We know a lot happened while we were away, but let's get real: what we missed most about Seattle is the ever-changing food scene (… and Trader Joe’s). Thankfully, the land border is back open, and we've pulled together a list of all the new must-try spots. Time to plan that next road trip, pronto.

1. Taku

Japanese, opened March 2020

Taku is an Osaka-influenced bar and street food spot with limited seating and divey décor. Top Chef alum Shota Nakajima’s karaage-focused menu brings you the ideal combo of cheeky drinks (Jello shots! Chicken-togarashi rims!) and Japanese comfort food.

706 E Pike St.

takuseattle.com

Taku Interior

2. Surrell

Pacific Northwest, opened March 2020

Serving exclusively Washington wines and European-inspired small bites, Surrell offers an upscale taste of the Pacific Northwest with a heavy focus on locality. Looking for more than just small bites? Don’t sleep on the micro-seasonal tasting menu.

2319 East Madison Street

surrellseattle.com

Surrell Entree

3. Tyger Tyger

Chinese, opened May 2020

A sibling to the beloved Lionhead restaurant, Tyger Tyger serves up some of the city’s best Sichuan. Come for your numbing favourites and stay for the fresh takes on classic dumplings and buns.

114 Republican Street

tygertygerseattle.com

Tyger Tyger Dan Dan Noodles

4. The Ballard Cut

Gastropub, opened June 2020

This whiskey-focused spot features house-made bitters, syrups and sodas. Food wise, The Ballard Cut leans local, showcasing fun veggie dishes and creative small plates in addition to their namesake “cuts” of meat.

5313 Ballard Ave NW Ste A

theballardcut.com

The Ballard Cut Entree

5. Biang Biang Noodles

Chinese, opened June 2020

Hand-pulled Xi’an noodles are the name of the game at Biang Biang Noodles. These made-to-order noodles star in both dry mix dishes like the popular mala spicy beef and soups featuring a selection of proteins.

601 E Pike St Unit 100

biangbiangnoodles.com

Biang Biang Noodles Entree

6. Milk Drunk

American, opened July 2020

Milk Drunk specializes in fun takes on the classic fried chicken sandwich (the Virginia Boy features hot honey and country ham!) and seasonally flavoured cereal-adorned soft serve. This soda-shoppe inspired neighborhood favourite also slings slushie cocktails and beer on tap.

2805 Beacon Ave S

themilkdrunk.com

Milk Drunk Meal

7. La Josie

Mexican, opened July 2020

La Josie celebrates tequila with an extensive drink menu featuring their infamous Ultimate Margarita. Their food menu doesn’t disappoint either with Mexican comfort dishes like fully dressed taquitos and sopitos.

514 E Pike St

lajosieseattle.com

La Josie Full Table

8. Local Tide

Seafood, opened August 2020

Local Tide offers seafood handhelds and small plates. Don’t miss their raved-about dungeness crab version of a classic lobster roll (weekends only) or rockfish banh mi.

401 N 36th St Ste 103

localtide.com

Local Tide Sandwich

9. Off Alley

Market cuisine, opened August 2020

Off Alley has a distinctly European vibe, with à la carte shared plates that highlight underutilized proteins. Vibrant wines and homegrown-grape shrubs are the perfect addition, cementing that Euro-vacation feel. (P.S. Yep, that pic is of duck head. Get into it.)

4902 ½ Rainier Ave S

offalleyseattle.com

Off Alley Entree

10. Mezzanotte

Italian, opened August 2020

House-made pastas are the star of the show at Mezzanotte, but their antipasti, classic cocktails and curated wine list are celebs in their own right. An antipasti standout, the Insalata Rusa features poached rabbit loin and salsa tonnata which feels like a fresh take on the classic vitello tonnata. Buon appetito!

1210 S Bailey St

messanotteseattle.com

Mezzanote Entree

11. Dreamland Diner

Diner, opened August 2020

Dreamland Diner is a truly unique, decidedly offbeat all day breakfast joint (and bar!) with garden-disco-galaxy vibes. Dreamy is an understatement when there’s a happy hour menu that features cereal-milk panna cotta and Tigersblood margaritas.

3401 Evanston Ave N

dreamlandfremont.com

Dreamland Diner Interior

12. Spice Bridge

Global Food Hall, opened September 2020

Spice Bridge is an international food hall/home of the Food Innovation Network’s Food Business Incubator program which supports immigrants and refugees. With food stalls ranging from Afghan to Senegalese to Khmer, check out the schedule on their website to see what stalls are open when so you can try something new and delicious.

14200 Tukwila International Blvd Ste 141

foodinnovationnetwork.org/food-hall

Spice Bridge Entree From Theary Cambodian Foods

13. Taco City

Mexican, opened September 2020

The aptly named Taco City serves up an array of tacos (including impossible chorizo). Cali-style fries and creative margaritas make it the perfect pit stop (or permanent haunt!)

5212 Rainier Ave S

tacocitysea.com

Taco City Entree

14. Sabine

Café, opened October 2020

Sabine serves all day brunch with a Mediterranean feel (think Turkish eggs and za’atar potatoes!) Their morning coffee and tea game is strong and even features adaptogenic lattes and CBD powder add-ons.

5307 Ballard Ave NW

sabineseattle.com

Sabine Dip

15. Remedium Island Grill

Pacific Island, opened October 2020

Remedium Island Grill has roots throughout the Pacific Islands and honours them by serving Hawaiian, Filipino, Guamanian and coastal Vietnamese cuisine. From Spam musubi to pork belly sisig tacos, they’re slinging tons of culinary favourites in one place. 

1449 E Pine St

remediumislandgrill.com

Remedium Island Grill Feast

16. Secret Congee

South-East Asian, Opened October 2020

For those in the know, Secret Congee is a secret no longer. It’s a specialty congee spot that takes its flavour inspiration from all over South-East Asia. Don’t miss their tom yum shrimp congee, and definitely add on youtiao crispy fried dough for dip-ability and texture.

4409 Wallingford Ave N

secretcongee.com

Secret Congee Entree

17. Katsu-ya

Japanese, opened October 2020

This LA sushi staple opened their first Seattle location and of course, it doesn’t disappoint. Chef Katsuya is the inventor of the now-classic crispy rice with spicy tuna, so you may want to double up on that. You know, for research purposes.

122 Westlake Ave N

katsu-yagroup.com

Katsu-ya Entree

18. Stella

Italian, opened October 2020

Located at the Hotel Sorrento, Stella features coastal-Italian inspired cuisine with a spotlight on local ingredients. Small shared plates, Italian classics like chicken piccata and perfectly-punny cocktails (who can resist the “C’est Magni-Fig”?) make for an evening to remember.

900 Madison St

stellaseattle.com

Stella Table Of Dishes

19. Chengdu Taste

Chinese, opened October 2020

An L.A. transplant, Chengdu Taste is a famed Sichuan chain that just opened its first Seattle location. Classics like toothpick lamb with cumin and cold mung bean jelly noodles are sure to excite.

504 5th Ave Ste 106

fetail.com/storev2/shop?store_id=31

Chengdu Taste Entree

20. Boombox Bar

American, opened December 2020

Boombox Bar is a neon 80s/90s themed cocktail bar slinging burgers, sandwiches and glowing cocktails. Enjoy a jackfruit reuben and a flamingo slush floaty while your friends belt out karaoke.

9608 16th Ave SW

boomboxbar.com

Boombox Bar Entree

21. Light Sleeper

Italian, opened December 2020

A wine bar that goes beyond the bottle, Light Sleeper also serves up a selection of creative pizzas and small plates. You can make any pizza GF and/or vegan and word is they’re pretty delicious.

1424 11th Ave Ste D

lightsleeperseattle.com

Light Sleeper Wines

22. Communion R&B

Southern, opened December 2020

Communion R&B serves classic Soul Food with a Seattle twist alongside dishes inspired by Vietnamese and Ethiopian cuisine. Don't miss the neck-bone stew, which is a tribute to the owner’s mother.

2350 E Union St

communionseattle.com

Communion R&B Dishes

23. Flavor Lao Bowl

Laotian, opened January 2021

Flavor Lao Bowl serves both Laotian cuisine and ready-to-eat hotpots. These Laotian hotpots are unique in that they are made to order and delivered to your table ready to devour. The non-hotpot side of the menu features standout dishes like Lao pork sausages and sweet and savory beef jerky. 

7821 Aurora Ave N

flavorlaobowl.com

Flavor Lao Bowl Dishes

24. Cycle Dogs

American, opened March 2021

Cycle Dogs is a beloved food truck turned restaurant serving vegan takes on fast food. From the hangry style fries featuring fry sauce, vegan American cheese and grilled onions to the big mick burger (their take on a burger from you know where), you’re bound to leave satisfied.

cycle-dogs.square.site

Cycle Dogs Sandwich

25. Aki Japanese Kushiyaki

Japanese, opened March 2021

Aki Japanese Kushiyaki is a modern Japanese restaurant with focus on kushiyaki with binchotan charcoal. As of now only the 13-course omakase style meal is offered, so get ready for two hours of ingredient-driven plates (including A5 wagyu from Japan!)

2106 E Madison St

akikushiyaki.com

Aki Japanese Kushiyaki

26. 84 Yesler

Seafood, opened April 2021

84 Yesler is an open-kitchen seafood-focused restaurant with inventive small plates (octopus bacon! parmesan churros!) as well as house-made pastas and seasonal meat and fish.

84 Yesler Way

84-yesler.com

84 Yesler Small Plate

27. Shewa-Ber

Ethiopian, opened April 2021

Serving both Ethiopian and Eritrean cuisine, Shewa-Ber prepares a wide-range of dishes from both regions. Their wats and injera are especially beloved but a secret standout is the coffee - they roast green coffee beans over an open flame then grind and brew your cup in a traditional urn.

1801 Jackson St

Shewa-ber.com

Shewa-Ber Wat

28. Finch and Pine

Café, opened May 2021

A café specializing in vegan, veggie and pescatarian cuisine, Finch and Pine is a daytime superstar with something for everyone. Tartines, pastries and snacks are available daily but on the weekends brunch service includes favourites like smoked trumpet mushroom hash and huckleberry pancakes. Seasonal morning cocktails are adorned with house-made speciality syrups, as if you needed another reason to brunch. 

711 Bellevue Ave E Ste 100

finchandpine.com

Finch and Pine Toast

29. Cedar and Elm

Pacific Northwest, opened May 2021

James Beard Award-winning Chef Jason Wilson helms Cedar and Elm, a restaurant inside a new hotel and spa, The Lodge. The food is driven by the seasons and Wilson works closely with farmers and purveyors throughout the region in order to do this. It’s worth the drive to try the standouts, including truffle and corn ravioli with foraged chanterelles and chips and dip that include applewood smoked salmon roe.

14477 Juanita Dr NE

thelodgeatstedward.com/cedar-elm

Cedar and Elm Pasta

30. The Potlatch Bistro

Bistro, opened May 2021

Located at the Edmonds Waterfront Center, The Potlatch Bistro serves seaside classics like fish and chips and seasonal chowder that are perfect for an afternoon along the waterfront. They also have a program that addresses food insecurity among seniors by providing lunch to those in need. Pay it forward while you enjoy a delicious meal! 

220 Railroad Ave

potlatchbistro.com

Lunch At The Potlatch Bistro

31. In the Heart

New Orleans, opened June 2021

New Orleans inspired speakeasy, In the Heart serves classic Big Easy cocktails (hurricane! sazerac!) as well as Creole cuisine. Order a sampler plate so you can try the gumbo, mac & cheese and red beans & rice in one fell swoop.

(Alley entrance) 4547 California Ave SW

likalove.com/pages/intheheart

In The Heart Cocktail

32. Autumn

Pacific Northwest, opened July 2021

Seasonality and perfect pasta meet at Autumn. Chef Brian Clevenger is known for his pasta abilities (pastabilities?) and he continues to impress at the newest member of the General Harvest Restaurant team. Even though you come for the pasta, definitely share some starters with friends because you don’t want to miss their panisse with comte and black garlic aioli or smoked onion venison tartare. 

6726 Greeenwood Ave N

autumnseattle.com

Autumn Pasta

33. Karachi Cowboys

Indian/Pakistani, opened July 2021

What started as a pop-up back in 2019, Karachi Cowboys has cemented itself as a brick-and-mortar location. Now you can order classics like chana masala as well as Texas-inspired dishes like aloo sliders with house-made BBQ sauce and mango slaw any day of the week. 

1517 12th Ave Ste 100

karachicowboys.com

Karachi Cowboys

34. Crumby Sandwich & Spirits

American, opened July 2021

Brought to you by a husband-and-wife team, Crumby Sandwich & Spirits serves next-level sandwiches (the salumi has pesto pasta salad on it!) and small bites as well as creative cocktails (Who You Gonna Call? featuring ghost pepper, genius.). They also present regular pop-up series featuring other small, local businesses.

709 N 35th St

crumbysandwiches.kitchen

Crumby Sandwich

35. The Peasant

Pacific Northwest, opened July 2021

The Peasant is not your regular tasting menu restaurant. Brought to you by Beast and Cleaver - a famed nose to tail butcher shop - this menu changes every night because of their whole animal butchery program. But as a sample, you can expect items like koji aged beef with green garlic butter or duck pate en croute. 

2362 NW 80th St

thepeasant.com

The Peasant Entree

36. Oakey’s Tex-Mex

Tex-Mex, opened July/August 2021

From the people who brought you Wood Shop BBQ, it’s the Tex-Mex you’ve always dreamt of. Killer tacos, burritos and enchiladas filled with things like al pastor pork belly, crispy cauliflower, carnitas verde and more. Plus, there’s yellow queso in droves and you can even smother your burrito in it.

2524 S Jackson St

oakystextmex.com

Oakey's Tex-Mex

37. TIDAL+

Seafood, opened August 2021

Tidal+ is the new on-site seafood restaurant inside the Hyatt at Olive 8. From fried oyster tacos to smokey salmon cobb salads, there’s bound to be something for everyone. Don’t like seafood? They also serve a mean burger.

1635 8th Ave

hyatt.com/en-US/hotel/Washington/hyatt-at-olive-8/seahs/dining

Tidal+ Burger

38. Myungin Dumplings

Korean, opened August 2021

The popular LA Korean dumpling spot, Myungin Dumplings opens their first outpost in Seattle. Featuring a wide variety of dumplings and buns as well as noodle soups and their famous fried chicken, this is a must-go spot!

33310 Pacific Hwy S Ste 408

myugindumplings.net

Myungin Dumplings

39. SZN

Korean/Mexican Fusion, opened August 2021

SZN offers Korean/Mexican fusion dishes like pork burritos stuffed with kimchi rice, cheese, cucumber and sriracha as well as twists on American classics like kimchi mac and cheese. If you’re not feeling fusion, Korean classics like bibimbap and bulgogi barbecue are also available.

823 5th Ave N

sznseattle.com

SZN

40. Tomo

Japanese, opened September 2021

Tomo serves Japanese cuisine inspired by PNW ingredients and Venezuelan flavors, all under the umbrella of mico-seasonality. Everything is ethically sourced so you can feel good about your trip to this casual fine dining restaurant. Right now, there are two tasting menu options available nightly, as well as lunch service.

9811 16th Ave SW

tomoseattle.com

Tomo Dessert

41. El Cubano

Cuban, opened September 2021

Aptly named, El Cubano is a Cuban counter service/take-out/delivery spot with sandwiches and classic Cuban plates. Go for a twist on the classic and order a Tampa cubano which comes with Genoa salami.

19920 Aurora Ave N

elcubanotogo.com

El Cubano Sandwich

42. DwnUndr

American, opened September 2021

DwnUndr is a restaurant and bar inside Hotel 116 serving American comfort food alongside games like mini-golf, cornhole and bar-top chess. They pride themselves on organic, seasonal fare while making sure you have a fun time. Smoked salmon potato skins (with goat cheese, pickled onions and capers) are a creative take on a breakfast bagel that you shouldn’t forgo! P.S. They also provide Hotel 116’s room service.

625 116th Ave NE

dwnundr.net

DwnUndr Plates

43. Bourbon Steak Seattle

Steakhouse, opened October 2021

Chef Michael Mina opened a Seattle location of the famed Bourbon Steak. Highlighting ingredients of the PNW, Mina serves steakhouse classics as well as creative seafood dishes (lobster pot pie, anyone?)

1433 4th Ave

michaelmina.net/restaurants/bourbon-steak/seattle

Bourbon Steak

44. Kricket Club

Indian, opened October 2021

Kricket Club is Chef Preeti Agarwal’s upscale take on Mubai and New Delhi street food. The restaurant has a comprehensive menu offering inventive dishes, like vada pao (beetroot croquettes with ghati masala and shishito on a house-made bun).

2404 NE 65th St

kricketclub.com

Kricket Club Entrees

45. Pizzeria La Rocca

Italian, opened October 2021

Pizzeria La Rocca is a dine-in pizzeria with artisan pizza, pasta and small plates. There are twenty incredible looking pizzas on their menu, so come hungry because it’s hard to choose just one! (Looking at you quattro formaggi with mozz, parm, gorgonzola and feta. And you supreme with mozz, arugula, prosciutto crudo, burrata and pecorino.)

8404 Greenwood Ave N

pizzalarocca.com

 Pizzeria La Rocca