Seafood gets a lot of love in Seattle. For example, just try to get a table at The Walrus & The Carpenter at 5pm on a Friday and see how hard you fail. Or count the number of out-of-towners you see eating chowder out of bread bowls at Pike Place. But this town is about so much more than shellfish - we have excellent steak offerings, too, and we’re pretty proud of that.
When you want to eat some of said excellent steak, but you don’t want to put on a fancy outfit and spend more money on a ramekin of creamed spinach than a few months of Spotify Premium, here’s where to go.
Bateau delivers the full steakhouse experience (i.e. excellent meat and sides) without feeling stuffy in any way. The interior looks like an urban garden party, complete with decorative china, slate tables, and a suspiciously calm atmosphere. But don’t go thinking this place is soft - the display window of raw cow torsos proves that Bateau is all business when it comes to beef. Not to mention that the fries are cooked in tallow. Select your steak from the massive chalkboard of custom-butchered options, and pair it with a compound butter and excellent sides like kale gratin and the aforementioned fries. Even though this is a steak guide, we’re still obligated to suggest that you order the off-menu burger for the table.
Manolin is known for its seafood, but they also have an excellent steak, cooked on the same grill they use to sear fish (it looks like some kind of a medieval torture device, but it definitely works). The dining room is one of the more attractive restaurant spaces in Seattle, and the starters (like salt and pepper plantain chips and rockfish ceviche) are definitely worth your time. It’s a Greatest Hit for a reason.
Copine is on the expensive side, but it still has a relaxed feel. Plus, the wagyu ribeye is huge, cooked perfectly, and comes with a bordelaise we would syphon into a jar if we could. The cocktails are excellent, too - homemade smoked cherries and all. So this place is ideal for a special occasion, even if you’re eating with people who don’t like steak. You are not one of those people, of course.
Bastille is a nice, dimly-lit French spot where you should come on a date or bring your parents, but you should not feel like you have to wear a three piece suit and walk in knowing how to pronounce Fourme d’Ambert. The menu is strong in general, but the steak frites is probably the best thing on it. When you have a super tender piece of beef, a green herb sauce, red wine reduction, perfect fries, and garlic aioli, it doesn’t matter that you don’t know any French beyond the lyrics to “Lady Marmalade.”
Joule is a Korean steakhouse that’s great for big groups. We love the marinated short rib steak with kalbi sauce and the even-better ribeye with spicy peanut oil and beef belly la lot. Plus, there’s bright blue wallpaper that looks like something from a trippy Victorian dream sequence at first, but upon further inspection is actually patterns of diamond rings, roosters, and ribeye steaks. How appropriate.
This Mexican place in Capitol Hill is not kidding around when it comes to beef. You can choose from nine different cuts of steak, from wagyu to porterhouse, and some of them even come with grilled chorizo and a baby quesadilla. If you need to prove to yourself that you can achieve your dreams, get the 44 oz. tomahawk and finish it. You need a win.
Red Cow specializes in steak frites, and they’re pretty committed. Start with some charcuterie (we like the short rib croquettes), and then select one of seven steak cuts paired with sauces like a red wine reduction or horseradish cream. Each steak comes with crispy rosemary-infused fries and garlic aioli. If you don’t want a steak, we’re not sure why you’re reading this guide, but the burger is a good runner-up.
As you can probably tell from the name, FlintCreek Cattle Co. is another spot that specializes in steak. They have the usual suspect cuts (ribeye, filet mignon, Delmonico, etc.), all served with melted paprika-anchovy butter on top, and next-level steakhouse sides like parmesan potatoes dauphinoise with nutmeg cream and green beans with bacon and bonito flakes. Eat alone at the bar, or bring some other people and sit at a table, if you’re into sharing.
Pair5501 30th Ave NE
Pair might seem a little old-fashioned on the inside - in a good way. It’s a bistro that feels like it was plucked from the French countryside and dropped over here on the West Coast, complete with its antique picnic baskets, gingham drapes, and acoustic guitar soundtrack. Everything on the menu is excellent, but the steak frites is the standout. The meat sits in a red wine sauce, has a ton of flavor, and cuts like butter. It is also topped with butter.
No matter how casual the environment you eat it in, steak can get expensive. So the fact that this Middle Eastern spot does herb-marinated hanger steak on its charcoal grill for $32 a pound is a useful thing to know. The red, white, and blue chairs and semi-spooky wall art make the space feel like a Fourth of July barbecue hosted by Tim Burton, but we find this charming. Pair your steak with sauces like black garlic aioli and chimichurri - and don’t forget some hummus, charred vegetables, and grilled flatbread. Wash it all down with a beet margarita.
At Trove, you’ll be grilling your own dinner. And while all the meats on the menu are good, we particularly recommend the kalbi-marinated wagyu tri-tip. Load on the soybean paste and radishes, then wrap your protein in a lettuce leaf and enjoy a steak meal that’s actually on the lighter side. Which is convenient, seeing as you’re going to have to get at least one soft-serve parfait.