Food & Culture

The 2018 Seattle Restaurant Trend-O-Meter

Here are our staff picks for this year’s dining trends: those we love, and those we’d love to never see again

By Chelsea Lin August 16, 2018


This article originally appeared in the September 2018 issue of Seattle Magazine.

This article appears in print as the cover story of the September 2018 issue. Read more from the Best of the Best Restaurants feature story hereClick here to subscribe.

Listed from “those we love” to “those we’d love to never see again”

Jewish delis
Seattle is on the brink of multiple Jewish deli openings, such as Dingfelder’s Delicatessen on Capitol Hill and Schmaltzy’s in Ballard. Gilbert’s on Main in Bellevue finally has some competition. Make ours with extra pastrami, please.

Better Chinese food
The recent influx of upscale imports and regional restaurants in Seattle and on the Eastside (Baron’s Xi’an Kitchen and Bar, Little Chengdu, Sizzling Pot King, etc.) means we no longer have to drive to Richmond, British Columbia, for the likes of great dumplings or spicy Hunan.

Plant-based everything
Lesson learned: Bacon doesn’t have a place in every dish, even if it’s tempeh bacon.

Cultural appropriation
Is there a way to celebrate international ingredients and cuisines—even if it’s not the one we grew up eating—and also be racially and culturally sensitive? Thankfully, Seattle’s food scene has mostly avoided any major disputes (sorry, Portland), but let’s keep our emphasis on celebrating rather than appropriating.

Service charge included
Fair wages = great. Including a 20 percent service charge and also leaving a line for additional tip to confuse customers = super not cool.

No more CBD lattes
King County Public Health put the kibosh on Hitchcock Café serving lattes boosted with CBD (cannabidiol). Don’t be such a buzzkill, man.

Menus that are impossible to figure out
Do we order two large plates and three small? Or one main, two salads and a couple of sides? What if we don’t wanna share?

Ultra-expensive cocktails
Happy to pay $20 for a Boba Fett mug full of pisco at Canon—unhappy when the hotel bar starts charging $20 for an old fashioned.

Terrible service
Just kidding, this is nothing new. Do your thing, Seattle. But could you be a little nicer about it?


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