Primarily known as a hub for Amazon, as well as the rest of the tech industry in Seattle, South Lake Union has developed into a buzzing neighborhood with lively bars, restaurants, and food trucks to match. Sandwiched between Uptown and Capitol Hill, the neighborhood has sweeping views of the water, a waterfront museum, and a center for sailing, kayaking, hot tub boats, and all kinds of water recreational sports.
Whether you’re an athlete fresh off the waters, an Amazon employee looking for lunch, or a Seattlelite looking to try something new, South Lake Union is bustling with great places to eat. Below are 10 of some of the best restaurants in South Lake Union, what they serve, and more.
Duke’s Seafood is an well respected name in Washington. The restaurant chain follows strict standards when sourcing their ingredients, and they use local and organic produce whenever possible. Each dish is made with sustainable seafood, organic chicken and eggs, and local, grass-fed beef. The dishes at Duke’s include chowders, seafood salads, sandwiches, burgers, and seafood-based specials. At the Lake Union location, you can watch the seaplanes landing and taking off in the lake.
The Butcher’s Table
Nominated by Thrillist as Seattle’s Best Steakhouse, The Butcher’s Table is a sleek and modern fine dining experience with fine cuts of meat taking center stage. Although the restaurant is known as a steakhouse, they also serve local Dungeness crab, raw oysters, and more. The Butcher’s Table is most well known for their Mishima Reserve American Wagyu, available in multiple cuts both as entrees in their restaurant and in their butcher shop. They also have tasting flights of different cuts of meats, putting a fun twist on a classic steakhouse dinner date.
G.H. Pasta Co.
This quick and casual pasta joint offers fresh homemade noodles with a variety of vegetarian and meat toppings. From simple and light pasta dishes like pesto fusilli to richer flavors like white truffle butter tonnarelli, there’s a pasta to satisfy every craving at G.H. Pasta Co. They also offer side dishes like garlic bread, fried oysters, and more. Stop in for a quick lunch, to meet up with a friend, or to pick up something delicious for a cozy dinner at home.
Owned and operated by James Beard Award-winning chef Renee Erickson and her partners, Willmott’s Ghost needs no introduction. Willmott’s Ghost is one of her newest projects but has the same standard of quality as its sister restaurants like The Whale Wins and Bateau. Located on the Amazon Campus Spheres, Willmott’s Ghost showcases the flavors of Italy, specifically Rome, with a regularly rotating menu that capitalizes on the freshness of the seasons. Willmott’s Ghost is primarily known for its pizza but they also serve pork from Wilderness Farms and striploin from Carman Ranch.
White Swan Public House
Located right on the waters of South Lake Union, White Swan Public House is a popular seafood restaurant that features sustainable seafood and local brews. Their patio section is perfect for taking in the views of Seattle’s waterways during warmer months, while its industrial interior makes for a cozy place for friends to gather during wintertime. They offer happy hour on weekdays from 3 to 5 PM with discounts on food and drinks. They also have weekend brunch service from 10 AM to 3 PM featuring special dishes only available on weekends.
Kati Vegan Thai
As the name implies, Kati Vegan Thai serves up vegan Thai cuisine with a focus on mixing Thai tradition with sustainable ingredients. Their chefs utilize traditional cooking techniques to create heartwarming dishes that showcase only the freshest ingredients and the best of natural flavors. Their menu is filled with soups, rice dishes, stir-frys, curry, and noodle dishes. While some dishes are spicy, there are plenty of options available for those who prefer milder dishes. Stop in and try classic dishes like Som Tum salad or Tom Yum soup or snag one of their unique in-house cocktails and a sweet treat like mango with sweet sticky rice.
Located in the Amazon Doppler building, Marination is a Hawaiian Korean fusion restaurant featuring unique eats like tacos, sliders, rice bowls, and more. With 3 locations in Seattle, Marination has become popular for its laid back atmosphere and quick bites. Their South Lake Union Location has happy hour from 2 to 5 PM on weekdays, featuring reduced prices on 2-packs for tacos and sliders. Their regular menu features unique salads, kimchi fried rice and quesadillas, and spiced tater tots. Gluten free and vegetarian options are available.
Conveniently located across the street from the Amazon Campus Spheres, Rubinstein’s Bagels is a local favorite with 2 locations in Seattle and 1 in Redmond. Open daily from 7 AM to 3 PM, this is the perfect place to grab a quick bite for breakfast or a delicious bagel sandwich for lunch. Their bagels are freshly made and are available to order either as simply sliced and toasted or with locally made schmear which is made to be spread onto the bagels like cream cheese. Their schmear comes in many flavors like fried onion and chive, goat cheese, black truffle, and more. Their sandwich menu also changes throughout the day, with an individual menu for breakfast and lunch. Last but not least, they serve duck fat matzo ball soup and have a menu of caffeinated drinks to pair with their bagels.
The word “Teinei” means “with care and politeness” and that’s exactly what Ramen-Ya TEINEI seeks to embody. The goal is to embody the high standards of service set in Japan, even if the meal is something as seemingly simple as ramen. Ramen-Ya TEINEI has tonkotsu and vegetarian ramen broths with various toppings, as well as ramen with no broth. They also have 4 super ramen dishes found only at their restaurant featuring unique flavor combinations like garlic tonkotsu carbonara and spicy tonkotsu miso. Their menu also features imported Japanese alcohol, classic Japanese bar snacks, and a menu of ramen toppings that guests can pick and choose from.
Nana’s Green Tea
Every neighborhood needs a cafe and Nana’s Green Tea is steadily becoming a favorite in South Lake Union. With a love for all things matcha, Nana’s Green Tea serves up lattes, parfaits, and more based around green tea. They have savory items too, including classics like katsu curry and sukiyaki don, as well as twists on favorites like their tonkatsu sandwich and chicken karaage salad. They are popular for their matcha parfaits, which also come in hojicha and black sesame flavor, as well as a seasonal flavor. Stop in for a quick drink in the morning or to meet up with your best friend for afternoon tea, all complete with adorably green drinks, snacks, and dessert that highlight the beauty of Japanese green tea.