Seattle restaurant for 20-30 fancy fellows?
February 26, 2013 1:53 PM   Subscribe

Calling all Seattle foodies. I am totally at a loss, as I've never been there. But I'm looking for a nice, classic restaurant that serves good seafood. I'm looking to book a place for our main dinner honoring the residents/post-doc fellow students who will present at a conference.

Criteria are:

It should be near the downtown/bellhouse/pike place area.

It needs to be a place that would take a reservation for 20-30 people.


NICE. Money not much of an object. In fact, if it's too cheap, it will raise eyebrows.
posted by Juicy Avenger to Food & Drink (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Flying Fish?
posted by owls at 2:06 PM on February 26, 2013

I like Palisade, which is at the north end of Elliott Bay at the Marina there.

Anthony's is decent, and that's on the water at Bell St, so you can walk from Belltown.

Flying Fish, above, used to be Belltown but is now in South Lake Union. Still a good place, but I'm not sure if owls was aware of the move.

McCormick and Schmick's has a place in downtown on 1st at Spring st.

Brooklyn Oysterhouse on 2nd by the Art Museum (north downtown)

Can't speak for Flying Fish or Brooklyn, but the rest all have banquet rooms if that's your thing. Given the spaces in the neighborhood, I doubt FF has one. I will say these are all staple seafood restaurants, but they probably aren't culinary cutting-edge restaurants or trendy with the young people. (FF could be trendy, or maybe it's just in a trendy neighborhood overrun with Amazon employees.)

Tom Douglas' "Etta" might be a way to go-- it's on Western in Belltown, below Virginia st, more or less-- they appear to have a banquet room. Matt's at the Market is great, but small-- you'd probably buy the place out.
posted by Sunburnt at 2:22 PM on February 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

Etta's Seafood, a Tom Douglas restaurant. And if they can't handle that many people, ask them which other restaurant they suggest. They have plenty of great options in the city. This is just a block from Pike Place Market, with a decent view and a casual but upscale vibe. My husband and I celebrated his graduation from med school there with a large crowd, and it was totally appropriate.

Other options: McCormick & Schmicks, Elliot's Oyster House (which has a progressive oyster happy hour), or Six Seven at the Edgewater Hotel (for a unique on-the-water location).
posted by Capri at 2:25 PM on February 26, 2013

Ivar's Salmon House is a very nice place, great view of the canal and Lake Union, extremely good quality fresh fish, and very professional at handling large groups (there are several banquet rooms). We had our wedding rehearsal dinner there. I find that the quality is suitable to please Northwest native foodies but the recipes are simple and classic enough to not scare off folks from less food-adventurous backgrounds.
posted by matildaben at 2:42 PM on February 26, 2013 [2 favorites]

I second Elliott's. It's on the waterfront, is walk-able from downtown hotels and they have a private dining room that is big enough for your group.

I live on the waterfront and often bring out of town guests here and everyone swoons over the cedar planked salmon, the clam chowder, and of course the fantastic selection of oysters. With Elliott's you're on the water and if the day is clear will have a great view of the Olympic mountains, the Space Needle, and of course the ferries.

An alternate suggestion that has more "foodie cred" would be the private dining room at Tom Douglas' Dahlia Lounge, the cornerstone of his Seattle food empire.
posted by donovan at 2:46 PM on February 26, 2013

If you can get out to Ray's in Ballard, their seafood is excellent. It doesn't match your location criterium, but I'll bet you find it is worth it. Flying Fish used to be great, but now they are just okay.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:03 PM on February 26, 2013

You have good suggestions above. I'd add:

The Six Seven restaurant at the Edgewater hotel. Very nice land and food selections, spectacular view.

McCormick's Fish House and Bar is a classic place.

Aqua by El Goucho is spendy and gorgeous and has top Zagat food ratings.

Lastly, Shuckers is gorgeous, has very nice seafood, and is right downtown.
posted by bearwife at 3:47 PM on February 26, 2013

Hands down Aqua El Gaucho!
posted by jennstra at 8:18 PM on February 26, 2013

I had an excellent seafood dinner recently at Blueacre, at 7th & Olive. I was in a larger dining room, but I would be very surprised if they didn't have private accommodations for a group of your size.
posted by sapere aude at 8:47 PM on February 26, 2013

We went to Matt's in the Market when we were in Seattle last month, and it was wonderful. Kind of a small place, but there was a large group in when we went (15 or so people, I believe.)

It's *right* in the market, upstairs from the main entrance to the market (and overlooks som of the stall area, as well)
posted by miss_scarlett at 11:42 PM on February 26, 2013

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