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Lunch in North Seattle


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Any recommendations for lunch spots in North Seattle, say from Northgate to Shorline, or up along Aurora Ave?  These can be Ethnic, holes in the walls, burgers, Pizza, mom & pop, etc.  as long as the food is good.  I'm meeting a friend up there for lunch in December, and we'll probably stay in that general area if possible.

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Well, it may not be open for lunch or even a desireable place to have lunch, but one of the wackiest dining experiences I've ever had was in North Seattle at the Aurora Cinema Grill.

As the name suggests, it's on Aurora Ave and it's in the Shoreline area at about 130th. It's a movie theater that also serves food. Have you heard of it? Or been there? It's a total experience.

The menu is mostly sandwiches, pizza and such, but the good news is that they serve booze (great champagne concoctions).

The food is ok for what it is. If you order a sandwich, make sure you check to see if the bread is grilled or toasted or request a bun. Their fillings sometimes overpower the soggy bread.

Prices also were decent and you thankfully won't find movie house markups. Sandwiches are in the ŭ-Ű range. Focaccia pizzas are around บ. They even have cheese plates in the Ů-Ű neighborhood.

The seating arrangement works very well. Tiered levels have rows of tables with roll-away chairs (excellent touch). The lights are dimmed, but the theater is not completely dark. I didn't find that too distracting. Servers are very good about appearing during appropriate parts of the movie.

The movies are second run, but not so old that you can get them on video/dvd :)

Anyone else been to the Aurora Cinema Grill? What did you think?

Other recs in North Seattle:

Burrito Loco on Holman Road (just west of about 100th and Aurora). This is a fantastic little mom and pop Mexican restaurant with about the best halibut ceviche I've ever had. The kind of place that won't serve it if it isn't exactly right. BL is one of few local restaurants that serves tortas. Cheap. 9211 Holman Rd., 206-783-0719.

Cyndy's Pancake House: Also on Aurora at about 100th. Diner-rific. Excellent pancakes, old school breakfasts served all day. A bit smoky, but otherwise good. Cheap. 10507 Aurora Ave. N., 206-522-5100.

In Greenwood, a little south, I really like a vegetarian restaurant called Carmelita. It's a very unusual restaurant with fantastic seasonally focused veg food. Not sure if it's open for lunch, but if it is, it's worth checking out. 7314 Greenwood, 206-706-9916.

I think the Enat Ethiopian restaurant is somewhere up there, although I've never been there. I hear it's very good. It's on my to do list.

Let me know if you try any.

(Edited by girl chow at 8:55 pm on Nov. 20, 2001)

A palate, like a mind, works better with exposure and education and is a product of its environment.

-- Frank Bruni

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Seems like we are the only 4 ever on this site. I like Pho Bang, Teriyaki Way and believe it or not I still head to Burgermaster. They have never done me wrong. Has anyone ever purchased meats from the Exotic Meat Store????? I saw Brian Poor and the owner on "The Man Show"...very odd!

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Hey PapaChef, you're right! We are the sole four ;)

Hey Blue Heron, why don't you give PapaChef's place a try? He's in Northish Seattle, although just a bit south of where you'll be. I highly recommend his eats. I've only eaten there for dinner, but I've seen his lunch menu and it looks delish. I was so inspired by PapaChef's blue salad concoction that I tried recreating it at home. It's better at the Blue Onion Bistro. :) Address: 5801 Roosevelt, digits: 206-729-0579

Also, PapaChef, I visited Seattle Exotic Meats (it's at 176th and Aurora; 206-546-4922) for a work assignment on game meats back in 1998. If I recall correctly, I was offered some ostrich and alligator jerky (or it might have been buffalo). Both were chewy. They had lots of weird meat, but nothing as odd as what you'll find in Montana. On my last visit there, I ate a bull testicle at the Rocky Mountain Oyster Festival in Deer Lodge, Montana. It also was chewy.

A palate, like a mind, works better with exposure and education and is a product of its environment.

-- Frank Bruni

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I recreated papachef's pancakes at home, and they were also better at his place, but that's why they call him the chef and me the home-skillet.

Blue Heron, if you find any gems up north, please let us know.  In addition to the general interest on the board, I'm always looking for less centrally-located places to review in the paper.

Matthew Amster-Burton, aka "mamster"

Author, Hungry Monkey, coming in May

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I was up in the north end this weekend, and hubby and I stopped at Doong Kong Lau for lunch (thanks for the tip, mamster).  We liked this place.   We shared a bowl of 'Roasted Duck in Soup Noodle', which was good, especially the nice large pieces of roast duck.  We also ordered a couple of things from the cart that came by.  One was a side dish of gai lan w/oyster sauce and the other was an adventuresome plate of small whole fish (anchovies) fried with peppers and garlic.  We realized after we ordered that the specialties of this restaurant are the Hakka cuisine items, so we will return to try some of those, ie. Hakka Salt Bake Chicken,  or Prawns in shell, or the Tofu Seafood Hotpot, which is also supposed to be really good.   The service at this family run business was friendly and good.

Papa Chef...I looked for the Pho Bang and Teriyaki Way places in the phone book to get an address to check them out incase we drove by, and didn't find either one listed.  Maybe they are gone now?

I look forward to trying some of girlchow's suggestions, and of course Papa Chef's place, too.  

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  • 1 month later...

Near Carmelita, the 74th Street ale house has some good salads and hot sandwiches.  

7 Stars pepper is a new chineese place that I have been pretty happy with so far.  Much better than its predecessors.  

A few doors down is a new branch of Pho Bac.

Old Country Buffet was a disappointment.  Was craving some good cafeteria food, but that wasn't it.  Some of it was Ok, but I don't think it compairs to what I have had at Luby's or Furrs in Texas.  They didn't even have chicken fried steak!

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Hi eriks..welcome to egullet!  Glad to have both you and jeffjl on the northwest board.

I've also been to 74th St. Ale House.  It's a great place for lunch that I had kind of forgotten about.  I remember having a nice hot spicy gumbo as well as a great grilled chicken sandwich there.  That was back when the U-Brew (brew your own beer) place was in the neighborbood.  Sure wish U-Brew was still around.  We made our own twice there, and they turned out pretty darn good.

Thanks for the tip that Pho Bac has a new location.  I like their locations up on Jackson St. in Little Saigon district, and the one down off Rainier Ave. on Hanford St....looking forward to trying their Greenwood location, too.

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  • 7 months later...
Has anyone ever purchased meats from the Exotic Meat Store????? I saw Brian Poor and the owner on "The Man Show"...very odd!

Yes! I've bought meat there. Let's see, I bought a wild boar roast a venison roast and I imagine, one of the cutest rabbits ever to grace the earth. My buddy and I were gearing up for a big bbq. We smoked all of them along with a goat from that Contintental spice shop by Than Brothers on Aurora. The boar roast was the juiciest and tastiest, followed by the goat shoulder and then by the rabbit. I was really surprised by the rabbit, tender and juicy with a very delicate flavor. I'd definitely smoke up another rabbit. The venison was dry, go figure, I guess that's something I need to work on. I saw a bunch of other meats there too, but the cuts didn't look that appetizing.

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Anyone else been to the Aurora Cinema Grill? What did you think?

A good friend of mine loved going there. Unfortunately, it folded several months ago.

"Save Donald Duck and Fuck Wolfgang Puck."

-- State Senator John Burton, joking about

how the bill to ban production of foie gras in

California was summarized for signing by

Gov. Schwarzenegger.

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Yeah, I think the Aurora Cinema Grill closed three or four weeks after I wrote that post last year.

I felt partially responsible, seeing as how I didn't post about it earlier. That place was wacky. If anyone ever encounters a combo movie house and restaurant, please let me know. My desire for good cinema eats has gone unfulfilled since ACG closed.

A palate, like a mind, works better with exposure and education and is a product of its environment.

-- Frank Bruni

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I used to go to one in Austin named the Alamo that was pretty cool. I had fun dragging my unsuspecting brother to Delicatessen there, though there were no ironic foods. :shock:

They also had Spike and Mike's Twisted Animation festival. They never served hard drinks, but you could get buckets of beer and margaritas. Damn cool place. I give them credit for using Dave's Insanity Sauce on their hottest wings, though they weren't actually as hot as Dave's.

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One of the few things I still miss after moving here from Portland 8 years ago is the Bagdad and the Mission Theater. Both are run by McMenamins and have really good pizza. I suppose they have good beer too, but I don't touch the stuff so I couldn't say.

I see they're opening a hotel and theater in Centralia soon, so maybe we'll get one here eventually. Maybe they could buy the Egyptian? Please?

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