Your Seattle Restaurant Questions Answered: Best Bento, Churros and Yum Cha

Plus: Which food trends will emerge in 2020
| Updated: January 22, 2020

If your New Year's resolution is to be more adventurous, then our editor-in-chief Chelsea Lin has some adventurous suggestions for your palate through our weekly Instagram Q&A, with places like the experimental and exquisite Eden Hill Provisions, or tapping into the trend of sustainable cooking. But if you like to stick to your favorites like bentos and churros, she's got you covered there too. 

Have a question for Chelsea? Submit it here

Restaurants that focus on sustainability (food, cooking process, packaging, etc.)?

Tilth is an obvious choice here, as they’ve been doing this long before it was trendy. I know Renee Erickson takes sourcing ingredients very seriously and is looking to get her restaurants away from plastics in the next year or so. Look into Local 360 and Sushi Kappo Tamura as well. 

Recs for bento box places? 

I wish these were more prevalent here… I know places like Kisaku that have a great bento option, but it’s more sit-down restaurant style than casual grab-and-go. By Tae used to do a bento, but you’d want to check in with them, as it may not be offered any more now that they’re so busy. 

What food and drink trends do you see coming for 2020? 

I think we’re going to see further acceptance and adoption of plant-based dishes and fake meat products. I think there may even be more people who give up drinking alcohol as well, so maybe we’ll see better mocktail options. And unfortunately, as we’re already starting to see, I think more of Seattle’s really prominent restaurant groups will start closing some locations or being more strategic about new openings.  

Sauerkraut fish soup. Yay or nay? 

Yay! Why not? I’m pretty much always a yay. 

Any new places in Queen Anne? 

In Upper Queen Anne, my new favorite spot is Eden Hill Provisions. In Lower Queen Anne, it’s Paju, but I also really like Lazy Susan. 

Where are the best churros? 

TNT Taqueria in Wallingford has made-to-order churros for a dollar each (or $11 for a dozen) that are pretty decent. A warm churro is always the best churro. 

Do you think people judge when they see us taking a photo of our meal before eating? 

Probably, but how much do you care? Personally, I am very careful about taking photos quickly when I’m eating out, mainly because I don’t like to make a big scene, and I don’t want the staff to interpret it as rude. I’m willing to settle for less than great photos because of it.

Best yum cha and best breakfast with fireplace!

I really like Fashion Dim Sum in Edmonds, though you have to order from a menu and not just pick items from the cart. As for a fireplace, Storyville Coffee at Pike Place Market has a cute fireplace and a few breakfasty items alongside their coffee. There’s also a cute outdoor covered area with a firepit at Armistice Coffee on Roosevelt. 

Where can I find Cuban guava pastries? (Pastelitos de guayaba)

I have a memory of trying this somewhere but can’t for the life of me remember where that was now… If anyone out there knows where this person can find some pastelitos, please let me know!

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