Food & Culture

Seattle’s Best Burgers, Ice Cream and Oysters

Bucket list-worthy burgers and bites you need to try at least once

By Naomi Tomky June 11, 2019


This article originally appeared in the June 2019 issue of Seattle Magazine.

This article appears in print in the June 2019 issue, as part of the 150 Must-Do Summer Experiences cover story. Click here to subscribe.

> Grab a bowl of chili ($5‒$20) from Mike’s Chili Parlor and load it up with cheese and onions (50 cents each) while you soak in the classically Seattle dive-bar vibe. Ballard; Facebook, “Mikes Chili Parlor”

> Eat a Dick’s Deluxe burger ($3.40) in the parking lot of the original location of Dick’s Drive-In, just the way people did when it opened in 1954. Wallingford,

> Taste Seattle-style chicken teriyaki ($8.15) at Toshi’s Teriyaki Grill, where the dish’s originator still serves his charbroiled, sweet-sauced culinary masterpiece with rice and salad. Mill Creek,

Molly Moon’s blackberry ice cream made with homemade blackberry jam. Courtesy of Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream

> Taste your way through Capitol Hill: Start with a coffee flight ($8‒$17) at the Starbucks Roastery (, move on to oysters and charcuterie at artisan food hall Melrose Market ( and finish with something sweet from Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream ( or Cupcake Royale (

> Visit a farmers market. Good times to go? Wednesdays at the diverse Columbia City market; Saturdays at the serious, food-only U-District market; or Sundays at the street-fair-style Ballard market, where cool crafts and clothes hold court with cauliflower. Various locations,

> Sip an Almost Perfect cocktail—Plantation pineapple rum, Averna, Cocchi Americano and other ingredients—($22) and nibble on chicken liver mousse ($12) in the Canlis bar while listening to eclectic adaptations, from top 40 to Pink Floyd, performed live by the bar’s pianist. This is Seattle’s most iconic restaurant, where mid-century style meets modern cuisine alongside a view to die for. Queen Anne,

> Slurp down happy-hour oysters ($2) sitting in Adirondack chairs around the oyster-shell firepit on the shore of Lake Union at Westward. Wallingford,

Deep Dive’s version of the Seattle Dog, complete with cocktail. Photo by Alex Crook

> Enjoy a Final Ward cocktail ($17)—Michter’s rye, maraschino liqueur, Chartreuse and citrus—at the Amazon Spheres’ Deep Dive bar. And for a mind-warping spin on a local specialty, try the Seattle dog ($18), served on a silver platter and topped with pink salmon caviar. South Lake Union,

> Eat geoduck (market price) and learn how to pronounce it (“gooey-duck”) as you enjoy a sustainable, local sushi experience created by the warm and hilarious chef Taichi Kitamura at Sushi Kappo Tamura. Eastlake,

> Pull dim sum from the cart at Hong Kong Dim Sum, where classics such as har gow (shrimp dumplings, $3.90) come out alongside specialties like fresh doughnut-stuffed rice rolls ($6.95). Bitter Lake,

> Grab a growler of Seattle’s beloved craft beer Manny’s pale ale ($7.30) at Georgetown Brewing Company’s tasting room—but not before you sample from all the taps (free). Georgetown,

> Watch planes land at Boeing Field while sipping a glass of Syrah ($13) at the Jet City Winery tasting room as you double down on two of the state’s most successful industries: wine and aviation. Georgetown,

> Cure what ails you with a quintessentially Seattle comfort food: a steaming bowl of Vietnamese noodle soup ($11) at Pho Bac Sup Shop, operated by the second generation of the family that brought pho to Seattle. Chinatown–International

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