Your Seattle Restaurant Questions Answered: Where to Find Boozy Brunches, Middle Eastern Food and Dinner for One

Plus: Vietnamese egg coffee, New Orleans king cake and dive bars
| Updated: February 13, 2019
  • Capitol Hill's Aviv Hummus Bar
A spread from Aviv Hummus Bar

Our Instagram is a great place to find amazing photography and get the scoop on what's going on in the city. It's also where our dining/lifestyle editor, Chelsea Lin, answers reader questions about eating out in Seattle. Every Wednesday, she's on our story uncovering the best spots to satisfy your cravings. We've got her answers from the last two weeks gathered here so you don't have to miss a thing. 

Have a question for Chelsea? Submit here

Who has the best boozy brunch (I’m looking at you, bottomless mimosas)?
I’ve always been more of a Bloody Mary gal myself, but if you’re looking for the best bang for your buck, check out Goldfinch Tavern downtown. Their weekend brunch buffet is amazing and includes bottomless mimosas for $49.

Best dive bars?
Ballard has some real gems in this department, at least until they’re forced out by new construction. The Sloop is one of my favorites, and I also really love the Waterwheel Lounge.

Best places in Haller Lake, Bitter Lake and Lake City?
I actually live in the north part of the city, so I spend a fair amount of time in the area. I like Aloha Ramen in Lake City, and I’ve heard good things about Otto’s Smokehouse up there, too. That Asian Food Center on Aurora has a few good restaurants in the complex: Green Leaf has wonderful Vietnamese and the dim sum is pretty good at HK Dim Sum.

Best place to take a wealthy relative from out of town?
If this is a wealthy relative who’s paying for dinner, I recommend hitting up one of my favorite tasting menus, like Altura or Art of the Table. Canlis is a no-brainer, always, for both food and customer service.

Where’s the best New York style pizza?
Supreme in West Seattle and Big Mario’s, which has a number of locations now, are my favorites for New York-style slices. If you’ve got kids in your party, go to Frelard Pizza Company.

Best New Orleans style king cake?
Bakery Nouveau has king cake by the slice—if you want to reserve a whole one, I’d call in to one of the cafes and let them know before showing up.

Friendliest places for solo travellers to eat/drink?
I’d love to say that a solo diner can eat anywhere in Seattle and feel welcome, but I understand that it’s sometimes awkward to dine alone. Check out restaurants like JuneBaby, Sushi Kashiba or Opus Co, which are really coveted spots but easier to get into when you’re just a single seat.

Best larb salad in Seattle? Jamjuree is my #1
This is one of my very favorite dishes, and I’ve never had it at Jamjuree, so now I need to go! I really love the version at Amazing Thai Lao cuisine—they have a version made with duck on their Lao menu that’s delicious.

Best happy hour downtown Seattle?
It doesn’t have a huge menu, but I love Jarr Bar on Western. It’s small and charming and has great happy hour-appropriate foods and $5 glasses of wine, and the hours are great: 4 to 6 p.m. weekdays, late night Saturdays and all day on Sundays.

Best place for Vietnamese egg coffee?
You guys were so helpful with this, and I got many votes for Brother Joe in Georgetown, which does have a coffee with egg yolk and condensed milk on the menu. Thanks, team!

Best dinner in Columbia City?
There’s so much great food in Columbia City, and a really diverse assortment, from Senegalese to Filipino to American comfort. La Medusa, I think, is one of the most underrated restaurants in the city—I’ve loved every dish I’ve had there, particularly the pastas.

Best Japanese katsu curry?
The only dedicated Japanese curry shop in Seattle is Hurry Curry of Tokyo in South Lake Union. There, you pick your spice level and toppings like you would at any of the places in Japan. But Nana’s Green Tea has a really great karaage curry you should try, and the desserts are amazing, too.

What is your favorite place for a unique dessert for kids?
I think Korean shaved ice desserts, called bingsoo, are great for kids because they’re generally not terribly sweet but still piled into elaborate sundaes. There’s a new place called Milkie Milkie in Edmonds that I’m dying to check out, and Poke Fresh in Roosevelt is a good option in the city.  

Responsible allergen friendly eateries and bakeries (no soy or nuts)
I mentioned this a couple of weeks ago, but there’s a new place called Lucky Santo, and everything on the menu there is free of nuts, grains, soy, refined sugar and even canola oil. Let me know what you think!

Best Middle Eastern restaurant in the city? Moved from Michigan and struggling
For a very casual lunch or dinner based around hummus or falafel, the best in the city is at Aviv in Capitol Hill. The owner studied the street food scene of Tel Aviv extensively, and his food is legit. But Café Munir remains my favorite Lebanese restaurant—go on Sunday for the chef’s tasting menu for a really reasonably priced way to try much of the menu.

Best place for a son to take mom for a brunch or dinner date for two?
What a good son you are! Without knowing what kind of food your mom likes, I’d go with something that feels special without being romantic: Joule has a wonderful brunch buffet, and dinner is excellent, too. If you’re looking for something a little more casual, I can’t recommend the brunch (and baked goods) at the Wandering Goose enough.

I haven’t found anywhere that makes beef wellington in Seattle?!
There’s a place in Palm Springs that makes the best beef wellington, and it makes me wonder why it doesn’t show up on more menus here. I do know that Jak’s Grill has it on their menu of dinner specials, though I can’t vouch for its deliciousness. Copine in Ballard makes an excellent dish with duck that’s very similar to a Wellington—check it out!

Best place to take a group of adults for a birthday dessert?
R&M Desserts would be my first pick, because you can make a reservation and the desserts are great (I like the tarts best). There’s a cozy loft space upstairs—call and see if you can score that for your party.

Best eats in downtown Edmonds?
I’m a big fan of the Market, which has the best fish and chips, as well as a really good lobster roll and a short menu of other seafood-based dishes. I like Barkada a lot, too, and Salt & Iron is a classic.

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