Any die-hard foodie can vouch that restaurants in Seattle can serve up some amazing cuisine. This is a town of aromatic cafés and bustling markets that supply some of the freshest produce you can find. With farms, breweries, distilleries, and wineries blanketing the entire state, this city is a hub for all things delicious. Seattle restaurants capitalize on all the wonderful cuisine. But why does our region offer such great food and beverages?
Location, Location, Location!
You may have heard all the stereotypes about those who live in the Pacific Northwest. A local joke summed up our state in three simple words, “rain, trees and weed.” Ok, that is pretty accurate, but clearly, we have even more to offer. Our location on the map it what makes Seattle’s food culture possible. The temperate climate allows the residents to bike and hike during the summer and snow ski during the winter. Year-round fitness and health are important to many who live here, and quality food is key to that equation. Leave the city limits and you will find some prime agricultural land. Seattle is situated between the Olympic and Cascade mountain ranges, and they are largely responsible for unique weather patterns that allow for a diverse farming landscape.
The Benefits of Temperate
The temperate climate allows farmers to grow crops pretty much year-round, creating a reliable source of fresh produce for restaurants and dinner tables. The farm-to-table experience is huge in Washington State. You will find that much of the produce and meat is organic and local. Sure, all states get truckloads of produce from warmer states like California and Florida. But that food is already days old by the time it reaches your plate. The freshest produce will come from your neighborhood farms. The fresher the produce, the better it tastes and the more nutritious it is.
The Pacific Rim
Seattle’s location on the Pacific Rim adds an extra element of flavor to its cuisine. It is home to many Asian immigrants, and the restaurant scene includes many authentic dining experiences as a result. You will taste some of the freshest sushi the country has to offer. Freshly caught seafood always finds its way to the local outdoor markets and grocery stores.
The Hops are Hoppin’ Here
Your beer may be brewed in Milwaukee, but the odds are the hops to flavor it came from our backyard. Washington State produces about 75% of the hops used in the country. Most of those hop-growing acres are located in the fertile Yakima Basin. It’s no wonder that there are over 250 craft breweries throughout the state. Many of those unique beers can be found all over Seattle restaurant menus and grocery stores.
A Wine for Every Meal
Washington produces nearly 70 wine grape varieties – a ratio of about 36% white to 64% red. We’ve found that many grape varieties thrive throughout Washington’s micro-climates. Only one state in the country produces more wine than Washington, and that’s California. With so many vineyards, don’t be surprised to see such a huge selection of great wines to choose from either in a store or during your visit to a Seattle restaurant.
Coffee, How Do I Love Thee? Let Me Count the Ways…
No big surprise to hear this, but coffee beans do NOT grow well in a temperate climate. You’ll want a visit a subtropical region to harvest those beans. However, Seattle still has a coffee scene like non other. It’s not just Starbucks. Yes, you can find a Starbucks on just about every corner, but there are many coffee companies throughout Seattle. In fact, if you look up a list of the best cafés in the Emerald City, Starbucks doesn’t even make the top ten. Variety with coffee has been something Seattleites look forward to.
A City for all the Senses
Whether you’re a Seattle local or thinking of paying a visit, really take the time to experience this unique culture with all your senses. Feel the salty sea air on your face as you take in the beautiful views around town. Gaze upon all the colorful local produce at the markets. Smell the freshly brewed coffee at a coffee bar. And have fun pairing the perfect bottle of wine with some fresh local cuisine.