As many in the Seattle metropolitan area furrow their brows at the darkening skies and chilly winds over the next several days, it’s not all doom and gloom. Snowy, wintry weather is a good opportunity to cozy up at a local restaurant with some piping hot comfort food. These are just a few favorite dishes that span the soup, stew, and hot pot scene (feel free to send in your own suggestions).
Beef rib bun bo hue suon bo from Pho Bac
In case you missed it over the holidays, Little Saigon’s Pho Bac “boat” restaurant is back. And that means some more of Seattle’s best Vietnamese broths served in diner-like digs (now with a gold disco ball). In addition to the signature pho, the menu now features beef rib bun bo hue suon bo, which has a spicy pineapple lemongrass beef broth and includes ribs, tendon, blood cake, and pork shrimp meatballs.
Mongolian Hot Pot from Little Sheep
For those looking for satisfyingly scalding Chinese hot pot, this spot is a good bet (with locations in Bellevue and the International District). Writer Jay Friedman recommends a yin-yang split of regular and spicy broths as well as a variety of dipping sauces for meats, vegetables, tofu, dumplings, noodles, and other items. Diners can linger, if the weather outside is particularly frightful.
Soft tofu soup at Kong Tofu House
This excellent Korean restaurant — which has outposts in Edmonds and the U District — is known for fiery bowls filled with selections of beef, pork, seafood, intestines, dumplings, vegetables, and more, all steaming and aromatic. Each order comes with a stone pot of rice and a decent selection of banchan — including a whole fried fish.
Shoyu ramen at Ooink
This low-key Capitol Hill spot above the QFC on Harvard Ave serves some of the best ramen around town, with silky broths and noodles that soak up the flavor nicely. The shoyu variety is a favorite, but for those that don’t mind a little more heat, the spicy kotteri ramen certainly delivers — with spice level customizable.
Pozole at El Paisano Rosticeria y Cocina
There are certainly other good hominy and pork stew options around town (including Georgetown’s Fonda La Catrina and Ballard’s La Carta de Oaxaca), but El Paisano keeps things admirably simple. The hearty pozole at this longtime, unassuming White Center restaurant brims with tender meat, and the service is cheerful, which should help keep spirits warm.