Mondays are tough enough as it is - you don’t need to end yours face-to-face with a “closed” sign, scrambling for a back-up plan as your date (or worse, your parents) ask why you didn’t check the operating hours in advance. It’s a devastating truth that many great restaurants are closed on Monday nights, but that doesn’t mean you need to settle for a bad meal. Instead, use this guide to find some great options all over Seattle.
If your day was so full of meetings and involuntary power naps that you only ate two almonds, half a bagel, and nine cans of LaCroix, you could probably use a bowl of miso soup and several sushi rolls. Sushi Kanpai is a great casual place in First Hill for a light meal, and it’s always easy to get in. Go for steamed gyoza and some spicy tuna.
Sometimes, Monday afternoon hits you like a brick to the face and the only cure is food you would usually eat on your bedroom floor at 2am, like tater tot nachos and mac and cheese pizza. Petoskey’s understands. It’s a pizzeria and bar that somehow makes tots drenched in queso and pizza topped with cheesy macaroni feel tasteful (maybe it’s because of the nice space). Grab your friends for a last-minute group dinner to make a Monday hit you more like a bucket of cotton balls.
Nirmal’s is a modern spot with a lot of bricks, a pretty tiled bar, and some great upscale Indian food. We’re fans of the beef curry and the tandoori spice-rubbed grilled paneer, as well as the excellent pakoras and samosas with mint chutney. A round or two of some of the best mules in the city won’t hurt, either.
Sometimes, Monday calls for blowing off the gym in favor of burgers and beers. Two Doors Down is a laid-back spot that would work just as well for a big group dinner with friends as it would a family night out, kids and all. The burgers range from a classic to one topped with fried avocado, bacon, and egg-in-the-hole buns. As good as those are, we could eat the crispy fries in garlic hop mayo all day.
Monday dinners are often better when they’re quick - maybe “your show” is on at 8, or you’ve already hit your daily quota of sharing oxygen with other humans. Satay Bar is perfect for that - it’s a quiet spot for a solo meal, but there’s still some excitement from the sizzling wok soundtrack. Even if you dream about steak all day, you’ll want the tofu satay to go along with some stir fry and noodles.
Pork ribs, hot links, brisket and jalapeno mac and cheese sounds like a solid way to kick off the week. Wood Shop is our favorite Seattle BBQ spot. Their sauce is excellent - put it on everything, including the fried mac and cheese balls you’ll order in addition to the mac and cheese itself.
Four of our favorite pizza spots are closed on Mondays. Luckily, we have a fifth. Pizzeria Pulcinella, which is a Neapolitan spot almost as south as Renton, is very much open for business. Pulcinella’s pies are great (especially if you order them well done), and go particularly well with a spumoni ice cream and maybe also some lasagna.
You worked from home today, and forgot to mute yourself on that conference call before your significant other gave you a long and drawn out romantic farewell. You’re still going to have to face Tuesday, but first, heal with dinner at Staple & Fancy - an upscale Italian spot in Ballard that looks like an elegant shipping warehouse. While cacio e pepe and pappardelle with bolognese and ricotta can’t negate the fact that a room full of people just heard 60 seconds of kissy noises, it will distract you for at least a few minutes.
If you’re looking for something quick, Mean Sandwich is a good move. It’s an old-school-seeming deli operation with some new-school sandwiches going on - for instance, the chicken cutlet sandwich with provolone and buffalo mayo, and the namesake “Mean Sandwich” with homemade corned beef, mustard, mint, and maple syrup. If things weren’t ideal at work today, add the fried potato “skins and ins” with buffalo mayo on the side for dipping. And if sh*t really hit the fan, feel free to eat on the floor in the backyard playhouse.
You don’t need the stress of trying to get a table at The Walrus And The Carpenter this early in the week. Head to Taylor Shellfish instead for oysters and a cocktail at the bar. Or a shrimp po’boy with french fries at a corner table.
Some restaurants work for any situation, and Stateside is one of them. They serve quality Vietnamese fusion food, like bun cha with homemade sausage, fried chicken with a spicy ginger sauce, and crispy duck fresh rolls we could eat by the dozen. As a bonus, the decor and atmosphere almost fool you into thinking you’re on vacation.
If you find yourself trapped on the Eastside during rush hour feeling bitter about traffic on both bridges, just stay in the area and eat some dinner at The Commons. You could order anything from brisket to pasta with truffles, but we recommend a glass of wine and buttermilk-fried chicken strips followed by a skillet cookie, because you’re a grown adult and nobody can stop you.
Cascina Spinasse is one of the most upscale Italian restaurant experiences you can have in this city, so when you need to have a special occasion meal on a Monday night, keep it in mind. Plus, it’s a lot easier to get a short-notice table or spot at the big marble bar here when it’s not the weekend. The pastas, like fresh tajarin with ragu or cavatelli with braised beef, taste like they could be from Italy. Surprise a date with this one - they’ll forget about that on-hiatus argument you’re definitely going to lose.