If you’re reading this, then chances are you love food. You won’t eat just any food, you seek out excellent food. You seek out food that’s been lovingly crafted from seasonally available, local ingredients, selected at the peak of freshness, swiftly carried from source to chef within a matter of moments or within just a few hours, in order to ensure that all of the delightful flavors and nutrients are retained, and then expertly manipulated into textures, shapes, colors, and temperatures that tantalize all 5 of the sense. Food, in your eyes, shouldn’t just be delicious. It should be a full body experience that’s not only delightful to the senses, but also nourishing, sustainable, aesthetically pleasing, and wholly memorable. If this is the kind of food you’re looking for, dear foodie, look no further than these 18 phenomenal gastronomical experiences in the city of Seattle. Just as a mother would never rank her children in order of favorite to least, neither shall I rank these eateries. Instead, please explore them in alphabetical order.
Aerlume serves up some of the finest, most inventive seafood dishes in all of Seattle. Pop in for dinner or a nightcap, and ask to sit outside on their front patio area or the back balcony in order to watch the sunset over Puget Sound for an unforgettable dining experience.
Recommendation: Dungeness Crab Lettuce Wraps, Grilled Spanish Octopus, Oysters on River Rocks, Seared Jumbo Sea Scallops & Goats Milk Cheesecake with Sorbet & Edible Flowers
This elevated Italian restaurant and wine room is one of Seattle’s favorite places for date night. They offer guests a wide array of handmade and hand cut Italian pastas, and other Italian classics, with a modern, Pacific Northwest twist. Experience their tasting menu and drink parings for a tour of the senses unlike any other.
Recommendation: Seasonal Tasting Menu
Aqua by El Gaucho
Voted one of the best places to eat in Seattle, and currently one of the highest ranked restaurants in the city, Aqua by El Gaucho is another excellent place to celebrate the seafood and local flavors of the Pacific Northwest, in a bright, airy setting.
Recommendations: Hawaiian Smoked Poke, Lobster Bisque, Chilean Seabass
Charlotte Restaurant & Lounge
Located inside of Lotte Hotel Seattle, Charlotte Restaurant & Lounge is one of Seattle’s newest fine dining experiences. Under the guidance of Executive Chef Alexander La Motte, who has previously helped restaurants attain Michelin Stars, we were served a gorgeous meal featuring fresh, locally sourced ingredients, all expertly plated in an aesthetically perfect manner, not a single micro green out of place.
Recommendation: Rotating menu
This French fine dining experience includes French cuisine classics served with an elevated, modern twist, like poached egg dishes, caramelized sea scallops, Poulet Rôti, Soupe De Célerie-Racine, and many others. One of Seattle’s quintessential fine dining experiences. Copine has some of the most elegantly and expertly plated dishes I’ve ever seen, so prepare to feast your palette and your eyes on these creations.
Recommendations: Caramelized Sea Scallops, Poulet Rôti, Soupe De Célerie-Racine
This delightful seafood restaurant & crab house is located near Pike Place Market and has some of the freshest sushi we’ve ever eaten, anywhere in the world. It tasted exactly like what we had along the sea in Japan, and I have been dreaming about going back for seconds of that incredibly fresh crab roll ever since we first visited.
Recommendations: California Roll, Crab & Lobster Dip with Gluten Free Bread, Seared Rare Tuna Niçoise Salad, Chef’s Seasonal Salmon
Eden Hill Restaurant
This New American restaurant has some of the most expertly plated dishes in the city. Their tasting menu, offering a range of seasonal (read: ever-changing) dishes takes diners on a culinary journey that makes stops at nearly every one of the culinary world’s most challenging techniques. You can truly experience a new world of decadent flavors at Eden Hill Restaurant.
Recommendation: Abbreviated Grand Tasting Menu
General Porpoise Donuts
Located in the Capital Hill neighborhood, General Porpoise Donuts is Seattle’s favorite donut shop. They’re filled with seasonally available, handcrafted James, jellies, custards, creams, and they also serve coffee as well as espresso.
Recommendation: Rotating selection of seasonal donuts
Located on the ground floor of Four Seasons Hotel Seattle and named after Washington’s state bird, Goldfinch Tavern is reminiscent of watering holes of old, with a fresh, modern, Pacific Northwest twist. We enjoyed both dinner by the infinity pool via Goldfinch Tavern, as well as a beautiful brunch at therein dining room before heading back home to Michigan, and both meals were an absolute delight.
Recommendations: Vegan Chia Seed Pudding, Beet & Dungeness Crab Salad, Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict Over Kale or Hashbrowns
This farm to table fine dining establishment whips up a variety of vegan, vegetarian, and sustainably sourced, plant-based meals with refined and elegant plating.
Recommendation: Seasonal Tasting Menu
The London Plane
Part botanical florist studio, part restaurant, this space is any instagrammer’s dream. Primarily a takeout spot, this is a great place to grab and go have a picnic somewhere at a nearby park, down by the water, or on your way out to a nearby National Park. Call ahead to ask if they can prepare your food in reusable container that you supply, to reduce waste.
Recommendations: Squash-Kale Salad, Brunch Box, Snack Pack (similar to charcuterie without meat), Fresh Garden Salad
Sawyer is a rustic coastal eatery that creates new American dishes in a renovated former sawmill, that was named a James Beard semi-finalist for Best New Restaurant in America (The United States). With floor to ceiling windows that let in a tremendous amount of light, a watery color scheme, and a variety of sharable dishes or small plate tapas style meals, and an extensive drink menu, Sawyer was an instant favorite for us, out of all of the places we diner while in Seattle.
Recommendations: Albacore Tuna & Dungeness Crab Ceviche, Parmesan Roasted Potatoes with Buttermilk Ranch
Shaker + Spear
This restaurant was recommended to us by nearly everyone we asked in Seattle. Open for brunch and dinner, Shaker + Spear uses fresh, local, seasonally available ingredients to capture the flavors, colors, and textures of the Pacific Northwest. Their dishes are inventive, delightful, and oh so fresh!
Recommendations: Vegan Greek “Meat” Balls, Crunchy Sesame Peanut Shrimp, Lemon Roasted Rockfish, Charred Rapini
Starbucks Reserve Roastery
This immersive coffee experience celebrates the history and passion for roasting that has made Starbucks an international phenomenon. See coffee beans freshly roasted by the crafters employed here, try one of a kind, experimental drinks that haven’t hit other Starbucks yet, and enjoy a selection of small bites from pastries and pizzas to tapas from around the world. This Starbucks also offers drinks and dishes that aren’t available anywhere else.
Recommendations: Whiskey Barrel Aged Cold Brew, Espresso Flight, Uova in Purgatorio
Chef Shiro Kashiba, often referred to as “Sushi Sensei of Seattle”, opened Seattle’s very first sushi bar in the 1970s. Now on his 3rd fine dining restaurant, he displays awe-inspiring precision and expertise in each dish that he crafts at Sushi Kashiba, Seattle’s finest sushi restaurant. Since 2019, he has been the official Goodwill Ambassador of Japanese Cuisine, as appointed by the Japanese Government, and he has been cooking for celebrities, royalty, and politicians alike for decades, which further demonstrates his incredible knowledge of Japanese fine dining.
Recommendations: Omakase, Sashimi Tuna Poke, Agedashi Tofu, Tempura
The Nest Rooftop Bar & Restaurant
Located inside of the Thompson Hotel, this rooftop bar offers visitors sweeping views of the city, small plate snacks, and a wide selection of premium liquors, spirits, and handcrafted cocktails. No one under the age of 21 is permitted here.
Recommendations: Truffle Popcorn, Blistered Shishito Peppers
Umi Sake House
Umi Sake House is one of Seattle’s finest Japanese eateries. Their plating is fun, their ingredients are freshly caught each day right before the restaurant opens, and each roll is crafted with loving expertise. If you’re looking for something new to try for date night, this is it.
Recommendations: Spicy Coconut Lobster, Wakame Salad, Seafood Gyoza, Ahi Tuna Tower, Tempura Udon, Sushi Sampler
We didn’t get a chance to eat here during our visit, but we were told by several people that there is no better (or cuter) place to slurp fresh oysters in all of Seattle. On our next visit to Seattle, this place is at the top of our list of places to try.
Recommendations: Fresh Oysters, Idaho White Sturgeon Caviar, Small Plate with lettuces, champagne vinaigrette, snap peas, & crispy shallots