Food & Drink

Seattle's 8 sweetest walk-up eat spots

Published On 09/13/2013 Published On 09/13/2013
Cedars Seattle

When you want quick, good food options in this city, your best bet is probably Dick's, or... uh, moving to another city. That, or maybe hitting one of Seattle's sweetest walk-up windows. To that end, we've assembled a handy guide to some of the best, most you-don't-even-have-to-talk-to-a-waitress-est spots in the city:

Ivar's Lake Union
Wallingford
The only walk-up on this list that can be accessed by boat, Ivar’s window is slinging fried fish, chips, and clams, but the best cure for seasickness is the sourdough bread bowl overflowing with New England clam chowder so good that yes, Richard Sherman, Tom Brady is mad, bro.

Mamnoon
Capitol Hill
Repping Lebanon and Syria, this Cap Hill bar's walk-up serves soups, salads, sweets, kulage (griddled sandos), and the mana’eesh jibneh wiza’atar, which is with Arabic for something with Akkawi cheese, wild thyme & toasted sesame, presumably.

Eltana
Capitol Hill
Carbo-loading after a heavy workout a late-night of heavy drinking has never been easier, thanks to the $1 bagels being served from this bright yellow Dutch door.

Cedars
University District
Easily the oldest walk-up on this list, Cedars in the U-District has been feeding hungry college kids for over 30yrs with Indian/Mediterranean dishes (baba ghanoush, hummus, shish taouk, kabobs, etc.), but your parent’s money student loans hard-earned cash is best spent on the gyros plate piled w/ marinated beef, onions, and hummus.

Marination Station
Capitol Hill
Not content running the country's best food truck (according to Good Morning America), the crew at Marination opened this 600sqft QFC-surmounting nook that's fronted by a beer garden, and serving-up things like a Spicy Pork Torta w/ slaw, house-made pickled peppers & onions, guac & Nunya sauce... as in it's really nunya business what's in it.

Little Uncle
Capitol Hill
Boasting locations in both the Central District and Pioneer Square, Little Uncle serves up big flavor Thai dishes like khao soi gai (chicken curry egg noodles w/ coconut milk & curry paste). Just try not to sound too cheeky when telling the chef you want his buns... stuffed w/ braised beef cheek.

Kedai Makan
Capitol Hill
Prior to opening Kedai Makan, these restaurant vets traveled throughout Asia to learn how to make roti and stir-fried rice w/ egg & roast pork that’ll transport you all the way from Malaysia to... uh, Montana, the bar next door where you can take your food.

TNT Taqueria
Wallingford
Alfred Nobel's and Wile E. Coyote's favorite and least favorite Seattle restaurant, respectively, this vibrantly colored, walk-up-window-equipped spot from the crew behind The Hi-Life and 5 Spot, is serving locally sourced Mexican street-eats just a few blocks down from Dicks! right on 45th.

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1. Mamnoon 1508 Melrose Ave, Seattle, WA 98122 (Capitol Hill)

This modern-industrial spot in Melrose Square is where all facets of Middle Eastern cuisine meet with a simple selection of small plates, sides, and oven-roasted or grilled meats. They've got menus for brunch -- a small selection of dishes with seasonal fruits, porridge, chickpeas, and smoked meats -- and dinner -- filling portions of baked quail, lamb shank, and garlic-y chicken. If you're crunched for time, or you're not sure if Middle Eastern fare is your thing, the to-go window's got the most basic selection of mezze, soups, and salads for surefire satisfaction.

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2. Eltana 1538 12th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122 (Capitol Hill)

Eltana's got an endless list of stellar spread options (to top their handmade bagels), such as a fig apricot compote and honey almond cream cheese. If this uniqueness isn't enough, then you'll definitely be impressed with their Lox plate or endless list of Mediterranean soups.

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3. Poquitos 1000 E Pike St, Seattle, WA 98122 (Capitol Hill)

This 122-seat comida-ry from the dudes behind Ballard's hyper-successful French spot Bastille was inspired by a vintage neon "Poquitos" sign they salvaged five years ago, and is rife with south-of-the-border dishes.

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4. Marination Station 1401 Broadway, Seattle, WA 98122 (Capitol Hill)

Already anointed the country's best mobile food purveyors by those glorious brownnosers at Good Morning America, the team behind Marination is now tackling stationary sustenance from a 600sqft QFC-surmounting nook that's fronted by a beer garden, and boasts a few bar-height seats running the length of two heavily windowed walls, plus a metal-trimmed counter (reminiscent of their truck) behind which they're slinging saucily Hawaiian/Asian-inspired eats, as well as mobile vittles-redeemable Truck Bucks, also what Jon Brockman calls himself and Andrew Bogut, since they both bought Toyota Tacomas.

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5. Little Uncle 1523 E. Madison St. #101, Seattle, WA 98122 (Capitol Hill)

Founded by chefs Poncharee Kounpungchart and Wiley Frank, Little Uncle serves up authentic Thai food inspired by the family-run restaurants of Thailand they admire most. From a take-out window to a giant underground restaurant in Pioneer Square to its current counter-serve spot in Capitol Hill, Little Uncle has transformed over the years, but offers the same traditional and tasty dishes, from noodle bowls to pad Thai to shareable plates like crab fried rice. Their from-scratch curry pastes are still available inside this bright, bare-bones space, too, including for-purchase.

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6. Kedai Makan 1510 E Olive Way, Seattle, WA 98122 (Capitol Hill)

Colorful and admittedly a little cramped, this Hilltop spot makes Malaysian and southeast Asian bowls so good they've usually got a waiting list to get in at dinner time. Kedai Kakan takes late-night Asian eats above the threshold of the go-to pho bowl with Chili Pan Me, a mass of whole wheat noodles, pork, soy, poached egg, and fried anchovies with tangy broth on the side to dip and slurp as you please.

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7. Cedars Restaurant 4759 Brooklyn Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98105 (University District)

Cedars in U-District is a stellar spot for take-away curry, masalas, and anything else that will set your mouth on Mediterranean fire. They also have a sweet walk-up window, which really hones in on their ability to convince you that you will be walking off all of your calories.

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8. Ivar's 1001 Alaskan Way, Pier 54, Seattle, WA 98104 (Downtown)

Ivar's is a classic waterfront fish house serving lunch and dinner on Elliott Bay.

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9. TNT Taqueria 2114 N 45th St, Seattle, WA 98103 (Wallingford)

TNT Taqueria's a vibrantly colored, walk-up-window-equipped spot serving locally sourced Mexican street eats right on 45th.

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