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Seriously Underrated Restaurants in Seattle, Mapped

The unsung heroes of the local dining scene

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Seattle's restaurant scene is hot stuff: New establishments open at an impressive clip, attracting the lion's share of media attention, while others seem to have cemented their permanent placement in the collective psyche.

But what of the hidden gems, the neighborhood favorites that make outstanding food without the praise showered on the shinier spots? Maybe they're way off the beaten path. Maybe they don't have dedicated PR teams.

Whatever the case, they deserve more love. With that in mind, here's a map highlighting 13 of Seattle's seriously underrated restaurants. If you notice any changes to services listed or have suggestions for additions to consider, send us a tip.

Note: All of the places listed offer takeout and/or delivery options, but a handful also have limited onsite seating based on what’s currently allowed. The level of service offered is indicated on each map point. However, this should not be taken as endorsement for dining in, as there are still safety concerns: for updated information on local coronavirus cases, please visit the official King County COVID page. Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Bongos

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6501 Aurora Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 420-8548
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Despite doing brisk business, it seems this Caribbean-themed restaurant is on the radar of only those in the neighborhood; otherwise, it's not nearly as celebrated as similar shops like Un Bien and Paseo. But the sandwich and plate selection here is much broader, and the flavors just as indulgent, with ingredients like braised pork, jerk chicken, yucca fries, and fried plantains. Food is served on the outside patio and to-go.

2. Copine

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6460 24th Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107
(206) 258-2467
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Copine’s elegant meals make this Ballard restaurant a great pick for a special occasion. Chef Shaun McCrain brings French incluences and New York City cooking chops to each precisely composed dish, whether for the prix fixe Sunday dinners or the a la carte dishes served the rest of the week. The dining room is currently closed, but these elegant meals are available to go, with dishes like charred spring squash with red wine vinaigrette, grilled bavette steak, and thyme dinner rolls.

3. Brimmer & Heeltap

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425 NW Market St
Seattle, WA 98107
(206) 420-2534
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Through a few leadership changes in the kitchen and behind the bar, Brimmer and Heeltap remains one of the city’s strongest restaurants. Set in a lovely space in Ballard, complete with a darling patio, Brimmer hasn’t been afraid to reinvent itself. The food here is always fun, with bites like wild mushroom and nettle dumplings, whole artichoke with ramp aioli, and Manila clams with cider broth, all of which pair well with the top notch cocktail list. The restaurant is open for limited dine-in as well as to-go orders.

4. Kokkaku

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6904, 2208 N 45th St
Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 588-1568
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This relaxed Japanese steakhouse in Wallingford is one of the more underrated meat purveyors in the city. The emphasis here is on whole-animal butchery and premium cuts sold at moderate prices. There’s a wagyu kainomi heat-at-home set for two, which includes salted vanilla pudding for dessert. There are limited dine-in options as well.

5. Le Coin

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4201 Fremont Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 708-7207
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Lively Fremont restaurant Le Coin brings French influences to Northwest ingredients. The open kitchen makes for a fun dining experience, as cooks whip up bistro fare like seared foie gras, steaks, and sablefish with oyster mushrooms. Brunch is special too, with a similar, Northwest-French focus on seafood, meat, and vegetables. The restaurant is open for in-house dining and to-go orders.

6. Union Saloon

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3645 Wallingford Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 547-2280
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Wallingford’s Union Saloon is flying criminally under the radar. The restaurant maintains a convivial combination of neighborhood watering hole and high-brow comfort food. The kitchen composes dishes that range from thoughtful seasonal vegetable small plates to downright delicious twists on comfort food like barbecue brisket and fried chicken. The attention to detail here makes it clear this is a labor of love. The restaurant is open for in-house dining and to-go orders.

7. Omega Ouzeri

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1529 14th Ave
Seattle, WA 98122
(206) 257-4515
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Omega Ouzeri's bright white and blue space on Capitol Hill transports diners to the Greek isles, where fresh seafood lands on the plate with an array of fresh ingredients from a deeply flavorful playbook. Meals can be assembled family-style, from multiple shared plates, and it all goes down smoothly with sips of ouzo. The restaurant is open for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

8. Zaika

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1100 Pike St
Seattle, WA 98101
(206) 432-9355
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This jewel-toned Indian restaurant on Capitol Hill specializes in creative fusion dishes, like tandoori burgers and a Malai chicken twist on fondue, alongside staples like curry, thalis, and samosas. The restaurant is currently open for dine-in and takeout.

A thali with naan, rice, and a variety of small bowls filled with sauces and vegetables.
A meat thali from Zaika with garlic naan.
Suzi Pratt for Eater

9. Reckless Noodle House and Cocktails

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2519 S Jackson St
Seattle, WA 98144
(206) 329-5499
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This Central District restaurant specializes in bold flavors wielded expertly in dishes like roast duck crispy rolls with sambal hoisin, papaya salad, caramelized pork fresh rolls with Hanoi fish sauce, curry vermicelli bowl, and the tingly ma la braised beef noodles. Nothing about this place feels particularly reckless, just plain dialed in — ditto the original cocktails. The restaurant is open for in-house dining and takeout.

10. Humble Pie

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525 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA 98144
(206) 329-5133
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Humble Pie, tucked off of Rainier Avenue, sports outdoor seating and an enticing selection of wood-fired pizza using local and organic ingredients like Beecher’s Cheese, Uli’s Sausage, and Washington apples. The pizzeria, constructed of two shipping containers and built following LEED standards, also grows some of its ingredients, draws power from solar panels, and raises chickens on-site. There’s also a great selection of local beer and wine. It’s open for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

11. Thai Chicken Rice

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4611 36th Ave SW
Seattle, WA 98126
(206) 554-9442
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This West Seattle restaurant (open only for takeout and delivery) shows off Thai street food dishes like fried curry puffs, fresh rolls, and chicken wings. The small menu’s centerpiece is the khao man gai, the namesake chicken, rice, and broth dish. There’s a fried version, and a poached option—both come in sizeable portions.

12. La Medusa

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4857 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA 98118
(206) 723-2192
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Holding steady in Columbia City for 20 years, La Medusa's Sicilian cuisine is a neighborhood favorite yet doesn't get the attention it deserves. Beautiful from-scratch pastas and other southern Italian specialties make good use of local ingredients in a welcoming setting. The restaurant is selling family-style meals to-go.

13. Island Soul Rum Bar & Soul Shack

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4869 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA 98118
(206) 329-1202
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Long-running Columbia City restaurant Island Soul melds Caribbean and Southern soul food dishes. Standouts include the jerk chicken, oxtail, and goat curry combo bowl, and the prawn gumbo. The rum-heavy cocktail list focuses on a colorful array of mojitos and daiquiris, with the right balance of sweet and boozy. The restaurant is open for on-premises dining as well as contactless pick up.

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1. Bongos

6501 Aurora Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103

Despite doing brisk business, it seems this Caribbean-themed restaurant is on the radar of only those in the neighborhood; otherwise, it's not nearly as celebrated as similar shops like Un Bien and Paseo. But the sandwich and plate selection here is much broader, and the flavors just as indulgent, with ingredients like braised pork, jerk chicken, yucca fries, and fried plantains. Food is served on the outside patio and to-go.

6501 Aurora Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103

2. Copine

6460 24th Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107

Copine’s elegant meals make this Ballard restaurant a great pick for a special occasion. Chef Shaun McCrain brings French incluences and New York City cooking chops to each precisely composed dish, whether for the prix fixe Sunday dinners or the a la carte dishes served the rest of the week. The dining room is currently closed, but these elegant meals are available to go, with dishes like charred spring squash with red wine vinaigrette, grilled bavette steak, and thyme dinner rolls.

6460 24th Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107

3. Brimmer & Heeltap

425 NW Market St, Seattle, WA 98107

Through a few leadership changes in the kitchen and behind the bar, Brimmer and Heeltap remains one of the city’s strongest restaurants. Set in a lovely space in Ballard, complete with a darling patio, Brimmer hasn’t been afraid to reinvent itself. The food here is always fun, with bites like wild mushroom and nettle dumplings, whole artichoke with ramp aioli, and Manila clams with cider broth, all of which pair well with the top notch cocktail list. The restaurant is open for limited dine-in as well as to-go orders.

425 NW Market St
Seattle, WA 98107

4. Kokkaku

6904, 2208 N 45th St, Seattle, WA 98103

This relaxed Japanese steakhouse in Wallingford is one of the more underrated meat purveyors in the city. The emphasis here is on whole-animal butchery and premium cuts sold at moderate prices. There’s a wagyu kainomi heat-at-home set for two, which includes salted vanilla pudding for dessert. There are limited dine-in options as well.

6904, 2208 N 45th St
Seattle, WA 98103

5. Le Coin

4201 Fremont Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103

Lively Fremont restaurant Le Coin brings French influences to Northwest ingredients. The open kitchen makes for a fun dining experience, as cooks whip up bistro fare like seared foie gras, steaks, and sablefish with oyster mushrooms. Brunch is special too, with a similar, Northwest-French focus on seafood, meat, and vegetables. The restaurant is open for in-house dining and to-go orders.

4201 Fremont Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103

6. Union Saloon

3645 Wallingford Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103

Wallingford’s Union Saloon is flying criminally under the radar. The restaurant maintains a convivial combination of neighborhood watering hole and high-brow comfort food. The kitchen composes dishes that range from thoughtful seasonal vegetable small plates to downright delicious twists on comfort food like barbecue brisket and fried chicken. The attention to detail here makes it clear this is a labor of love. The restaurant is open for in-house dining and to-go orders.

3645 Wallingford Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103

7. Omega Ouzeri

1529 14th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122

Omega Ouzeri's bright white and blue space on Capitol Hill transports diners to the Greek isles, where fresh seafood lands on the plate with an array of fresh ingredients from a deeply flavorful playbook. Meals can be assembled family-style, from multiple shared plates, and it all goes down smoothly with sips of ouzo. The restaurant is open for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

1529 14th Ave
Seattle, WA 98122

8. Zaika

1100 Pike St, Seattle, WA 98101
A thali with naan, rice, and a variety of small bowls filled with sauces and vegetables.
A meat thali from Zaika with garlic naan.
Suzi Pratt for Eater

This jewel-toned Indian restaurant on Capitol Hill specializes in creative fusion dishes, like tandoori burgers and a Malai chicken twist on fondue, alongside staples like curry, thalis, and samosas. The restaurant is currently open for dine-in and takeout.

1100 Pike St
Seattle, WA 98101

9. Reckless Noodle House and Cocktails

2519 S Jackson St, Seattle, WA 98144

This Central District restaurant specializes in bold flavors wielded expertly in dishes like roast duck crispy rolls with sambal hoisin, papaya salad, caramelized pork fresh rolls with Hanoi fish sauce, curry vermicelli bowl, and the tingly ma la braised beef noodles. Nothing about this place feels particularly reckless, just plain dialed in — ditto the original cocktails. The restaurant is open for in-house dining and takeout.

2519 S Jackson St
Seattle, WA 98144

10. Humble Pie

525 Rainier Ave S, Seattle, WA 98144

Humble Pie, tucked off of Rainier Avenue, sports outdoor seating and an enticing selection of wood-fired pizza using local and organic ingredients like Beecher’s Cheese, Uli’s Sausage, and Washington apples. The pizzeria, constructed of two shipping containers and built following LEED standards, also grows some of its ingredients, draws power from solar panels, and raises chickens on-site. There’s also a great selection of local beer and wine. It’s open for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

525 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA 98144

11. Thai Chicken Rice

4611 36th Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98126

This West Seattle restaurant (open only for takeout and delivery) shows off Thai street food dishes like fried curry puffs, fresh rolls, and chicken wings. The small menu’s centerpiece is the khao man gai, the namesake chicken, rice, and broth dish. There’s a fried version, and a poached option—both come in sizeable portions.

4611 36th Ave SW
Seattle, WA 98126

12. La Medusa

4857 Rainier Ave S, Seattle, WA 98118

Holding steady in Columbia City for 20 years, La Medusa's Sicilian cuisine is a neighborhood favorite yet doesn't get the attention it deserves. Beautiful from-scratch pastas and other southern Italian specialties make good use of local ingredients in a welcoming setting. The restaurant is selling family-style meals to-go.

4857 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA 98118

13. Island Soul Rum Bar & Soul Shack

4869 Rainier Ave S, Seattle, WA 98118

Long-running Columbia City restaurant Island Soul melds Caribbean and Southern soul food dishes. Standouts include the jerk chicken, oxtail, and goat curry combo bowl, and the prawn gumbo. The rum-heavy cocktail list focuses on a colorful array of mojitos and daiquiris, with the right balance of sweet and boozy. The restaurant is open for on-premises dining as well as contactless pick up.

4869 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA 98118

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