Where to eat on the Eastside

Downtown Bellevue:

  • Bis on Main: Now this is a fancy schmancy American Bistro – worth a try but pricey
  • Cantinetta: Very cool Italian restaurant on Main Street in Bellevue – definitely more “cool Italian” and absolutely not cheesy Italian. Make sure you get a dessert – my favorite are the “Nutella doughnuts” – Zeppole – out of this world! Added bonus: Frans chocolates is right next door, you HAVE to stop by there and buy some Sea Salt Caramels, they are really THE best!)
  • Din Tai Fung: If you like Asian food and like homemade noodles – this is your place! I love their pork dumplings, garlic green beans (even the non veggie eaters love those beans) and the shrimp stir fried noodles – everything is super fresh and the little dumpling are made fresh every day – you can watch how they get made.
  • Flo: if you like to sit at the Sushi bar then this place does not have the best atmosphere (no to compare with Umi in downtown Seattle) but the sushi are very good and fresh and the restaurant is hustling during lunch hour.
  • Monsoon: Vietnamese Food, their staple is the fish in a claypot and their banana bread dessert (Glassybaby is just right across the street, this atelier makes very cool handmade glass votive candle holders in the most amazing color shades. )
  • Purple Café: Not your traditional café featuring an amazing wine menu and pairing of your wine with your selection of different cheese “flights” (and vice versa),  the entrée selection is also very good.
  • Wild Ginger: Asian Fusion, Try their duck in steamed buns with Plum sauce – delish!
  • Seastar: Absolutely stunning seafood and also great Sushi.
  • Daniels Broiler: Nice steakhouse with great views

Fall City:

  • Fall City Bistro: I couldn’t believe there is a decent restaurant in this little sleepy town and now we even have two. The Fall City Bistro doesn’t look like a lot from the outside but the service and food is outstanding. Ambience is also nice. I’ve heard all about the latest trend of “deconstructed” food and so I tried the deconstructed Caesar Salad and it was a really nice presentation and very tasty. Everything is organic and very fresh. I ate the Chicken Nachatta and that was the juiciest chicken I ever ate. Mike’s lasagna tasted very light and fresh, absolutely worth a second visit!
  • The Roadhouse: Traditional American Fare in a nice country atmosphere.

Kirkland:

  • Cactus: This is a fund Tex Mex place in downtown Kirkland. Not your average Mexican food and my favorite dessert is the Bananas Dulce – flash seared with brown sugar and Rum and served with coconut ice cream – delish!
  • Noppakao: Best Thai Food in Juanita. A little bit outside of Kirkland but worth the drive. I think they make the best Crying Tiger Salad, Fresh rolls and Phad-See Ew.
  • Beach Café: Between Kirkland and Juanita is a little spot that houses a couple decent restaurants with an outstanding view on to Lake Washington. Beach Café, Le Grande Bistro and Bin on the Lake. The Beach Café serves traditional American food and of course you pay for the view. In summer they have very nice outdoor seating. Le Grande Bistro is a French steakhouse, just across from the Woodmark Hotel which hosts the Beach Café. Le Grand Bistro is fun in summer for breakfast and I especially enjoy their Croque Madame or their steak salad for lunch. Bin on the Lake is definitely more on the pricey side and “fine dining” like, its location is right in the Woodmark Hotel. I went there with my girl friends for one of their 3 for 30 deals and the food was great. There are though a lot of non happy Yelp reviewers, so I guess its hit or miss and might be better to go there with a Groupon voucher, so if the food is not so great, at least it didn’t cost and arm and a leg.
  • Momoya Sushi & Sake House: The only place on my food list that doesn’t have its own webpage. Well its a hole in the wall type of restaurant but the best Sushi on the East Side. My husband loves their Teriyaki, which really isn’t your traditional Teriyaki, this dish is a steak cooked to perfection Japanese style. I love my spicy Tuna and Scallop roll.
  • Trellis: Haven’t been there but ONLY heard the BEST reviews of this “Farm to Table” restaurant, top notch, everything is local and freshly prepared.

Redmond:

  • Matador: A very unique and modern take on Mexican food. Pretty much the only restaurant in Redmond with a cool bar and more a “dating atmosphere”, everything else is very family oriented in Redmond.
  • Pomegranate: Very Pacific Northwestern restaurant owned and run by locally well known caterer Lisa Dupar. The desserts next to the coffee bar constantly change and some are pretty amazing.
  • The Stone House: The location is quaint and adorable – a literal stone house in the middle of downtown Redmond. Inside, the atmosphere is warm and inviting and the food is excellent. I would say traditional American food with a twist, e.g. Duck Sausage with Gnocchi, Pork Belly with Polenta or Shrimp with Pickled Tomato’s.

Snoqualmie:

  • Salish Lodge: A true Pacific Northwestern Hotel with restaurant and an Attic café overlooking the Snoqualmie Falls. Personally I think the food is way overpriced and not really spectacular for the price but the photo opportunities are great and its fun to have a glass of wine and a cheese plate in the Attic, the view is worth it. Be prepared to pay $100 for 2 people having drinks and appetizers. On a beautiful day you can walk down a trail pretty close to the falls and enjoy a romantic stroll and then climb back up for a glass of wine/beer and a snack in the Attic.
  • Woodmanlodge: I would categorize this as a steakhouse in a historic setting. Similar to the Salish Lodge and the Attic, this place is very beautiful and has a nice bar but the food is just average and overpriced. Nevertheless, its a nice place to stop by and have drinks and appetizers.
  • Brunello: This restaurant sits on the corner of one of the housing tracks on Snoqualmie Ridge, so not the most scenic location but the food is great. Authentic Italian Food and homemade pasta. The prices a little bit higher than the average Italian restaurant but I think its worth it.

Woodnville:

  • The Herbfarm: Now this restaurant doesn’t even fit into any of the aforementioned restaurants, this is more like a Michelin Star restaurant. You have to make reservations weeks or months ahead and dinner is around $250 a person, lasts all night, nine courses paired with 6 different wines. Definitely a one in a lifetime experience for the foodie in you. You might want to consider staying at the Willows Lodge next door, a first class hotel with a very nice spa and very nice restaurant The Barking Frog.
  • Red Hook Brewery: This is a very famous local brewery with decent average brew house food. The patio in summer is packed and great for people watching and the brewery is especially a great stop if you are biking on the Sammamish River Trail and would like to fuel up on some brewskis and food. In summer the brewery puts on outdoor concerts which are fun to watch in this environment. I would suggest to order the beer sampler so that you can try out all the different beers Red Hook is famous for.

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