense that it is heavily visited by tourists, I cannot but agree. Lest anybody get a wrong idea, though, the Pike Place Market (not "Pike's" anything) is a fully functioning local resource for produce and culinary specialties. Do not approach this venue as if it were Faneuil Hall, as it is distinctly not, By charter, no chains are allowed and you will truly "meet the pruducer." I'm a 50+ year Market shopper, and post about it often, so click on mrnelso to read those. You can't really hurt yourself badly at the market (though dinner with wine at Matt's might come close). If you stay away from big sit-down places, you can get fabulously fed without much effort, beyond a lot of wandering around. Wander to Pike Place Chowder for seared scallop. Then down Post alley to Pike Place, and a few yards North to Mee Sum for baked Bao (BBQ pork...). South back to Jack's, for Cioppino (definitely do this), then across Pike Place to Uli's, for your choice of fresh sausages (get fries and maybe peppers and onions). Step just a few feet, then, across the aisle, to The Market Grill, for a halibut or salmon sandwich. Head North a few yards and find the stairs that go down, and down, and down, to El Puerco Lloron for some asada tacos. Then down, and down to the waterfront and Elliott's Oyster House at 3:00, when oysters are 50 cents at Oyster Happy Hour (they go up 50 cents or so every half houor, so order early).

      Patriciajane gives good advice, and I take nothing away from Via Tribunali, whose contribution to progress toward ever-broader horizons in pizza has been seminal and is much appreciated, but the locally-beloved Pagliacci has fed thousands of starving students grandly with robust pies and Pagliaccio salads for decades, and new locals like Tutta Bella (have the Solerno Pizza Enalata), Veraci (the best), in Ballard, are carving out their own niches with real style.

      Cheap eats are a lifelong persuit of mine, and I've posted often on the topic, so click mrnelso for those posts.

      1. Vios on 19th. If you can hit a farmer's market you just might get in on some huckleberries, probably the last of the season as they are showing up now. Only grown wild in the PNW, unable to be cultivated, they are probably the best single source of antioxidants, period. Piroshky Piroshky in the market as well for on the fly eats. Oh and please go to Cafe Presse for affordable fantastic french influenced food.

        1 Reply
        1. re: malarkey

          Thank you, all. I'm afraid I'm not going to have enough time to eat everything I want to while I'm there! I won't be there on a Sunday, so can't make it to the farmers' market, unfortunately. Was going to send my boyfriend (who lives there now) to seek some huckleberries for me but he's got other plans. Foiled! Any chance they'll be available among the produce vendors at Pike Pl.?
          I'm very much looking forward to my visit and appreciate the advice!