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Aug 3, 2011 10:43 AM

Montreal foodie looking for recco's

Will be travelling from Seattle to San Diego in September. Looking for reccomendations what to eat in Seattle and perhaps also the Mt. Rainer and Mt St Helens area.
Originally from Europe, I've travelled all around Europe so I am quite accustomed to European cuisine and of course Montreal has French bistro cuisine down.

I am looking for moderately priced options and an occasional splurge for both breakfast/lunch/dinner. I like locally sourced foods, places with their own identity, have a weakness for good beer (being Belgian), mixology oriented bars and all types of ethnic cuisines. Montreal is not really known for their outstanding seafood, so I hope to get my fair share on the West Coast. Izakaya's are quite big in Vancouver, how's the situation in Seattle?

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  1. Izakayas are not so big here. There is Wann on 2nd Avenue near Lenora downtown, not sure if there are others. Lots of sushi, lots of Vietnamese, Thai, Mexican, and good Korean food if you don't mind a drive.

    For Belgian beer, try the Stumbling Monk on Capitol Hill and Quinn's Pub, on the same hill several blocks southwest. Quinn's is a gastropub and has some large format beers that may interest you.

    And since you are from Montreal, you can go to eltana bagels and tell us if they live up to the ones back home. They are supposed to be Montreal style, but I just think they are boring : )

    Quinn's Pub
    1001 E Pike St, Seattle, WA

    1. Montreal is one of North America's great eating cities, I hope you enjoy Seattle!

      Locally sourced foods and good beer selections are easy to come by in Seattle, the whole West Coast has a huge microbrew industry, much more like Belgium than Eastern Canada, though not necessarily in the style of Belgian beers. I would recommend checking out local brews all along your trip, every major city will have a few. In Seattle, you'll have a hard time finding a restaurant without at least 1 or 2 local brews, and others here I'm sure will recommend lots of good options.

      You'll find overall better ethnic food further south on your trip in San Francisco and Los Angeles; in Seattle, I'd concentrate on the local strengths, "Northwestern" food and seafood. For highly localized Northwestern food, you can't go wrong with such chowhound favorites as Quinn's (Gastropub), Lark (Northwestern), Poppy (hard to describe), Palace Kitchen (Northwestern), Tilth (Northwestern), and lots more I can't think of right now.

      re: Izakaya - not as established as in Vancouver for sure, but there are places -- check out Kushibar in Belltown or Makaewa in the International District.

      Palace Kitchen
      2030 5th Ave, Seattle, WA 98121

      1. I liked Wann Izakaya, I've only been once. I also liked Issian Stone grill which serves Izakaya food in Wallingford. Isian had good wings, good yakiton and yakitori on HH. Both have happy hours if you want to save a little money. I thought both compared well with Guu Garden which I visited last time I was in Vancouver.

        1. I second the recommendation for Quinn's they have excellent food. I suggest Brouwer's Cafe in Fremont for an almost limitless beer selection and well above average pub food. Seven Stars Szechuan for their amazing Dungenous Crab; Salumi for lunch (weekdays only). The Walrus & the Carpenter for oysters, Shiro's for sushi and Long's Provincial for a blend of Thai/French with a definite edge. (A true Chowhound destination.) Normally I would not recommend Maximillien's at the Market for someone coming from a good French food community; however, their mussels--fresh daily from nearby Whidbey Island--are an exceptional Pacific Northwest treat. (Go to the upstairs bar, not the downstairs restaurant as it has much better atmosphere and view.) Serious Pie, Matt's at the Market and Etta's seafood at the North end of the Market are worthy of your journey. Have a great visit and let us know what you liked.

          2401 2nd Ave, Seattle, WA

          309 3rd Ave S, Seattle, WA 98104

          5 Replies
          1. re: Leper

            Can't argue w/Leper on any of this except two things -- for Long's, I thought it was Vietnamese -- are you thinking of Joule? Anyway, regardless, I would definitely recommend Joule (Korean / Thai / French / something or other) or their newer spinoff, Revel. Also, the last time I was at Brouwer's, they had a much reduced menu -- don't know if that's a new thing or if that was just for that day (there was some kind of special event going on). Regardless, they still have a great beer selection.

            1. re: pusherman

              I'd go for Joule. Long's and their cousin Tamarind Tree are pretty inferior Vietnamese compared to what you can get in Montreal (at least it was 10 years ago when I went).

              Tamarind Tree
              1036 S Jackson St, Seattle, WA 98104

              1. re: HungWeiLo

                HungWei, what can you recommend for tasty Vietnamese?

                1. re: mrnelso

                  Either Huong Binh or Lemongrass. But my point is that stuff like that's already pretty prevalent in Montreal.

                  Haven't been in a while, but I remember Ben Thanh on Rainier was also pretty good? I don't remember the exact place - but they had an excellent off-menu goat hotpot.

                  Huong Binh Restaurant
                  1207 S Jackson St, Seattle, WA 98144

                  1. re: HungWeiLo

                    I like all three of these; Ben Thanh is a cut below Huong Binh for equivalent items, although BT serves a broader slate, including exotic meat stews, etc. Lemongrass has a more Central Viet focus, IIRC (have not been for a couple years since Huong Binh became the family favorite). But BT is my go to for take-out bun mit thong due to location.

                    Huong Binh Restaurant
                    1207 S Jackson St, Seattle, WA 98144

                    Ben Thanh Restaurant
                    2815 S Hanford St, Seattle, WA 98144