Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Best Downtown Seattle Restaurants, from the Hyatt

(Thanks Jennifer Huerta for compiling this incredibily helpful list, this blog is now complete!)

Restaurant: Sitka & Spruce |
Restaurant Description:  This restaurant sources high integrity ingredients from Washington State and the Pacific Northwest.  The menu is inspired by the products and flavors of Moorish influenced Spain, North Africa, Greece, Turkey, Syria, and Persia, supported by traditional rustic staples found in the United Kingdom, France, and Italy.   All the products used are of substantial quality, mostly sustainable production, and researched thoroughly.
Price Range: $10-25
Contact: 206.324.0662, 1531 Melrose Ave. E
Distance from Hotel:  .5 mile
Directions from Hotel: Head southwest on Pine St toward 7th Ave, Take the 1st left onto 7th Ave, Take the 1st left onto Pike St, Turn left at Melrose Ave.  Restaurant is on the left.

Restaurant: Café Campagne |
Restaurant Description:  “I could close my eyes and imagine I was in any café in Paris,” Jeremiah Tower, the renowned chef, is quoted to have said on his first visit to Café Campagne.  “Endearing,” “charming,” “quaint,” “bohemian,” are just a few of the words critics have used to describe Campagne’s younger sibling.  Café Campagne embraces many moods, many tastes, many budgets. Discover Café Campagne for yourself, and fall in love with your own petite slice of France.
Price Range: $10-$25
Contact: 206.728.2233, 1600 Post Alley at Pine Street, Seattle, WA 98101
Distance from Hotel:  .4 miles- 10 minute walk
Directions from Hotel: Walking or a very short cab ride.  Head southwest on Pine St toward 7th Ave Destination will be on the right

Restaurant: Salty’s on Alki |
Restaurant Description:  Terrific food. Live music. Sensational bar. Flawless service. Picture-perfect views from virtually every table. Dramatic sunsets. Busy ferries. Curious seals and raucous seagulls. Every dining moment brings an energetic and captivating view of life in and around the Seattle waterfront. It's our recipe for the perfect dining experience. Come dressed up or casual. If you want to capture the Seattle Skyline, this is the place.
Price Range: $15-$75
Contact: 206.937.1600, 1936 Harbor Avenue. S.W. Seattle, WA 98126
Distance from Hotel:  5.7 mi – about 12 minutes
Directions from Hotel: Head southwest on Pine St toward 7th Ave, Turn left at the 3rd cross street onto 5th Ave, Turn right at Columbia St, Keep left at the fork, Take the ramp onto WA-99 S, Take the exit toward W Seattle Bridge, Merge onto W Seattle Bridge, Take the exit toward Harbor Ave SW, Turn right at Harbor Ave SW Destination will be on the right.

Restaurant: Serious Pie |
Restaurant Description:  NO RESERVATIONS! Gourmet pizzas, casual setting. Restaurant boasts a 600 degree stone-encased applewood-burning oven, house made charcuterie, and artisan cheeses from around the world.
Price Range: $10-20
Contact: 206.838.7388, 316 Virginia
Distance from Hotel:  .5 mile
Directions from Hotel: Head southwest on Pine St toward 7th Ave, Turn right at 3rd Ave, Take the 2nd right onto Virginia St. Restaurant is on the left. Destination will be on the left.

Restaurant: Purple Café |
Restaurant Description: A multifaceted food and wine concept that merges casual sophistication with an upbeat metropolitan style. We feature a global wine selection coupled with a menu that blends classic American styles with seasonal northwest ingredients. The atmosphere is often described as an urban retreat with rustic elements.
Price Range: $10-$35
Contact: 206.829.2280, 1225 4th Ave, Seattle, WA 98101
Distance from Hotel:  .5 miles- 10 minute walk
Directions from Hotel: Walking or a very short cab ride.  Depart Pine St toward 7th Ave , Turn left onto 5th Ave, Turn right onto Seneca, Turn right onto 4th Ave

Restaurant: Pink Door |
Restaurant Description: Along the quaint Post Alley of Seattle’s Pike Place Market, the Pink Door tempts with homespun Italian-American food.    All dishes draw upon the freshness and seasonal bounty of farms here in the Northwest.  From the conversation that flows as liberally as the Barolo, to the provocative – always free – live entertainment, the Pink Door offers a warm, lively respite from the ordinary world. 
Price Range: $15-25
Contact: (206) 443-3241, 1919 Post Alley
Distance from Hotel:  .5 miles
Directions from Hotel: Head west (toward the water) on Pine Street to First Avenue.   Turn right on Pine and continue down to Stewart Street.  Turn left on Stewart then left on Post Alley.  The restaurant is on the right side – there is no sign saying, “Pink Door” however, there is a pink metal door. 

Restaurant: The Four Swallows |
Restaurant Description:  Seeking a different dining adventure? Take the 30-minute ferry ride from downtown Seattle to Bainbridge Island and discover The Four Swallows.  A few walkable blocks from the ferry landing, this lovely restaurant is located in an historic farmhouse where the staff is inviting and convivial. A seasonal menu changes daily, offering a small selection of dishes ranging from fresh-off-the-boat scallops to grilled Carlton Farms pork chop paired with sweet-savory red onion marmalade.  Pastas and pizzas along with decadent desserts round out the visit.
Price Range: $15-35
Contact:  (206) 842-3397, 481 Madison Ave. N., Bainbridge Island*
Distance from Hotel:  10 miles
Directions from Hotel: To get to the ferry terminal:  take Pine Street west (toward the water).  At 4th Avenue turn left and follow it to Madison Street.  Turn right and continue down Madison to 1st Avenue.  There is a pedestrian overpass at 1st and Madison that will take you directly into the ferry terminal.  Once on Bainbridge Island, leave the ferry terminal and follow Olympic Dr. to Winslow Way.  Turn right on Winslow Way then right at Madison Ave. The restaurant is on the left side of the street, next door to the Pavilion Movie Theater.

*Please leave extra time for commuting and check with the concierge for a ferry schedule.

Restaurant: Crush |
Restaurant Description: Owned and operated by Chef Jason Smith.  Modern Northwest cuisine pairing exceptionally fresh ingredients with careful preparation.  Large wine list. Perfect place for foodies. 
Price Range:  $20-$75
Contact: (206) 302-7874, 2319 E Madison Street
Distance from Hotel:  1.8 Miles
Directions from Hotel: Depart 8th Ave toward Olive Way, Turn right onto Olive Way, Turn right onto Boren Ave, Turn left onto Pike St, Road name changes to E Pike St, Bear left onto E Madison St, Arrive at 2319 E Madison St, Seattle, WA 98112 on the right (The last intersection is 23rd Ave, If you reach 24th Ave E, you've gone too far)

Restaurant: Wild Ginger | Wild Ginger
Restaurant Description:  (From the Website) The food at Wild Ginger spans the eastern Pacific Rim from China to Indonesia, and Malaysia to Vietnam. We pride ourselves on following traditional recipes from these distinctive regions and insist on house-made ingredients. Chefs make fresh coconut milk, spicy chili sambals, delicate egg noodles and our pungent oyster sauce all from scratch. To achieve the sublime flavors of the East there is no substitute for the time-honored customs of these rich and ancient cultures.
Price Range: $5-$25
Contact: (206) 623-4450, 1401 3rd Ave
Distance from Hotel:  0.5 miles
Direction from Hotel:  Head southeast on 8th Ave toward Pine St, Turn right at Pike St, Turn left at 3rd Ave (20 minute walk)

Restaurant: Black Bottle |
Restaurant Description:  Black Bottle is right in the heart of Belltown. Good place for drinks and appetizers such as curried potatoes, flatbreads (proscuiutto is wonderful), steak bites & my personal favorite, the broccoli which sounds strange but is delish.
Price Range: $5-$15
Contact: 2600 First Ave, 206.441.1500
Distance from Hotel:  .95 miles
Directions from Hotel: SW on Pine Street &take a right onto First Avenue, Black Bottle is on your right

Restaurant: Ettas |
Restaurant Description:  This is a famous Seattle Tom Douglas restaurant. Great views of the sounds and short walk to the Pike Place market. Known for their seafood (crab cakes are not to be missed!). They also have a wonderful breakfast, the Dungeness crab eggs Benedict is my all time favorite.
Price Range: $10-$26
Contact: 206.443.6000, 2020 Western Avenue
Distance from Hotel:  .59 miles
Directions from Hotel: Head southwest on Pine Street, right on Pike Place, left on Virginia Street, right onto Western Avenue, Etta’s is on the right

Restaurant: Smash Wine Bar & Restaurant |
Restaurant Description: Opened in April 2006, Smash Wine Bar & Bistro is a Wallingford establishment where wine and food collide. Smash features an array of wine and cheese flights, bistro bites and entrees, 45 different glass wine pours (including 3 and 6 oz. tastes), and their signature "Smashtini" martini menu.
Price Range: $10-25
Contact: 206.547.3232, 1401 North 45th Street
Distance from Hotel:  4 miles
Directions from Hotel: Take a cab from the hotel to 45th and Interlake Ave N (in the Wallingford neighborhood).   

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Top 10 Must Do's when you visit Seattle to attend the GMN Conference in March

1. Pike Place Market

Yes, we have all seen markets -- but have you ever seen one where a 4lb Salmon is flying through the air in front of you as fish hockers jockey for your business? Seriously, you can try local artisan cheeses and wines, visit the 100 plus vendors booths that are selling their wares that consist of everything from glass blown vases to homemade soap. You can even visit the first original Starbucks or see where the Beatles performed an impromptu concert from a balcony across from the market.

2. Traditional Pacific Northwest Cuisine

What does that mean? It is an approach/philosophy to food: less seasoning is more, locally sourced food (50 mile radius from farm to table), seafood preferably, if it’s a steak it should be grass fed. The chef Tom Douglas in particular has really promoted the PNW concept of food well. And not to plug for him deliberately, but if you are going to eat one nice dinner you cannot go wrong with Etta’s and Dahlia Lounge, two of his restaurants located in Downtown Seattle. You may want to make a reservation as they can both get quite busy.

Lastly take time to enjoy the locally brewed beers; the Pacific Northwest takes great pride in their local breweries, whose brew you can find at any serious Seattle restaurant. Try and of the Elysian Brewery beers, or the Pike Kilt Lifter after you visit the market. Finally you should not leave Seattle until you have had an IPA if you like a hoppy beer.

3. Seattle Duck Tour

A must do to orient yourself to Seattle and a great way to shake off jetlag and forget work. You'll see all the major sights of Seattle including the Space Needle, the Seattle waterfront, Safeco Field and Qwest Field, historic Pioneer Square, Pike Place Market, the downtown shopping district and funky Fremont neighborhood. Then, SPLASH into Lake Union for a look at Gasworks Park, the Sleepless in Seattle houseboat and a breathtaking view of the skyline. Along the way, the Captains will play music, share jokes and tell you about the city! You'll see the same sights of the city whether you depart from our location at 5th Avenue & Broad Street or Westlake Center.

4. Olympic Sculpture Park

The Olympic Sculpture Park has transformed a nine-acre industrial site into open and vibrant green space for art. This new waterfront park gives Seattle residents and visitors the opportunity to experience a variety of sculpture in an outdoor setting, while enjoying the incredible views and beauty of the Olympic Mountains and Puget Sound. Admission is free.

5. Ferry to Bainbridge Island

It’s easy to catch a ferry from the docks in downtown Seattle. Then spend a relaxing half hour crossing Elliot Bay to Bainbridge Island. During the ride, check out a new perspective on the Seattle skyline and admire the Olympic Mountains. Bainbridge Island is home to 20,000 residents, many of whom use the ferry for daily commuting. Once on the island you can rent bikes or walk into the town of Winslow, where there are shops, galleries and delicious dining options. Nature lovers should plan to walk through the Bloedel Reserve to see Pacific Northwest wildlife. When you are ready to return, hop on another ferry and you will be back to the urban life in no time.

6. Seattle Public Library

The downtown public library building is so unique they offer daily tours to showcase its architectural features. The modern building opened in 2004 and was designed by Rem Koolhaas and Joshua Ramus. Time Magazine listed the building as one of the best of the year and the Washington Posted declared it one of the best new buildings of the decade. Inside there are open areas for community gatherings, dizzying views of the city, special areas designed for teens and kids, public artwork, a coffee cart, a gift shop and of course tons of reading material. And if you need a good place to check email, there are over 400 public computers. The public meeting room level has twisty corridors painted shiny red that have been described as either “groovy” or “like navigating a colon.” Check it out for yourself and see what you think.

7. Queen Anne Hill

Located directly north of downtown, Queen Anne Hill is a great neighborhood to explore. The main street at the top of the hill has an array of restaurants to sample the Pacific Northwest cuisine (Item #2 on our list), trendy boutiques and funky cafes. From Kerry Park you can enjoy gorgeous views of the city. The residential section is a mix of old mansions and modern architecture. Linking the upper and lower neighborhoods is a series of pedestrian staircases. You can buy a map of these stairways at the Queen Anne Books, a great place.

8. Seattle Underground Tour (history buffs will love)

The tour begins at Doc Maynard's, a restored 1890s public house, then goes underground to visit the abandoned, sunken storefronts of what was once ground-level Pioneer Square. Their well-informed guides recount the role of the modern toilet in Seattle history, the origin of the term Skid Road, and take you to some places where ghosts are said to hang out, all the while telling hilarious stories and recanting Seattle history.

In the olden days, downtown Seattle was chaotic-- built on a tidal plain-- with very poor drainage. After the Great Fire in 1889, city planners wanted to raise the streets to solve the city's growing sewage problems, but the downtown building owners, who didn't want to wait for the city to get to work, rebuilt their buildings at the original level.

Many years later, the city of Seattle raised the streets, leaving sidewalks and entrances as much as 36 feet below street level. For several years, pedestrians clambered up and down between street level and building entrance on ladders, but eventually the building entrances were raised, and the old sidewalks covered over, creating the area called the Seattle Underground.

The UNDERGROUND TOUR is a leisurely, guided walking tour beneath Seattle’s sidewalks and streets. As you roam the subterranean passages that once were the main roadways and first-floor storefronts of old downtown Seattle, our guides regale you with the stories our pioneers didn’t want you to hear. It’s history with a twist!

9. Seattle Aquarium

Would you like to stand within a circle of glowing jellyfish? Run your fingers along a sea anemone’s soft tentacles. Delight in the antics of the sea otters (insanely cute and fun to watch). In Seattle Aquarium you can see the world's first aquarium-based salmon ladder and fish hatchery and witness the entire life cycle of Pacific salmon. It is important to point out that the Aquarium is the first institution in the world to successfully raise sea otters from the conception to the adulthood and is the only facility in the United States with that distinctive feature. Today, these lovely creatures warm the hearts of numerous visitors, as well as show the way for Seattle Aquarium researchers of how otters can better survive in their natural surroundings.

Lastly you have to see the world’s largest giant, and I mean GIANT Pacific octopus that was raised from conception to adulthood in the aquarium. Its name is the Dark Avenger, weighing over 50 pound and residing in a habitat, built to display the largest giant Pacific octopus ever seen.

10. Discovery Park

If you get overloaded with the urban scene, Discovery Park awaits. It is Seattle’s largest park with 534 acres of woods, meadows, and two miles of protected tidal beaches. Starting at the Visitors Center you can take a three mile hiking loop through beautiful forest and then out to a bluff overlooking Elliot Bay and the Olympic Mountains. Those with extra energy can hike down the beach and check out the lighthouse. The park is also home to the Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center, where you can check out Native American cultural activities and art exhibits. (This activity is easiest if you have a rental car, but the Seattle bus system will take you there too.)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Making the Pitch, Why you should attend the GMN conference!

Hello all,

I thought we should share this email of our own efforts of internally promoting the GMN conference in Seattle to give others idea's as we only have a few weeks before it is here.

Thanks to Jana Fry and Karen Johnson for collaborating on this one.

Hi BLANK et al,

I wanted to let you know about the Grants Managers Network’s annual conference that is coming up on March 21-23, just around the corner.  It promises to be a great conference, and I hope you will think about attending since it ties directly into your work and provides a substantial opportunity for training on best practices in making and managing grants.  Another reason to take advantage of it now is because it is literally happening in our backyard – Seattle.  This likely will not happen again for a long time.  Budgets are always tight, but with the location being here there is no reason for you not to attend if you’re interested.  
Here is why you should attend:

·         Bill Sr. will be the plenary speaker, need I say more?
·         Awesome training – here are just few samples of the sessions being provided:
o   Beyond PowerPoint: New Ideas for Presenting Your Grant Data
o   Working With Your Foundation Team: Redefining the Boundaries of Grants Management
o   How to Prepare for an Audit
o   Grant Coding: Developing or Upgrading Your Foundation’s Coding
o   Demystifying the IRS: A window into the Exempt Organization Division
o   Expenditure Responsibility: A Step-by-Step Guide
o   Anatomy of Grant Letter: Dissecting and Analyzing Clauses
o   Accepting and Reviewing Proposals: Best Practices in the Field
o   The Tale of Two Sectors: Private and Public
·        Network, network, network!  This event will be packed with staff from many, many foundations both big and small covering a wide range of philanthropic interests
·         Meet the Pacific Northwest Chapter of GMN (It is a collection of folks from foundations in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska that come together to exchange best practices and have a good time.  We’re currently forming committees if you would like to get involved.)
·         And, most importantly your fantastic GD GM team will be there . . . to welcome you and help introduce you to others

So check it out here and read below for more information about GMN.  Even if you’re not able to attend the conference, please feel free to join GMN (membership is free!) to take advantage of online resources as well as the local chapter meetings.


P.S.  Do you need help making the case to your manager or are not sure if you have a strong business case?   Please see the helpful sample letter here.

More Background info:The Grants Managers Network (GMN) is a national organization that seeks to improve grantmaking by advancing the knowledge, skills, and abilities of grants management professionals and by leading grantmakers to adopt and incorporate effective practices that benefit the philanthropic community.  GMN has 1,700 members from 1,000 grantmaking organizations including small family foundations, prominent national foundations, grantmaking public charities, and socially responsible corporations.  These individuals serve their organizations in many roles and are identified by a variety of titles including grants administrators, grants managers, directors of grants management, financial officers, and program officers/associates.  GMN is based in Washington, D.C. and has 13 regional chapters that connect members in local settings for professional and leadership development opportunities.  The Pacific Northwest regional group will meet two or three times this year in addition to the national annual conference.