Lived in Seattle for eight years until 2015, still visit often. Will be missing some of the latest and greatest but this should still be a solid list. Will keep adding to the list as more come to mind or we visit new places.
  1. Maneki (International District)
    Hands down our favorite place for Japanese food - Nishino in Madison Valley comes close but the prices and vibe at Maneki put it over the top. Although for sushi we favor Tsukushinbo right nearby. But the other menu items at Maneki are delicious and their broiled black cod is amazing and a great deal.
  2. Salumi (Pioneer Square)
    The waits at this place are nearly as renowned as their sandwiches. Their porchetta sandwich is incredibly good. The line forms outside and can be quite long so get there early with a friend on a nice day and have a nice chat while waiting to order.
  3. How to Cook a Wolf (Upper Queen Anne)
    Favorite among all the great Ethan Stowell places around town. Pork belly (which was a special) and pastas have been consistently good and they finally started taking reservations a few years ago.
  4. Palace Kitchen (Belltown)
    My favorite of the vast Tom Douglas Seattle restaurant empire. Less expensive and more casual than the flagship Dahlia Lounge. Tanaka-san is also a favorite and there isn't a dud in the bunch aside from the now-closed Ting Momo.
  5. Tsukushinbo (International District)
    Our preference for sushi in Seattle especially since Shiro sold Shiro's and isn't behind the sushi bar as consistently. For non-sushi Japanese go to Maneki, also on this list.
  6. Bakery Nouveau (Capitol Hill, West Seattle)
    Pastries, breakfast sandwiches, and even their pizza slices are consistently good. Twice baked almond and chocolate croissants and the Junction sandwich are favorites.
  7. Din Tai Fung (Multiple)
    Yes, it's a chain and normally we prefer to find local spots, but this place is so consistently good it made the cut. Waits are insanely long so go during the wee or be there when they first open and start building their list.
  8. Facing East (Bellevue)
    We were introduced to this Taiwanese restaurant on the east side by a Taiwanese friend so we assume it's legit. It's certainly delicious. Parking can be tough during peak hours despite their decent-sized lot since Bellevue has no street parking.
  9. Wandering Goose (Capitol Hill), Biscuit Bitch (Downtown) and Serious Biscuit (South Lake Union)
    A few great options for excellent biscuits and biscuit sandwiches. Morsel with locations in the U District and Ballard is also worth a look.