Sin of the week: Gluttony

My friend Mark has been visiting me in Seattle since Saturday afternoon. Mark and I have one of those weird sibling-like friendships that has lasted forever: we met in first grade and proceeded to go to the same elementary school, middle school, high school, and college. But honestly I’m a kind of mediocre tour guide in Seattle. My regular activities involve sitting on the internet, watching Netflix, and playing video games… so suffice to say, I don’t really know how to find entertainment in the city.

But the one thing I do know is where the good food is. So my main contribution to his trip has been dragging him to delicious lunches and dinners. That also means I’ve been in a perpetual food coma since Saturday, and will continue to be in one until I drive him to the airport Thursday afternoon.

Because my food addled brain cannot conceive of any other topic to write about, I’ll share where we’ve been eating. If you’re ever in Seattle, I highly recommend these places. We have hit up or are planning on hitting up:

  1. The Honey Hole
    Location: Capitol Hill
    Description: Do you want a delicious sandwich and great local beer? Yes, yes you do.
  2. The Unicorn
    Location: Capitol Hill
    Description: My favorite bar. I like to describe it as a bar designed by a 5 year old on LSD. The trippy decor is great, but the mixed drinks are great too. I devoured my Mango Drop the other night. And the Unicorn Jizz is legitimately good, and not just because I have the sense of humor of said 5 year old who designed the bar. Also, ridiculous unicorn hats:
  3. Dilettante’s
    Location: Various
    Description: Five dollar chocolate martini happy hour every day? Sign me up.
  4. Some random hot dog stand
    Location: Anywhere there are bars
    Description: If you need to satiate your drunken munchies, there’s nothing better than a Seattle dog: hot dog, cream cheese, and grilled onion on a toasted bun.
  5. Jai Thai
    Location: Fremont (NOT the shitty one in Capitol Hill)
    Description: There are a bajillion Thai places in Seattle, and a million that are awesome. Jai Thai is one of those. I’m sure you can name a better one, but Jai Thai is reasonably priced, has a diverse and consistently awesome menu, nails their Thai Iced Coffee, and is conveniently near by boyfriend’s place.
  6. Brouwer’s
    Location: Fremont
    Description: A Flemish cafe with 64 beers on tap, over 300 bottles of beer, and over 60 scotches. I don’t need to say anything more, but their fries are to die for too.
  7. The Pine Box
    Location: Capitol Hill
    Description: A mortuary that’s been converted into a pub, complete with booths constructed from church pews. It just opened and is a project from the same people behind Brouwer’s, and you can tell. Great beer selection, a randal that infuses a different beer every day with something delicious like coffee beans or cocoa nibs, and awesome pizza.
  8. Beecher’s Cheese
    Location: Pike Place Market
    Description: To paraphrase Mark’s reaction: “I don’t even really like cheese, but holy fuck.” Try the mac and cheese and the fresh cheese curds in olive oil and herbs. Those cheese curds are so fresh they were grass 24 hours ago. So goooood.
  9. La Carta de Oaxaca
    Location: Ballard
    Description: People complain that there’s no such thing as good Mexican food in Seattle, and I used to agree. Then I found La Carta. Holy fuck. This isn’t just good for Seattle, it’s good for anywhere. If you don’t try their mole, you’re missing out.
  10. Molly Moon’s
    Location: Various
    Description: Quite possibly the best ice cream I’ve ever had. It’s a close race between Molly Moon’s and Jeni’s in Columbus, OH, and I just can’t decide. My favorite flavors are the Balsamic Strawberry and the Salty Caramel, though the Theo Chocolate is probably the best chocolate ice cream I’ve had the opportunity to taste. And trust me, I’ve tried a lot of ice cream.
  11. Chiso
    Location: Fremont
    Description: I’m not a huge sushi person, but wow. The picture says it all:
  12. Dot’s Delicatessen
    Location: Fremont
    Description: This is honestly my favorite place on the list. I’ve tried dozens of different sandwiches at Dot’s, and every one is tied for “Best Sandwich I’ve Ever Had.” I never knew meat on bread could taste so divine. If you live in Seattle and aren’t a vegetarian, you need to go to Dot’s right. Now. I couldn’t decide on a single photo, so just go here and keep scrolling down.
  13. Paseo
    Location: Fremont, Ballard
    Description: This previously held the title of “Best Sandwich I’ve Ever Had” before Dot’s opened up across the street. But their Cuban Roast is still a damn delicious sandwich. You won’t need to eat for the rest of the day.
  14. Ray’s Boathouse
    Location: Ballard
    Description: Alright, I actually haven’t eaten here before, but it was universally recommended to me when I asked “Where’s a good somewhat fancy seafood place?” And after drooling over their menu, I can’t wait to try it out tomorrow. Apparently it also has a gorgeous view of the Puget Sound. This place ended up being pretty disappointingly average and way overpriced.
  15. Portage Bay Cafe
    Location: Various
    Description: Do you want a fancy brunch? Then you want this place. Everything is delicious. The french toast, the crab cakes eggs Benedict, the unlimited fresh berry topping bar…dear god

And those are just the places that I can fit into Mark’s schedule. I’d also highly recommend Marination Station (Hawaiian-Korean fusion tacos), Cantinetta (mindblowing Italian), the pupusas at Guanaco’s Tacos Pupuseria

tl;dr I will have consumed 98474387368 calories this week. Guess who’s going to hit the gym on overdrive next week…


  1. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    Jen, how could you leave off the fabulous piroshki places on Broadway? Those savory meat/veggie pies from the Ukraine are heaven.

  2. Brian says

    I’ve never forgiven the Broadway Jai Thai for replacing Angel’s, my hands-down favorite Thai place for over a decade.

    (To be honest, Angel’s self-combusted due to some bad timing and it really has nothing to do with Jai Thai. But I hold it against them ANYWAY.)

  3. Rick says

    You might try Ivar’s down on the water near Fremont and the I5 bridge… OK, it’s a childhood fave for me, but your mileage may vary.

  4. says

    Do any of the hot dog stands have veggie dogs? If not, then Seattle is not as awesome as Toronto, which is still the only place I know of where the hot dog stands (at least some of them) have veggie options. Also, what is mole?

  5. Katalina says

    Mole is a fabulous Mexican sauce that often has chocolate in it, although there are lots of kinds that don’t. But usually it’s known for its chocolate-having variety. Mmmmmmm.

  6. Azkyroth says

    Meanwhile, I just learned that there was a restaurant in Sacramento called Garlic Shack. Was. Past tense.


  7. cag says

    I have done the math and you are way out of line with your calorie count. It is only 98474387367.4 calories. Please pay attention to detail.

  8. Izzy says


    I need to bookmark this one! I am arranging trip to Seattle for work in May. Need good food places :)

    That and going scuba diving in the evening! :)

  9. Andy Groves says

    Whenever I’m in Seattle, I always try and sit at the sushi bar at Shiro’s on 2nd Street. The food is out of this world and Shiro is very cool.

    I also second Rick’s suggestion of Ivar’s.

  10. Kristine says

    Indian! Annapurna on the corner of Broadway and Denny has some of the best substances I’ve ever put in my mouth.

    Also, Seattle’s best thai food is kept at Thai Tom’s. It’s on the ave somewhere between 45th and 50th.

    Damn. I’m hungry now.

  11. Pteryxx says

    Thai Tom’s is at 4543 University Way, 206.548.9548, according to the business card I have carried in my wallet Since. 2000. I LIVED on Thai Tom’s while at the UW. Note: it’s very small and develops a line out the door during lunch. Get there early to stand in line, or go after the lunch rush or for dinner. Tom makes the best tom kha gai soup I have ever had at any Thai restaurant in the country.

  12. DaveyGTi says

    If you ever come to south east uk get in touch, I can show you at least as many awesome places to eat until you feel ill!

  13. Armored Scrum Object says

    My regular activities involve sitting on the internet, watching Netflix, and playing video games… so suffice to say, I don’t really know how to find entertainment in the city.

    Maybe I’m biased, having just taken a break from God Hand to obsessively refresh my blogroll (or was that the other way around?), but it sounds to me like you know how to find entertainment in any city.

    That said, I’ll see if I can convince any of my hosts up at the corporate mothership to check out some of these places the next time I need to visit. Last time I was in the area, I pretty much just went to Ivar’s and Lowell’s. Not that they were bad (I don’t even like seafood, and I’d eat at either again in a heartbeat), but they seemed a bit obvious.

  14. flib says

    There is an awesome Mexican place in Greenwood called Gordito’s. I can attest to it, even as a picky Californian who is used to many good Latin American restaurants.

  15. Gregory in Seattle says

    The Honey Hole is my absolute favorite restaurant. And Molly Moon makes fantastic ice cream. Beecher’s is excellent, and as for the rest… I know what I’m doing for the rest of the month :-)

  16. says

    My dentist in Seattle (Ballard Gentle Dental) was next door to Ray’s. They had the dentist chair with the world’s most beautiful view. My first visit was in December, and as I was getting my teeth cleaned, the sun set behind the Olympics and everything got grey and silhouettish. That easily ranks as my best moment in a dentist’s office, on or off nitrous oxide.

  17. says

    The only one of those places I”ve been is to Jai Thai, so I’m taking notes! Also, have you tried Agua Verde on Boat Street, right where Brooklyn ends? I went there years ago, and it’s awesome!

    Also, I’ve seen Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Wil Wheaton, Richard Dawkins and Sean Faircloth in and around frickin’ Seattle, all in a three-day span! (Also wrote about it on my blog, which is probably linked to my name here.) What do you mean you don’t know where to go for entertainment in Seattle?

  18. Thoughtful Feminist says

    There is something hypocritical and more than a little sad with an avowed feminist and female writer of seemingly normal proportions needing to end a blog post on Great Eats in Seattle with a line about calorie-counting and going to the gym.

    Because, you know, you can’t REALLY enjoy food without a healthy dose of fat-policing and exhortations about hitting the treadmill.

    Seriously, why is it so hard to own the fact that you like food without lamenting about calories or needing to go to the gym? THAT would be a feminist act.

  19. says

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