Dine Around Seattle is back! The twice yearly event is everyone’s opportunity to try some of Seattle’s most delicious restaurants for a $30 dinner or $15 lunch. While there are other events like this in the area, this is the original.
Today, Seattle Pockets welcomes guest blogger, Ginger Ahn!
To help create a little buzz for the event, I was invited to enjoy a fun evening checking out a few of the restaurants with the fine people of Dine Around Seattle. We started at Ponti, the seafood restaurant on the north edge of Queen Anne. I’d only been here once before, but I had good memories of the food. They served us two starters: crab spring rolls and fried oysters.
Both were delicious, but the fried oysters were really memorable. They were just lightly fried, so the oyster was crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. A definite must-try!
Then, to travel between the restaurants, they loaded us onto the Hales Brewery Bus. I’d never seen this double-decker beast before, but it turns out that it has a built-in bar on the bottom floor. It turns out beer tastes even better when it’s paired with a moving second-story view of Seattle at sunset.
The next restaurant was Cicchetti Kitchen (the little sister restaurant of Serafina). They provided us with some lovely appetizers as well that had a Mediterranean theme: spices, potatoes, hummus, and a creamy salad.
Then we were off to head down to Pike Place Market to hit Steelhead Diner, Cutter’s Crabhouse and Chan Seattle. If you have never been to Steelhead Diner, go immediately. It is (and has been) one of the best classic Seattle restaurants in town for years: fantastic seafood, wonderful atmosphere and great service. Chef Kevin Davis showcases a delicious selection of local oysters:
They followed the oysters with a remarkable Alaskan Ivory Troll King Salmon that had a white flesh that looked a bit like swordfish. The salmon was set off with a creamy polenta and tart-sweet macerated cherries. Dreamy.
By this point, we were getting a bit full, but there were still three restaurants to go. We rolled ourselves down the hill to Cutter’s for a quick stop, then back up the hill to Chan Seattle.
Chan is a fairly new restaurant in town and offers Korean fusion cuisine. They served us Spicy Pork Sliders and braised short rib. Now, if you’ve ever had Korean food before, you know that braised short ribs are pretty much a staple of that cuisine, and I can say that Chan did justice to the long history of that dish. The beef was tender and just fell apart at the touch of a fork.
(Photo: Chan Seattle)
As I was leaving, I asked about their happy hour deals, and apparently they offer happy hour pricing all night at the bar from Tuesday through Thursday, as well as in the restaurant 5-6:30pm and 9-close Tuesday – Saturday). I’ll definitely be going back.
Last stop was at Local 360, one of my old favorites. They treated us to a bread pudding dessert and more remarkably, cold-pressed Stumptown coffee served out of specially made beer bottles. I borrowed my neighbor’s glass for this photo as it was too late at night for me to have coffee. My bottle is in my fridge just waiting to be opened.
It was a wonderful evening with the Dine Around Seattle crew! A few more notes to help you enjoy your Dine Around experience:
- Check the website dinearoundseattle.org to see which restaurants are offering the deal
- Make a reservation! This is a popular event and the better-known places fill up quickly
- If you go to Steelhead Diner, I hear their crab & shrimp tater tots are to die for
- If you go to Cicchetti, sit upstairs where you can have a view of Lake Union and the Seattle skyline
- And finally, consider donating to charity through the Dine Around for a Difference program to support local food sources. More info available on the Dine Around website and at participating restaurants