Where to Ring in the New Year in Seattle

Seattle promises New Year’s Eve celebrations aplenty, everything from classy multi-coursed feasts to fireworks to sparkling parties brimming with bubbly and live music. Slip on your finest party shoes, grab a noise-maker and prep the vocal chords for a little “Auld Lang Syne,” then opt for one of these festive neighborhood NYE events.

BALLARD
At Ethan Stowell’s Italian-inspired Staple and Fancy Mercantile, indulge in a special multiple-course dinner presented by Chef Brandon Karow. On the menu? Satisfying fare including duck egg raviolo, and Zeppole with mascarpone, lemon and wildflower honey. For reservations, dial 206.789.1200.

Ballard classic Bastille Café & Bar is going all out with Champagne, offering four different exploratory Champagne flights (ranging from $14-$29). Nearby, the French brasserie’s sibling restaurant, Stoneburner, will be pouring bubbles and wine from all over the world, including Lambrusco (pairings with charcuterie), Prosecco, Franciacorta and Champagne, as well as Washington’s own Syncline wines. For reservations, dial 206.789.5012.

Saunter down Ballard Avenue to Hot Cakes Molten Chocolate Cakery, open til 12:30 a.m. on New Year’s Eve, where sparkling cocktails will be served with every molten cake ordered. In the mood for a hot drink? Opt for one of its boozy beverages, such as the sipping caramel with mescal or the drinking chocolate with scotch and Solerno (a blood orange liqueur).

EASTSIDE
Plan to dine out in high style at Bellevue’s Monsoon East, where sibling chefs Sophie and Eric Banh will serve up a scrumptious Vietnamese feast, including Kusshi and Virginia oysters with mango granite and Saigon mignonette, Fuyu persimmon and Asian pear salad and steamed Alaskan black cod. The sweet stuff: double happiness dumplings or Monsoon’s special banana cake with coconut sauce. Snag your seats quickly: 425.635.1112.

Lucky Strike Lanes is hosting its annual Cirque Glow New Year’s Eve party, where acrobats, stilt-walkers, hoop performers and a juggler will enhance up your bowling and arcade game experience. The Seattle Seahawks Blue Thunder drum line will count down to midnight. Tickets start at $30. For a mere $10,000, you’ll get a private VIP room, your own bowling lanes and 10 gratis bottles of Moet bubbly.

Kirkland Performance Center kicks off a soul-infused night of music and dancing with New Year’s Rock and Soul Eve. Expect music by LeRoy Bell & His Only Friends and local blues band Red Jacket Mine. Starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $45 and up and include a glass of Champagne for the midnight toast.

QUEEN ANNE
For a pre-midnight feast, head to chef Ethan Stowell’s How To Cook A Wolf, where potato gnocchi and pork cheeks will highlight a four-course menu with an option of wine pairings. 

Take your pick of three happenin’ NYE bashes: Seattle Indulgence at EMP, featuring multiple dance floors, comedy, bars galore. The Chihuly Gardens’ Countdown to 2014 offers a festive gourmet menu, live music and dancing inside the Glasshouse, plus a host of beer, wine and cocktails. Tickets $200. And the Pacific Science Center’s Spectra 2014: New Year’s Under the Arches, a spectacular bash with fire sculptures, live music from KEXP and aerial performances. Tickets $100.

CAPITOL HILL
On the last night of 2013, Cap Hill pulls out all the stops. Head to any of the area’s restaurants for a romantic pre-party supper: Expect delicious feasts at Ethan Stowell’s Bar Cotto, Rione XIII and Anchovies & Olives (as well as Mkt. in Tangletown and his Belltown spot Tavolata). Or head to the quieter, tree-lined streets of north Capitol Hill, where chef Ericka Burke of Volunteer Park Café has planned a seasonal and decadent five-course meal ($95 per person), including duck breast salad, filet of beef with foraged mushrooms and a chocolate hazelnut torte with house-made brown butter ice cream.

DOWNTOWN
New Year’s Eve seems like thee perfect time to sit back and sway to the classical melodies of the Seattle Symphony as Ludovic Morlot and Jeff Tyzik join forces for a program featuring excerpts of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker, Gershwin’s famous Rhapsody in Blue with pianist Jon Kimura Parker, music from Star Wars and more. A post-concert countdown to midnight (plus party!) happens in Benaroya Hall’s Grand Lobby.  

PIKE PLACE MARKET
In the mood for a few laughs? Head to The Market Theater where Unexpected Productions’ improv group Xtreme Theatresports will ring in 2014 with its X-Treme New Year’s Theatersports Party, a rousing laugh-riot featuring improv comedians battling for the funniest skit (you be the judge). Then toast to the talent at midnight. Tickets $28-$40. 

WEST SEATTLE
Of course, you don’t have to be front-and-center among the crowds and chaos to get a view of the sparkly Space Needle fanfare. Bundle up and take in the fireworks from West Seattle’s Hamilton Viewpoint Park.

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