Cheap Eats: Columbia City’s Fish and Chips

A Fish and Chips spot with a neighborly sense of place

By Seattle Mag December 31, 1969

This article originally appeared in the May 2010 issue of Seattle magazine.


Steve Allen’s Emerald City Fish & Chips is a sight for sore eyes. The brightly lit corner shop’s shiny nautical light fixtures stand out along a stretch of Rainier Avenue largely devoted to nail shops and used-car lots. The neighborhood’s diverse crowd gathers shoulder to shoulder in the small space, waiting for cooked-to-order, cornmeal-batter-dipped hunks of fish (three-piece orders: $7.50 for cod or catfish, $8 for salmon, $9 for halibut) and chatting amiably. I’m partial to the juicy cod, though the lush fish slides away from the coating (which is a touch heavy) if you don’t eat quickly enough. The real standouts here are the tartar sauce (which has a touch of Sriracha hot chili sauce); the hand-cut, skin-on fries and the genuinely friendly vibe. The two times I’ve dropped in I’ve been greeted like family, and that makes a long wait for lunch seem just fine. Lunch and dinner daily. Columbia City, 3756 Rainier Ave. S 206.760.3474

Originally published in May 2010


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