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Enjoying the beach life at Pacific Room on Alki

 

Northwest cuisine, world-class cocktails, an elevated wine list, tasty beers, and one of Seattle’s best vistas await you at this new Alki Beach destination

Like so many parts of Seattle, the Alki Beach neighborhood is changing. The strip of businesses along Alki Avenue once featured little more than bike rental huts, snack shacks, and dingy sports bars, but over the last few years an air of sophistication has wafted in on the tide, bringing upscale dining and drinking options to the beach. The latest example, Pacific Room recently opened at 2820 Alki Ave. SW. (Pictured above: Assistant GM Derek Delos Santos and General Manager Kurt Niemeyer.)

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The space is gorgeous, right across the street from the beach, with roll-up glass doors that open to patio seating. It is easy to imagine long day-drinking sessions here–sipping on cocktails, nursing beers, munching on prawns, people watching and enjoying the amazing view. Inside, sophistication and comfortable elegance drip from the walls, with a huge bar on the left and long, festively lit fireplaces built into the right wall. At the back of the room, a performance area that will regularly host live music.

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First up, the food at Pacific Room is top notch Northwestern fare, focusing on responsibly sourced, local ingredients as much as possible. The sockeye salmon served on a bed of to-die-for risotto, is sublime—rich and creamy risotto with deep enough flavor to stand up to the lushness of the salmon. The coconut prawns, which is too often a freezer-to-fryer dish at lesser restaurants, jump off the plate and into your mouth—jumbo prawns battered in house-made tempura coconut batter, lightly fried and served with sweet chili sauce and tangy, citrusy pineapple salsa.

Sample-size portion of the salmon and risotto.
A sample-size portion of the salmon and risotto.

Yes, the food is amazing and you cannot beat the location, but let’s talk about the libations.

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For the beer lover, you’ll find some local favorites on tap, like Reuben’s Brews’ Pilsner, Fremont Brewing’s Dark Start Oatmeal Stout, and at least a couple of IPAs. When I was there, Georgetown Brewing and Bale Breaker Brewing were representing the IPA category. Because this is a beach bar, do not begrudge them for having a couple of less-adventurous draft options for the mainstream beer drinkers, like Rainier and Stella.

The wine list is eye-popping. Names like Hightower, Forgeron, Tamarack, and The Walls adorn the menu. Many of these, and others, are available by the glass as well as the bottle. I enjoyed a glass of Cadaretta SBS (a Sauv Blanc/Semillon blend) with my coconut prawns and it was a seamless pairing.

The Port of Seattle.
The Port of Seattle.

As for the cocktails, expect no shortage of creativity. Dan Stevens, the bar manager, loves to express himself through booze. His passion is obvious. I fancy myself a whiskey man, so I ordered up a Port of Seattle, which consists of Bourbon, tawny port, Black Walnut Bitters, Angostura Bitters, sugar, cherry, and orange peel. Sort of a new, Seattle version of an Old Fashioned.

I also sampled a few other cocktails, including the Gooseberry Gimlet, which is made with gin, golden gooseberries, lime, and sugar. The mixologist was nice enough to provide a couple of gooseberries on the side, which was nice because I’d never actually tried a gooseberry.

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The rotating margarita, intended to showcase whatever is fresh for the season, was made with fresh raspberries. The aroma of fresh berries was amazing, and the flavor was vibrant and super juicy, cleverly and dangerously disguised the tequila.

Other cocktails on the menu that night included Arm Candy (vodka, ginger rhubarb liquor, Aperol, lemon and agave), Lost Paddle (rum, lime, banana liquor, pineapple, and Tiki bitters), and Mezcal Fizz (Mezcal, rose liquor, hibiscus syrup, lemon, and egg white). And there are more.

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Whether you’re seeking an inspired cocktail, some vino, a tasty beer, or some seriously killer Northwest-style grub, Pacific Room has you covered. Like the libations served up at the bar, those patio seats out front will be highly coveted all summer, for sure.

 



6 comments

  1. I’ve lived in West Seattle for over 40 years and frequent Alki often and decided to do a bit of research on this. There comments about Alki seem quite arrogant. Who are these people and where did they come from?

    There’s no lack of sophistication on Alki. There are amazing entablements with hard working people putting out a great product! Pegus, Christos, Dukes, Alki Café, El Chupacabra, Sun Fish, Spuds, Pepperdocks, West Seattle Brewery, The Beach Pub, Cactus, Salty’s and Top Pot! Most of these businesses have been around for over 20 years! Yes, they’re all not white table cloths with a wine Somalia, but all have their own identity and great people that work there. Perhaps there are referencing the 1970’s!
    My husband and I frequented the prior establishment, Hawks Nest a few times for SeahawksHawks games and a great time. They obviously ran into trouble as did B’s PoyBoy, another establishment with about the same life span. Both had a great staff and were upgrades to the prior enablement’s. I was sad to see them go.

    I will definitely check them out. Excited about the music. The prices do seem very steep. We dine at Jack sand Dukes often in West Seattle . Hopefully this will be a good third option.

  2. Hi, I’m “these people” you mentioned. I’ve lived in West Seattle for over 20 years. In other words, I’m new to the neighborhood. Though I am new, I am entitled to my opinion. If you visit Pacific Room or Il Nido around the corner, perhaps you’ll agree that they’re more sophisticated than blue & white checked table cloths, a punk rock burrito place, and a decades-old pizza joint. (All of which I love, btw.) Maybe you won’t agree. You are entitled to your opinion too.

    1. Hi
      I very much agree with you. My ‘these people’ comment was directed at the proprietors of the establishment. I was very put off by the opening paragraph of this article. It seemed to throw the past owners under the bus and disregard the other establishments.

      My husband and I are fortunate enough to be able to dine out a few times a week. I like to know if my money is being spent on greed or passion. I read this blog because it points me to passion, and that’s why I love local craft beer! My ‘spidey sense’ is up on this one as I don’t see a clear path to that. Besides the Chef, I see a few kids with limited experience admittedly hired off of Craigslist. Who’s the owner and financing this project ? Possibly the same group that failed in the WS junction with Vine & Spoon.

      Anyway. I love this blog, especially the maps of breweries. Every time I’m out and about I check the map to try and hit a few spots. Keep up the good work! And yes, Pegasus needs to up their beer game. Perhaps some rotation!
      Cheers!

      1. The past owners are the same owners. Just give them a chance already, no need for pre-judgements.

  3. Yeah, but it isn’t bad for a place that doesn’t think of itself as a beer joint. Perhaps if their crowd encourages better attention to beer, they’ll listen. Hopefully they don’t get pushed around by the distributors. The management do not seem to be beer people, so hopefully their customers can help drive their decisions.

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