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Favorite restaurants of the year

Providence Cicero says of Capitol Hill restaurant Momiji has perhaps the most amazing restaurant interior in Seattle. (Image courtesy Momiji)

Looking over 12 months of restaurant reviews, Let’s Eat host and Seattle Times critic Providence Cicero has compiled a list of her favorites.

“It’s always hard to narrow it down to 10 or 12. What I like about this year’s crop though, it’s really diverse,” says Providence.

The following list, in no particular order, are tops among all the places she reviewed this year.


“Altura is a restaurant that I absolutely fell in love with the minute I walked into it,” says Providence. “Nathan Lockwood is the chef. He is just endlessly imaginative and his food is just beautifully prepared.”

Providence says they don’t miss a beat in service at this Italian restaurant, and its intimate setting would make it a perfect date night stop.

Terra Plata

“Tamara [Murphy] is doing her kind of quintessential Northwest meets Mediterranean food,” says Providence.

Terra Plata describes itself as an “earth to plate” concept restaurant.

Providence says this restaurant in the Melrose Market is “great by day and even better at night.”

bin on the lake

This Kirkland restaurant serves 80 different wines by the glass, and Providence says they have great food to match.

“It could so easily have been a humdrum hotel restaurant, but the new chef Dylan Giordan is really kicking up the food a notch or two,” says Providence. “It’s a gorgeous setting on the lake and now I think the food is worth the trip, and the price tag.”

Anthony’s Seafood Grill at Alderwood Mall

“I am so impressed with this local chain and the quality they maintain,” says Providence.

Though this Anthony’s doesn’t have a water view, Providence says it’s still a beautiful setting.

“The interior is so attractive. They’ve got all these glass art installations. I mean who needs a view when you have that. It’s at Alderwood Mall, go figure.”

Restaurant Zoe

“Scott Staples and his team there are so solid,” says Providence. “The food is always seasonal. It’s great. It’s layered with flavor. It’s robust and the cocktails are good.”

After moving from its first location in Belltown, Providence says they’ve settled in nicely in the new Capitol Hill digs.

“I love the new space,” says Providence. “I think they kept the spirit of the old Zoe in a much more exciting space.”

Mezcaleria Oaxaca

This Mexican restaurant on Queen Anne is “one of the best, if not the best,” says Providence.

She says you could almost miss the restaurant if you were just walking by, but people rave about it. Providence recommends trying the Pozole.

Oddfellows Cafe

“What I love about Oddfellows is they’re doing it right morning, noon and night,” says Providence, who praises their breakfast pastries, lunchtime sandwiches, and “vibrant salads.”

“They are satisfying daily needs for the people on Capitol Hill and I think it’s great.”

Ma’ono Fried Chicken and Whiskey

“It is worth a trip to West Seattle for the fried chicken alone,” says Providence.

The restaurant used to only serve it’s fried chicken on Monday, but now you can get it any day of the week, but Providence warns the chickens are very sought after.

“There’s a limit on the chickens, so you should make a reservation, and reserve your chicken when you do.”


Providence says Momiji is a playful, contemporary Japanese restaurant.

“They’ve got like 60 sushi roll combinations and some of them are very, very wacky, but they work. The ones I had work.”

The oyster shooter there, provided one of her favorite bites of the year, Providence says.

She also has high praise for the interior setup of two dining rooms situated around a Japanese garden, calling it the “most amazing restaurant interior in Seattle.”

Restaurant Marche

Providence says this restaurant on Bainbridge Island is really worth a ferry ride.

“If you’re just walking around Bainbridge stop in and have a little pate and a glass of wine. It’s just a friendly, casual French bistro.”

Providence says owners Greg Atkinson and wife Betsy do fantastic things with the bounty of Northwest resources around Bainbridge.

Let’s Eat can be heard on KIRO Radio Saturdays at 4 p.m., Sunday at noon. Available anytime ON DEMAND at

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