Seattle dining with a pro

Browsing through Airbnb Experiences became one of my preferred ways to plan our days at a new destination. Sometimes only for inspiration, others to get to know a place from a local person’s perspective. Admittedly, there are a lot of hit and miss options. For instance, I’d never sign up for an Instagram photoshoot to have pictures of me taken at popular tourist spots. Likewise, I immediately skip all the yoga classes, pottery and calligraphy lessons.

Things that usually catch my attention are photography and food walks. This time it was my hubby who had stumbled on an experience that neither of us could resist. “Taste Seattle with 9 delicious courses,” it promised.

Now at this point, you might ask: “What do you need a food guide for???” I’ll tell you why: To introduce you to the latest up-and-coming spots that no tourist has yet discovered. In Seattle, where new places are cropping up daily and even people in the know find it hard to keep up this is not an easy task.

So, without giving it much thought we booked a tour with Joey for our last night in Seattle. The instruction that we received was not very detailed. We should show up in a bar close to the Pioneer Square, the oldest neighbourhood of Seattle. The rest we were to find out during the course of the evening.

During our short walk from the Light Rail station to the designated meeting point I suddenly had second thoughts:

  • Did Joey really mean we will be spending all our evening around the Pioneer Square? How is this a “delicious food scene” with all these homeless people hanging out?
  • What if I don’t like the other people in the group and have to spend the evening chit-chatting with some oversharing lady, listening about her grandchildren’s playgroup friends?
  • What if I don’t like the food? Just kidding, that never crossed my mind.

As soon as we walked into the Good Bar and Joey introduced us to our fellow diners for the evening all my doubts disappeared. We immediately hit it off and when the first food arrived served family style there were no awkward moments of how many helpings should each get, and no last bites left on the plates. You could notice that we were all a bunch of food lovers who share more than only dinner.

Chicken wings at the Good Bar
No food will make people drop down their guard like chicken wings served family style. Well played, Joey!

Joey turned out to be a great guide. A true food enthusiast who started his own business all around great dining experiences. Not only does he run progressive dinners in Seattle. He also takes his guests to multi-day destination dining trips across the US and even to Europe. I decided to pitch Slovenia as the next “undiscovered” destination to include in his itinerary 😊


Anyway, after the appetizers at the Good Bar which I could describe as modern American cuisine, we continued to Nirmal’s, an Indian restaurant that looks everything but Indian. The main dish consisted of delicious lamb, grilled cauliflower and curried stuffed peppers that I just couldn’t get enough of. By the time we got to the dessert at the Girin, a Korean restaurant and bar, I was already so full I could only have a taste of each of the three sweet treats. We washed the food down with homebrewed Makgeolli, a traditional Korean rice liquor. Cheers to a great evening!

Entrance to the Nirmal's Restaurant
Three restaurants in one evening – that’s what I call a perfect night out.

When we were returning to our Columbia City Airbnb apartment full to bursting I was only regretting that:

  • It was our last night in Seattle so we couldn’t return to all the three places to try the rest of the food;
  • We didn’t find out about Joey earlier because we would love to join him exploring other areas of the city through food;
  • I ate like there was no tomorrow.

If you don’t want to make the same mistakes as we did (apart from the last one, this one is all up to you), check out Joey’s Pretty Fork when you start planning your Seattle itinerary.