Year in Review

Seattle Restaurants: The Themes of 2022

Do the past 12 months feel like a blur? Here are some kinda-sorta trends that emerged along the way.

By Allecia Vermillion December 19, 2022 Published in the Winter 2022 issue of Seattle Met


This year certainly had its food-related highs and lows, from some high-profile sushi dinners to beloved restaurants throwing in the towel. But along the way, somewhere in between, we saw a few patterns emerge...

This Year…
Coffee Got Even Better


Image: Amber Fouts

Voi Cà Phê


A counter in Georgetown serves banh mi, plus phin coffee drinks and a memorable latte flavored with pho spices. 

Papá Changó Cafe


Ballard’s plant-filled ode to Miami’s cafe scene makes a proper cafecito (espresso and sugar) and so much more. 


Pike Place Market

Technically this Pike Place Market stall specializes in antojitos, but fresh masa also powers coffee drinks like champurrado and atole.

Cafe Avole

Central District

Ethiopian coffee champion Solomon Dubie now pours jebena shots (and pulls a mean americano) in the Liberty Bank Building. 

This Year…
Great Spots Opened Second Locations


Image: Amber Fouts


Belltown, Edmonds, West Seattle

We're still waiting for the Belltown location Lee Kindell promised for his unforgettable Detroit-ish pizza. But online orders for the imminent location in Edmonds should open any day now.

Maíz Molino

Denny Regrade

Aldo Góngora followed his Pike Place Market antojitos counter with a full-on cafe that expands the mission of nixtamalizing heirloom corn. This newcomer, on Sixth Avenue between the Space Needle and the Spheres, serves brunch, lunch, and dinner—and features actual tables and chairs.

Takai by Kashiba


Shiro Kashiba partnered with his former mentee, chef Jun Takai, to bring serious sushi to the Eastside. Shiro makes frequent cameos, but this Edomae omakase is all Takai, full of aged fish and playful moments. Dinner at the sushi bar involves 24 courses; an omakase in the dining room is 12.


Capitol Hill, Fremont

One of the town's best ramen destinations (with a side hustle in memorable fried chicken) added a second location on Stone Way.

This Year…
Out-of-Towners Expanded Here

Sushi by Scratch Restaurants

Denny Triangle

A counter with just 10 seats (and a Michelin star at its California location) now performs modern sushi theater nightly near the Spheres. 



This South Korean barbecue chain impressed tough crowds in Southern California and New York. Now it’s bringing tabletop grills to Alderwood Mall. 

Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls


Born in Maryland, but an homage to Maine, the fast-growing lobster roll chain dropped its first West Coast outpost on First Avenue. Meanwhle, Maine-based Luke's Lobster will also open downtown in January.

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