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Oct 7, 2010 01:14 PM

Off the Radar

When people ask “where should I eat” in connection with a special occasion, it occurs to me that some places have dropped off the Chowhound radar, and I’m wondering why. Canlis, Café Juanita, Crush, Rovers, Chez Shea and a number of other places get frequently mentioned. Much less frequently, places like Campagne pop up, and I’ve not seen either Earth and Ocean or The Georgian mentioned for quite some time now. I’m wondering why these places are so routinely ignored. The Georgian, in particular, has one of the most beautiful rooms in town, seemingly perfect for a special occasion. Is Gavin Stephenson’s food that inferior to the other places most commonly recommended by Chowhounds? I confess to not having eaten at The Georgian, or Earth and Ocean, or Campagne for a long time, so don’t have an opinion. But I’m curious.

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  1. For me, the three you mentioned all have 'fatal' flaws. I don't like the dining room at The Georgian because it is lit up like a cafeteria. The last few times I ate at Earth and Ocean, I was totally underwhelmed with the food. Campagne turned me off because they won't do their cheese plate at a proper temperature. Le Gourmand should be included more often, imo.

    1. A good question deserves a good guess: I think it's the "Shiny New Thing"/hip phenomenon at work, fueled by boards like this one.

      When they started putting webcams up on CA and HI surf breaks, something(s) like this happened. And it worked out great sometimes--for riders that went the other way and had places to themselves. Then again breaks don't typically go out of business because of the Shiny New Beach.

      1. Both Earth and Ocean and The Georgian Room are in hotels. No one is interested in hotel eateries anymore. Overpriced.

        I can't comment on Campagne other than it may also be considered a hotel "eatery" given its proximity to the Inn at the Market.

        2 Replies
        1. re: firecracker

          Earth & Ocean has a reasonably priced lunch, but the last time I was there, service was abysmally slow even though the restaurant was almost empty and the soup had no seasoning in it whatsoever. Both people who ordered it at my table (myself included) had to salt & pepper it.

          1. re: firecracker

            I get what you mean about hotels but it seems to me this has changed some lately, and not just in Seattle. I'm thinking of great sushi I had in Fontainebleau in Miami as well as Bokka in Hotel 1000 and Andaluca in the Mayflower in downtown Seattle.

          2. Can only speak to Campagne - I go there every few years. I like the ambiance and service and wine, but the menu always seems so rich to me...butter everywhere and in everything. I think many of us in the NW have become unaccustomed to that style of French cooking.

            1. the georgian (formerly "room") is, indeed, the most beautiful dining venue in seattle and, when the hotel was part of the four seasons group, it served exquisite food with amazing service. as a fairmont, it has dipped to merely fairmont standards; adequate provender, acceptable service but hardly worth mentioning at its prices in a city with far better. btw, i am unhappy to report that the new four seasons has reversed the equation by serving terrific food in an dull and overwhelmingly beige atmosphere; the spectacular view somewhat compensates in daylight but, after dark, it feels like a corporate cafeteria.