We get letters v.30: What are the “must visit food spots” in Seattle?

This popped into my inbox the other day. Tatiana wants to know where she should visit whilst in the Emerald City:


First I want to tell you how much I enjoy your blog. It’s fun and spirited and entertaining.

Secondly, I want to tell you that I know you get a lot of these requests and I’m still going to ask… sorry. : )

I will be coming through town in the middle of July for a two day visit. I will be eating about 4 meals while I’m there and I’d like your suggestions.

I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, leaning much more towards salt and spice and while ethnic food is wonderful, I’m not coming to Seattle for Vietnamese or Thai. Having said that though, we do not have a single good Mexican restaurant in Calgary so if there’s a taqueria out of this world – I’m in. I’m looking for the unique experience that you just can’t get anywhere else, something so uniquely Seattle that NOT to eat there would be a sacrilege. One item on my menu is Salumi. What else should I just not miss?

I really really appreciate your suggestions.


Tatiana K

Thank you for your e-mail Tatiana, as well as the compliments on the site.

I do get a fair amount of questions surrounding food recommendations in Seattle. So much so, that I’ve taken to creating a Google map that highlights fifteen different places close to downtown Seattle that are worth your time.

Keep in mind that this map was written with a tourists point of view in mind, rather than a traveler’s point of view or an obsessive food lover’s point of you. Some of the places are more for people watching and/or shopping rather than eating, so keep that in mind. I am working on a map designed for folks who are hard core into food, and several of the locations on the above map would be noticeably missing.

However, one item missing from the map that you’ve requested is that of a decent Mexican restaurant. The problem with that request is that finding great Mexican food in Seattle is like finding great Sushi in St. Louis – meaning that what is considered great Mexican in Seattle would only be considered passable in a Tucson.

Bearing that in mind, I’m recommending El Puerco Lloron at Pike Place Market (1501 Western Ave.). I’ve written about this place before (albeit indirectly), and it’s one of those “hit or miss” restaurants. People I’ve talked to either love the place or are indifferent to it. I don’t believe this is adequate enough to categorize it as “out of this world”. In my own opinion, it’s a step or two above the average Mexican place here in Seattle, but that’s somewhat of a low hurdle to overcome.

I hope this helps, and feel free to let me know if there are any other questions you would like to have answered.

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