Our employees are expected to develop and elevate their standard of taste in food and restaurants. They can’t produce good products and customer experiences until they’re familiar with the highest standard of food and customer service. We do our best to expose employees to higher standards of food and restaurants (and music, art, film, etc.) so they become intolerant of mediocrity in life.
Some associate good food with fancy, expensive food. Not true, as there are many “expensive” restaurants that serve awful or boring food paired with inconsiderate service. Food stalls throughout Asia (esp. Taipei!) serve great comfort food and snacks at low prices. Good food doesn’t have to be expensive. It just needs to be challenging, engaging, soothing, and fulfilling.
Anyway, here’s a list of Seattle area food establishments that most people can afford, including teens who frequent McDonald’s and Subway and Jamba Juice. One caveat is that some of these are affordable only if all involved are willing to share each order, eat family style.
Black Bottle (Belltown): Surprisingly large portions, hipster vibe (that I’m tired of and too old for), ideal for teens. Crispy fried chicken and collard greens ($7), ceviche and tortillas ($9), chocolate cake and lemon gelato ($8) is enough to feed three. That’s like 32 bucks w/tax and $5 tip. Three McDonald’s value meals = $27.
Le Pichet (near Pike Market): French bistro, where 2 can share a Baguette Sandwich ($6.50, “Your choice of Paris ham, jambon cru, pâté, chicken liver terrine, gruyère or your choice from the cheese board”) and a tuna salad ($8.00, “Italian tuna conserve tossed with marinated chickpeas, baby artichokes, Niçoise olives and rosemary-red wine vinaigrette”). Lunch for $19, tip and tax included. Two $5 Subway footlongs, two sodas, one bag of potato chip plus tax = $16.
BCD (Lynnwood, H-Mart plaza): Korean, food court setting. Two can share an order of seafood soup and sizzling kalbi beef ($14). Comes with rice and 5-7 side dishes, including fish and kimchi. An extra bowl of rice is $2. Free hot tea. Tax and tip = $18. Red Robin’s Tavern Double with BOTTOMLESS FRIES = $7 times 2 = $14. Tax and tip, no drink = $18.
Maximillien’s Happy Hour (Pike Market): Penn Cove Mussel Marinière Butter, white wine, shallots, garlic and parsley ($4); Belgium Fries cornet served with two dipping sauces ($4); Goat Cheese Mousse with roasted garlic and herbs. Baguette croutons ($4); Bucket of 6 Kronenberg Beer ($15). Tax and tip = $35. View of sound. Red Lobster’s Shrimp Festival = $13 timess 2 = $26. Tax and tip = $33 without booze.
It doesn’t cost much to eat well, in establishments that provide knowledgeable, charming and responsible service (instead of polite and obedient service). There’s no reason why typical teenagers can’t improve their palates. If they can afford Sorelli pizza or McDonald’s or Red Robin or Jamba Juice or a movie ticket to watch Twilight, they can afford good food and a varied diet.
Some other affordable food establishments:
Facing East (downtown Bellevue)
Chez Shea’s Happy Hour (Pike Market)
Toulouse Petit Happy Hour (Lower Queen Anne)
Brooklyn Seafood (Downtown Seattle)
Il Bistro (Pike Market)
And many, many more interesting and affordable options, from Columbia City to Shoreline, Central District to Mukilteo.