As Octoberfest Activities are winding down, our friends at Seattle Magazine are here to remind us that sometimes it’s not all about the beer. Sometimes it’s all about the food. With this list of Seattle’s best pub grub, you’ll be rubbing your belly with satisfaction in no time! This list of four pubs with excellent grubs is not only delicious but true to Seattle style.
When I moved to New York City a decade ago, I couldn’t believe how bad they had it. Oh sure, they’ve got Mario Batali, Daniel Boulud and so many other of the country’s best chefs. They’ve got world-class service, a genius on every corner, yada yada. But when it comes to what’s really important in life—craft beers, on tap!—I’ve got news for you, folks: The beer selection back east was dreadful.
It turns out that I’d gotten spoiled. Seattle brews some of the best beer in the country, and our restaurant and bar owners do a knockout job of showing it off. I’d learned to expect a minimum of a half-dozen local microbrews on tap at any self-respecting watering hole. And I’d learned to expect pub food made with extra care.
With our recent resurgence of craft breweries (and their tiny little brothers, the nano-breweries), I figured it was a great time to do some more thorough, ahem, research. So I recently made my way around town in search of pubs with a stellar local beer selection and exceptional food. And I didn’t have to look hard.
Porterhouse, in the Admiral District of West Seattle, opened two years ago to little fanfare, but it’s a true gem for local beer drinkers: General manager Krista Maes oversees the 25 taps of mostly Washington microbrews (the rest are West Coast brews) showcasing local favorites such as Schooner Exact (SoDo), Georgetown Brewing, Flyers (Oak Harbor), Anacortes Brewery and American Brewing (Edmonds). Plus, there are always two nitro ales (filtered but unpasteurized) and one cask ale (unfiltered and unpasteurized) on tap.
Having gone twice now, I already recognize the regulars bellying up for pints and I can’t wait to go back; the place is easygoing and neighborly. Bartenders are quick with samples of beers on tap and they pointed me straight to the excellent lamb burger, a whopping half-pounder cooked to order, juicy and delicious on a Macrina bun ($11) and served with thick, hand-cut steak fries.
Kids are welcome in the roomy restaurant half of the pub; there’s a light-drenched bar with tall bar tables and a curving wall of windows for grownups. Either way, I recommend eating like a kid by ordering the truly great hand-dipped corndog ($6), made with a kosher dog.
If you prefer your local brews with a raucous noise level (because this place is loud), then Tom Douglas’ 21-and-older Brave Horse Tavern in South Lake Union is a terrific choice. Eighteen brews on tap—a list overseen by “beer czar” Warren Peterson—include Silver City (Silverdale), Big Al’s (White Center), Chuckanut (Bellingham), plus brews from West Coast breweries like HUB (Portland), and Bear Republic (Healdsburg, California).
You’ll have to share a table (nearly all the seating is at long communal tables), but it’s worth it for the impressive pub food: It is, across the board, delicious. Malt-boiled pretzels served with irresistibly retro pimento cheese dip ($6); outstanding burgers dripping with homemade barbecue sauce and mayo, and topped with iceberg lettuce, for only $6. Celebrate slamming the door on bathing-suit season with a bratwurst plate ($11), a snappy sausage on top of creamy mashers, with the seasonal brew (or two) of your choice to wash it down.
Click through to continue the article (and your drooling)!
This is our weekly guest post from our friends at Seattle Magazine, which keeps readers on the pulse of restaurants, personalities, arts, entertainment and culture that reflect the tapestry of our dynamic landscape. We’ve teamed up for an exciting partnership to bring you a weekly dose of fantastic Date Night ideas throughout greater Seattle.