You know a restaurant must be doing something right when they’ve been around for a long time. We have several long-standing restaurants here in Washington, some of which are even located inside of century-old buildings. Check out these 12 highly-rated spots across the state where you can find great eats and years of local history.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Beth's Cafe, Seattle
(7311 Aurora Ave N.)
This iconic Greenlake cafe has served up some of the highest rated breakfast in Seattle since 1954. Originally established as a nickel slots gambling parlor, the diner is now famous for their hearty all-day breakfasts, including a 12-egg omelette and "all you can eat" hash browns.
Since they've been open, they've been featured on "Man Vs. Food" on the Travel Channel, and "Top 5 Big Breakfasts" on the Food Network.
2. Ferguson's Café, Spokane
(804 W Garland Ave)
Situated next to Mary Lou's Milk Bottle, this charming diner has served breakfast, sandwiches and burgers since the 1930s. They even still offer handmade milkshakes and a classic soda fountain like you'd see in the '50s. The historic building recently survived a fire in 2011, but thankfully, it was able to be fully restored.
Over the years, they've hosted the shooting of three films, including: "“Vision Quest,” “Benny & Joon” and “Why Would I Lie?”
3. The Windmill Restaurant, Wenatchee
(1501 N Wenatchee Ave)
This local favorite in Wenatchee has been serving quality steaks for over 80 years. On their menu, you'll find hand-cut grain-fed steaks along with an extensive wine list and slow-roasted prime rib.
4. The Shelburne Inn, Restaurant & Pub, Seaview
(4415 Pacific Way)
For well over 100 years, The Shelburne has been the longest continuously-operated hotel on the Washington coast. They also have a fantastic restaurant with breakfast and dinner options, along with an extensive wine list. Their dining room and pub even feature gorgeous Art Nouveau stained glass windows that date back to the late 1800s.
5. McMenamins Spar Cafe, Olympia
( 114 4th Ave E)
This classic cafe was family-owned for 60 years, then was handed over to another local Northwest family. Aside from appetizing food, they also have pinball games and handcrafted ales on tap.
6. Monterosso's Italian Restaurant, Richland
(1026 Lee Blvd)
The cool thing about this place in the Tri-Cities is that it's set inside of an old 1945 Pullman Train Car. They've been open since 1995, serving Italian dishes like pasta, panini sandwiches, and rich desserts to top it all off.
7. Horseshoe Cafe, Bellingham
(113 E Holly St, Bellingham)
Established in 1886, this is the oldest continuously operating cafe & cocktail lounge in Washington. They're open 24 hours every day, with free WiFi, comfort food and breakfast offered all day, including scrambles, omelettes, and French Toast (as pictured).
8. Virginia Inn, Seattle
(1937 1st Ave)
This building has had a long history since being established in 1903. It was turned into a restaurant and bar in 1981, and has since showcased hundreds of local work, becoming the city's first artbar. They offer a creative, rotating menu with Northwest-inspired dishes including salmon and shellfish.
9. The Historic Mint Restaurant & Alehouse, Enumclaw
(1608 Cole St)
The Historic Mint Restaurant recently re-opened in 2013, but they were originally established way back in 1906. They have a solid beer selection to pair with their homey dishes like burgers, sandwiches, flatbreads, soups and salads.
10. The Swiss Restaurant & Pub, Tacoma
(1904 Jefferson Ave)
The Swiss Restaurant is set in the middle of downtown, among museums, shops and the University of Washington Tacoma. They're located inside of a historic building that dates back to 1913, and feature craft beers, pub food, live music, a game room, and local artwork.
11. The Vintage Cafe, Everett
(1510 Hewitt Ave)
Over the last 120 years, this building downtown has been home to several various businesses, including: a photo and art shop, as well as a saloon, barber shop, The Olympic Cafe, and The Cave Ice Cream and Confection Store - which survived through Prohibition, and later became the first licensed tavern in downtown Everett (until 1976).
Now, years later, the owner has remodeled the building to its original floors and brick walls, and it serves as a restaurant with a variety of homemade comfort foods for every meal of the day. Try their Fish & Chips for lunch, or the Chicken Marsala for dinner.
12. Whitehouse-Crawford, Walla Walla
(55 W Cherry St)
Whitehouse-Crawford offers a true Walla Walla dining experience inside of an old 1904 sawmill. Their six-course tasting menu (with or without local wine pairings) is a popular favorite, as well as the house-made pasta.
Have you been to any of these places before? What are some of your favorite long-standing restaurants in Washington?