Wednesday, April 4, 2007


McMenamins Queen Anne location sits in a nondescript condo building surrounded by Seattle Center parking lots. Don't let that stop you. It's probably my favorite chain in town. Maybe because it's not a chain exactly; the individual locations are siblings, not clones. Or possibly it's because the food is good. But most probably it's because they make their own beer, and they do it really well.

turkey sandwich with cranberry sauce

I usually go to the Queen Anne location because it's an easy walk from my house. But they run several other establishments in town. Dad Watsons is in Fremont, and the Six-Arms is in Capitol Hill. They have other locations spread throughout Washington and their home state of Oregon. A lot of this post probably applies to most of the pubs (they have hotels and junk too), but I can only vouch for Queen Anne and Doc Watsons.

Rakka loves the turkey sandwich (above) with cranberry sauce. Says it's like thanksgiving in sandwich form. Which I suppose may be true. I really dig the mac and cheese, which is almost as good as Beechers. The high pasta is pretty good too.

chicken enchiladas

The chicken enchiladas are universally considered excellent, but sometimes a bit small. The tuna sandwich is tasty but not earth shattering. Rather like the fries, which I like but aren't the best in town. I won't comment on the burgers since I always order a gardenburger patty, which are the same ones you get in the grocery store; I can't really hold them accountable. They actually give the vegetari a choice of two brands (the other is boca), which is pretty cool.

I don't like nuts in salad usually. I'm told this makes me, um, nuts. The brewer's salad proves my sanity. It has lots of nuts. They're toasty warm, and the blue cheese and the marinated onions... Damn! it's good.

brewers salad

Speaking of good, let's talk about Beer. It's good here. Really good. X and K, who showed me the place, actually took me for the beer. The food was incidental. Personally, I'm a huge IPA fan, and it's great. But all of their beer is great, so maybe that's not a huge chunk of news. The beer is micro brewed. To the best of my knowledge the stuff served at the Queen Anne location is brewed right there.

The atmosphere is dark and cozy. Really dark and cozy. To the point that I had to bring a flashlight to get the food pictures. If you get there near sunset you'll actually notice them turning the lights down as the evening darkens. It's like they don't like contrast. But it's fun in that feeling-your-way-to-the-door sort of way.

dark and cosy

McMenamins (Queen Anne) on Urbanspoon
In conclusion, I like it. As if you couldn't tell. I don't go all the time. Not because it's not good enough, but because it's too good. Whenever they come round and ask "Another IPA?" I've said yes before I even process the question.


Ann said...

I agree with the review - great beer, and I've never been unhappy with a meal there. And the service is usually very friendly and efficient.

However, the name of the Fremont pub is DAD Watsons, not DOC Watsons.

leff said...

Oh, thanks! I checked it like three times, but I still got the place confused with Doc Watson. Changed in the text.