Pike Place Market is known for its tremendous (and flying!) fish markets, restaurants, fresh produce, and unique sights like the Original Starbucks. However, after a day of walking around downtown and Pike Place, you may find yourself looking for a drink to relax or take in the views. In the guide below we’ll detail some of the best spots for grabbing a drink around Pike Place. Whether you’re looking for a hole in the wall, a bar with great cocktails, or a spot with a view, we’ve got you covered. Let’s dive into the 10 best bars near Pike Place Market!
The 10 Best Bars Near Pike Place Market
Before we dive into more details, here’s a complete list of the best bars we’ll examine below:
- Athenian: Great for its view and lack of crowds
- Lowell’s: Top-notch food to go along with another great view
- Uli’s Bierstube: German beers and sausages
- Cutters: Expansive bar with a Monday-to-Friday happy hour
- Alibi Room: A hole in the wall with great pizza and cheap beer
- Radiator Whiskey: A gem for fans of pork and whiskey
- Old Stove Brewing: Expansive brewery with top-notch views
- JarrBar: An intimate 8-seat bar with outstanding cocktails
- Maximilien: French restaurant with excellent views
- Pike Brewing Company: A Pike Place spot to catch a game on TV
You likely won’t find the Athenian making the cut in other “Best Pike Place Market Bar” lists. It has a single TV hidden in a corner (bartenders say it’s mostly there so the owner can catch games). Drinks include a good selection of draft beers, but the cocktails are admittedly fairly standard. However, it’s worth noting that Pike Place Market can get very busy. Stroll by the adjacent Lowell’s Restaurant on a busy Saturday and you’ll most likely find a long line just to get inside.
This is what sets the Athenian apart, you’ll get the same incredible views as Lowell’s, but without the crowds. In our experience, you can usually grab a spot at the Athenian while nearby bars are crowded. If you’re looking for a relaxing spot with a view where you don’t have to battle for a spot, pop into the Athenian and head to the back of the restaurant near the windows. You’ll find a bar area to the left that remains blissfully hidden away from most tourists. Also keep in mind that nearby restaurants like Uli’s Bierstube and Lowell’s close early, but the Athenian stays open for dinner.
2. ) Lowell’s Restaurant
Lowell’s sits next to the Athenian and as we noted earlier, it can get busy! Yet, it’s busy for a good reason: the food is fantastic. At breakfast, you can enjoy everything from crab and salmon benedicts and omelets to staples like french toast. Lunch includes its famous clam chowder and plenty of entrees that are heavy on seafood.
Beyond its delicious food, Lowell’s includes a full cocktail menu. Since the restaurant specializes in breakfast and lunch (it closes at 4:30 PM on weekends), the house specialty is Bloody Marys. Choices include a Smoked Salmon Mary, a Tiger Prawn Mary, and the “Hangtown” Mary that has oysters in it. What can we say, if you don’t like seafood you might want to skip this one! Lowell’s has three floors so if you’re enjoying some seafood in addition to grabbing a drink, you’ll be able to take in a scenic view of Puget Sound.
3.) Uli’s Bierstube
Sausage and beer: that’s it.
Uli’s is an artisan brand of sausage that’s headquartered in Seattle. Alongside a counter that servers their sausages, they’ve also created a Bierstube space that sells sausages alongside a selection of rotating craft beers. While Uli’s exclusively sells sausages, they have a wide variety and several toppings that create unique flavors. Most importantly, the inside of the Bierstube is cozy. Its located in the middle of the market not far from the famous Fish Market where salmon are flung through the air. If you’re spending the day walking around downtown, Uli’s can provide the perfect place to take a break and enjoy a beer and high-quality sausage.
4.) Cutter’s Crabhouse
Cutter’s sits next to a park at the end of Pike Place Market. As you can guess, its specialty is seafood. If you’re looking for a high-end seafood dinner, our recommendation would be to first look through the menus of Matt’s in the Market or even Sushi Kashiba first. But alas, this is a list of the best places for a drink! With that in mind, Cutter’s has an expansive bar and a fantastic view of Elliott Bay. You should be able to walk in and grab a drink with little of the hassle or wait you might find at other nearby restaurants and bars. In addition, Cutter’s has a happy hour that stretches from 3 to 6 on Monday through Friday. Specials include oyster shooters and discounts on beer and wine.
5.) Alibi Room
Alibi Room sits in an alley behind Pike Place Market. The alley is most famous for a “gum wall” that’s quirky to some and a little stomach-turning to others. While the gum wall gets most of the attention, our trips to the alley are strictly for delicious pizza and drinks.
First opened in 1994, the Alibi Room’s speakeasy-like setting has long made it a favorite for local writers and artists. It’s easy to miss, with just a small vertical sign above its doors. The decor is dark, maybe even a little dingy. Yet, while the aesthetics resemble a lovable dive bar, Alibi’s food punches above its weight. The house’s specialty is pizzas, and they are very good. Options range from classic pies with pepperoni to more adventurous options like goat cheese and prosciutto. There’s a fairly capable wine list, but the star of the show is their cheap beer. As of late 2022, a bottle of Miller High Life still costs only $3.50. Budweiser bottles are only $4.
With most of the surrounding bar options slinging microbrews that cost upward of $10 per pint after tax and tip, any list of the best bars in Pike Place Market wouldn’t be complete without the Alibi Room. Beyond great pizza, it’s an excellent spot for some cheap beers in a relaxed environment.
6. Radiator Whisky
If you’re a whiskey fan, your time has come! Seattle isn’t known for being a big barbeque and bourbon town (it’s about as far away as you can get from Kentucky), but Radiator Whiskey opened in 2013 and added a bit of Southern flair to the city. This 21+ bar and restaurant is open 4 to 10 PM on Tuesdays through Saturdays and has a collection of hundreds of whiskeys to enjoy. Beyond an expansive selection of bottles, there are more than a dozen whiskey cocktails including some that are barrel picks of more hard-to-find whiskies.
It’s worth noting that Radiator Whisky is pretty hard to find, which keeps some of the crowds away, but reservations are still recommended. The food is heavy on meat products like pork shanks, fried chicken, and beef brisket, but there are salads and vegetarian options like mac and cheese. There’s also a happy hour if you’re showing up near opening, but we recommend enjoying the fabulous house cocktails that aren’t discounted.
7. Old Stove Brewing
Old Stove sits just below Pike Place on Western Avenue. The brewery offers more than a dozen beers that are made onsite, and are quite delicious. Their menu is expansive and features everything from light lagers, to Belgians, to darker beers like stouts.
However, beyond its beer, Old Stove is also notable for a few reasons. First, the view from the brewpub is excellent and on a warm summer day you’ll want to grab a seat on Old Stove’s large outdoor patio. While many bars on this list have a view, none have the expansive outdoor space you’ll find at Old Stove. Second, it’s an extremely kid-friendly environment. So if you’re traveling with children, this can be an easy spot to sit down and enjoy a local beer. Third, its food is better than you’ll find at most breweries. Beyond pizza and sandwiches, Old Stove also offers oysters and a large selection of appetizers that can be shared among a table while enjoying a local draft.
Let’s get the downside of JarrBarr out of the way first, it’s only an 8-seat bar and they don’t take reservations. So, before you stop by just be aware this is a small and intimate bar.
The basic concept of JarrBar is recreating small restaurants from Spain and Portugal. On the bar counter sits a leg of jamon iberico that’s shaved off. The selection of food is limited to meats, cheeses, nuts, tins of salted fish, and olives. That is to say, it’s a place to snack but not one you’ll be getting a full entree at. Alongside these tapas items, you’ll also find an emphasis on cocktails. Favorites include the El Cochino (which has a chorizo-wrapped pepper on top) and the Spanish Margarita.
All of our experiences at JarrBar have been exceptional, but it is worth noting there have been some negative reviews recently. Let’s hope that the service isn’t slipping at JarrBar, because it’s long been one of Pike Place’s hidden gems.
Maximilien sits at the corner of Pike Place Market, which gives it excellent views. The cuisine is French and most entrees are in the $25 to $40 price range. If you’re dining, there is an outdoor area that’s perfect for summer evenings.
The bar area is small but maintains a view of Puget Sound. Most importantly, Maximilien has a wide variety of both wines and cocktails. Cocktails include some that focus on absinthe as well as other French specialties such as the French 85, St. Germain Spritz, and French Martini.
10.) The Pike Brewing Company
If you’re visiting the bars across this list, something will likely surprise you: almost none of them have TVs. If you’re looking to enjoy company, that’s not a pressing issue. However, if you’re hoping to sit down to catch a game on TV, that’s a big problem. The reality is there aren’t any truly great places to catch a game in Pike Place Market. However, if you’re in a pinch, we recommend The Pike Brewing Company. Side rooms have televisions and you’ll be able to enjoy different beer from a Seattle brewery that’s a certified “old timer” at 33 years old. Beyond different Pike Brewing beers on draft, there’s also standard food options like nachos and wings.