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Seattle: Best Places To Eat In The North End
The North End
The north end of Seattle is my specific expertise. I can get my way around downtown and other cool Seattle areas, but the north end is my home and I know it like the back of my own hand. Haller Lake, Greenlake, Bitterlake, Northgate, Lake Forest Park, North City. You won't be short of great places to eat or get a fantastic treat when you're in north Seattle!
Because of this, I can give you an easy list of great places to eat that can only be found in the north end of Seattle and in Shoreline. So whether you're just visiting, or you live here and are looking for a new place to try, keep reading!
Beth's Cafe has been around since 1954 and is well known to anyone who has spent any decent amount of time in north Seattle. They are probably one of the smallest places you can dine at around here, but even with that in mind, people still line up every day to get their chance to eat at Beth's. They consistently have at least a 20 minute wait during breakfast and lunch rush, though you won't find a single person who isn't willing to take that wait.
They know it gets busy too, so during busy times, they won't let you come and sit at a table by yourself. They do this to prevent table hogging by those trying to reserve tables for their friends. Don't worry though, Beth's is still a great place to go solo, as they have single seats at the counter. You just can't have a table all to yourself unless there are at least two of you.
The service at Beth's is always excellent for such a small and extremely busy diner. They only pick the best chef's in town, because there are a lot of hungry customers that want their food without the long wait! Their waitresses are usually amazing as well. I've been in there a few times when the wait staff had been treated poorly by other patrons and it was obvious they'd been working all day, and when they came to my table, they ALWAYS have a smile and friendly attitude.
Of course it helps to leave a healthy tip whenever you're in there, because they WILL remember you. They don't need a tip to be a great staff anyway, but it doesn't hurt to be on their list of favorite customers.
In between breakfast, lunch and dinner rushes are probably the best times to go to Beth's Cafe, though I can tell you that they never last as long as you'd hope for. On top of that, they try to allow all of their staff to take quick breaks at those times (do you blame them?), so while you're food won't be cold when you get it, try to remember the delay is not a personal bash or a testimate to their service.
When you stop into Beth's Cafe, there are two things you MUST try:
1. The Six-Fifty Shake. This dreamy shake is made with peanut butter, chocolate and brownies. The shake is named after it's price and it's probably worth double what they charge. The taste is the best in the world and nothing beats it on a hot Seattle summer afternoon. Just remember to use your spoon because these shakes are 3 times thicker than molasses! You might also consider asking for a to-go cup, because I've never seen anyone finish one in one sitting.
2. The Country Benedict - this is Beth's version of Egg's Benedict and it is oh-so good. They aren't shy about portions either, so you can devour it knowing you got your $8 worth.
3. Beth's Famous 12-egg Omelette - This dish is not for light weights! It is one of the most famous breakfast dishes in Seattle and will leave you feeling 10 lbs heavier when you're done eating it. Yum!
This is one of my personal favorites when you're looking for the lazy sunday afternoon place to eat. It's in one of the quieter areas of north Seattle known as North City, and is usually only frequented by local elders.
They have one of the best turkey and gravy sandwiches, and you shouldn't leave there without trying their French toast!
PCC Natural Market (Greenlake)
PCC has one of THE BEST buffet bars in all of north Seattle. They offer food for vegans, vegetarians AND meat eaters, and to sweeten the deal - all of their ingredients are organic, hormone free and produce locally. How can you beat that?
For $7.99 I can go in there I usually get their rectangular take out box (made from recycled materials) and fill it to the brim with a little bit of everything. They almost always have my favorite tofu curry and veggies, which go great with their julienne potatoes. For another $1.99, my young song gets his favorite beef and veggie soup and we enjoy lunch on the PCC patio. Which works out as a bonus because we can recycle our food containers at their recycling bins right after you eat.
PCC's buffet is definitely one of those places you can go to eat and feel GREAT about it. The food is delicious, toxin free and all of it's containers are made from recyclables. The service is excellent and whenever we go to eat there, the sun magically comes out...
Kathy's was formerly Mr. Bill's, which was a long time favorite of north Seattle residents, since the 50's. Although it just won't be the same as Mr. Bill's, Kathy's has done a pretty good job of preserving the look and feel of the old place.
They also have fantastic food and are rarely too busy to serve you in a timely manner.
I have to give Suni's two thumbs up. Not just because they have terrific burgers, shakes and pizza, but also because they are one of the few places around that specifically seeks to employ eager local teenagers.
They have a great solar plexus atmosphere and give you the choice of eating inside, taking your food to go or dining on their sweat sun patio. Suni's is also in North City, which is a quiet part of town, so you won't have to worry about smoggy day's or crazy events happening while you enjoy your meal.
Laughing Ladies Cafe
Laughing Ladies Cafe is another great place to stop in during the summer. They have the best fresh hand-made sandwiches and savory ice cream. My favorite though, is the Chocolate Dream shake, which is made with oreo's and brownies. They whip it up so it's light and airy, and hits the spot just right.
On Friday's and Saturday's they also host local live music for their patrons and the rest of the time they provide a quiet place to chill on your computer (or theirs!) with their free wifi. They even cater to the lost culture of smokers, who can sit out front and enjoy the cool summer air while they eat and compute.
If you're looking for some good grub, Spud's is the best place in north Seattle to grab some of Seattle's finest seafood. They are a bit pricier then other places you could eat, but definitely not as high priced as any of the other seafood restaurants in town.
If I could recommend anything, it would be the cod and prawns. They bread them just right and they are rarely crunchy or overcooked.
Third Place Books (LFP)
Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park offers a unique environment that is especially friendly to parents. They have a small closed off play area for youngsters, a food court in view of the play area and plenty of great deals of books for everyone.
The Honey Bear Bakery is the most frequently visited food establishment inside Third Place Book's food court, and is highly recommended for anyone visiting for a first time.
If you have a chance to stick around, you'll also catch some competitive chess games played on Third Place Book's gigantic chess board.