Seattle/Le Messe

Seattle is a food lovers mecca with hundreds of eateries to satiate all budgets, tastes and appetites. On our three-day city break to the Emerald City, we discovered a few notables to add to your Seattle dining list.


Local favourite The Carlile Room (820 Pine) draws a busy theater crowd with the Paramount just kitty corner to the restaurant. It’s part of the Tom Douglas group of restaurants (the 13th in his stable), with Chef Dezi’s menu of plant-forward dishes.

Seattle/The Carlile Room
[Chickpea fava fritters]

The vibe is decidedly 70’s, with black and white concerts flickering above the tables.

Seattle/The Carlile Room Seattle/The Carlile Room
[Top to bottom: Seared scallops with roasted parsnip, Seared ahi tuna]

A few dishes we sampled—seared ahi tuna, flavourful chickpea fava fritters, seared scallops with roasted parsnip and Painted Hills fillet mignon— all hit the mark; when here check out their Book of Booze for a good selection of wines, cocktails and beer to pair with your meal.

Seattle-11 Seattle/Rider

An ode to Seattle’s logging and fishing industries, Rider (619 Pine Street) creates dishes that include all that delicious local seafood plus a wealth of locally-sourced ingredients for creative, flavourful and beautifully-presented food, showcasing Seattle-based Made Coffee.

Seattle/Rider Seattle/Rider

We enjoyed a hearty breakfast one morning and look forward to returning one day to explore their dinner menu. Rider is attached to boutique Hotel Theodore and includes many of the hotel’s design touches with a lot of beautiful floor tiling in their well-lit space that features an open wood-fired grill.

Uwajimaya Village (600 5th Avenue South) is a large Asian shopping space with a cool variety of family-run casual restaurants towards the back (reminiscent of T&T in Vancouver and Richmond). This is a great stop en route to the Seattle Pinball Museum, T-Mobile Park (Seattle Mariners), CenturyLink Field (Seattle Sounders FC, concerts, events) and Chinatown.

After a meal here, peruse the aisles to find specialities from China to the Philippines; there’s a good selection of local Seattle chocolate bars too.

Seattle/Steelhead Diner

You’ll find Steelhead Diner at Post Alley by Pike Place Market (95 Pine Street), a casual seafood-focused eatery serving up some awesome razor clam chowder, fish ‘n’ chips, crab cakes, cioppino, steaks, burgers and po’boys.

Seattle/Steelhead Diner
[Pan-seared Dungeness crab cake]

Even on a Monday evening in late January, the place was packed with what seemed like more locals than tourists. We were looking for an easy, filling dinner close to our hotel (Palihotel) and Steelhead delivered.

Seattle/Steelhead Diner
[Sautéed Oregon Petrale sole]

Chef/Partner Kevin Davis is a fly-fishing enthusiast: the interior is themed accordingly. Between the booths are collections of fishing lures encased in glass.

Seattle/Collections Cafe Seattle/Collections Cafe

If you’re hankering for lunch while exploring Chihuly Garden & Glass, consider the onsite Collections Café where under the glass of every table is as collection of antique items guaranteed to get the conversation flowing.


One building over is The Armory, with a large food court inside for an even greater variety of lunch and coffee options, from kebabs and meat pies to Mexican cuisine.

Seattle/Armory interior

Built in 1939 as the old Armory Building, it formerly housed the 146th Field Artillery and its arsenal of half-ton tanks.

Seattle/Le Messe

Le Messe (1903 Yale Place East) is the third in a collection of four Italian restaurants in and around Seattle. Executive Chef Thomas Dodd overseas the open kitchen in the center of the sleek, one-year old Eastlake eatery.

Seattle/Le Messe
[Warm dates, burrata, garlic crostini]

The small menu is divided into Raw/Vegetables, Pastas, Protein, Tastings and Pairings. We started with six Samish Pearls oysters on the half shell, followed by a delightful pairing of warm dates cooked in brown butter, salt and pepper, with burrata and garlic crostini.

This starter went down nicely with a glass of Washington’s Red Mountain ‘16 Fedelitas 40/40 (an enticing blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Malbec).

Seattle/Le Messe

Following these two shareable dishes came Zabuton steak, squid ink spaghetti (to share) and a beautiful black cod with lentils. We highly recommend getting outside the downtown core and enjoying a meal here.

General Harvest’s other three restaurants are East Anchor, Vendemmia, Raccolto plus G.H. Pasta Co., a new downtown pasta bar.

[Photos of Louis and Lola above the restaurant’s “Pope’s Table”]

Cozy, friendly Lola (2004 4th Avenue) has a rustic interior, Art Deco lamps and high ceilings, with a full range of options created by renowned chef/multi-restaurant owner Tom Douglas (together with wife Jackie Cross). Lola is an ode to Jackie’s grandmother Lola and her Greek love Louie.


A Greek-themed menu is front and center here, with Tom’s Favorite Breakfast (Mediterranean octopus, potatoes, bacon, radicchio, onions, Aleppo yogurt, soft-poached egg, toast) a wildly popular choice. There’s standard breakfast options too, for smaller appetites.

They’re also open for lunch, dinner, weekend brunch and drinks/desserts.

Food and wine lovers will want to head down in late March (28 to 31) for Taste Washington, a four-day event featuring over 235 wineries, 65 restaurants and a line-up of culinary talent. This is the ultimate way of getting up close and personal with Washington’s wineries.

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