It’s hard to categorize the Eastlake Bar and Grill.
Located just south of the University Bridge, the restaurant and bar is under the radar of most students but not quite far south enough to be part of the downtown scene. Somewhat hidden underneath the I-5 bridge, its patronage seems to be drawn from all over the city.
The restaurant’s interior is heavy on wood, with large windows and a patio looking out onto Lake Union.
TVs playing ESPN are strategically placed around the bar so that, no matter where you look, at least one is always in your line of vision.
The decor is minimal aside from a few tiki-style decorations, and could best be summed up as semi-upscale suburban. If you’re from the Midwest and your parents come to visit, this would be a good place to take them that wouldn’t be too stereotypically Seattle.
The menu offers standard fare, such as the monster prime dip sandwich ($13.95) and more Northwest-centric dishes, such as grilled salmon ($13.95). The prices are another reason to get your parents to take you — most things on the menu are above $10.
For students, the best time to come would be during happy hour (3-6 p.m. and 10 p.m. -1 a.m.). The crowd at the bar during happy hour is generally a mix of students and older people meeting up for a beer after work. You’d be just as likely to run into a classmate here as a professor.
The happy hour menu offers appetizers and a few small entrees and sandwiches, with the option of adding French fries to any item for an extra dollar.
The grilled chicken sandwich $4.75 is average, but the less expensive sweet potato fries ($3.75), which come with a side of spicy-tangy chipotle mayo, are a good complement to a pint of any of the seasonal beers they have on tap ($3.95 during happy hour).
In addition to beer, the restaurant also offers one-spirit drinks, as well as their house margarita, both $3.95 for happy hour. The cocktails here are decent, but not the best, and at almost $4 for a cocktail or beer, the happy hour prices here are almost as much as the regular prices at most U-District bars.
The Eastlake Bar and Grill isn’t really worth trekking past the University Bridge for — but if your parents are in town and it’s a nice day out, take them there and sit on the deck for a nice, relatively unobstructed view of the city.
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