Olympia, the state capital of Washington state, is a wonderful place to visit. Within the city, there is a diverse range of historical and family attractions to visit, and there are also beautiful outdoor spaces to visit both in the city and the surrounding area. During your visit, you will probably want to dine out at some of the local restaurants, and there is plenty of choices available. These range from fine dining restaurants to casual eateries, and there are options for a variety of cuisines. To help you find a restaurant to suit your tastes and budget, here are the 10 best places to eat in Olympia, WA.
10. Budd Bay Café
Fish and seafood enthusiasts will love Budd Bay Café, which is a waterfront fish house that boasts views of Budd Bay. The restaurant is on Columbia Street NW, and it is open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner service daily. It is one of the best restaurants in Olympia if you want brunch or lunch, and the Sunday brunch menu is particularly good. Fish and seafood dishes are the highlights of the menu, so expect to see dishes such as crab cakes, seafood omelet, seared tuna, and baked salmon. However, there are also steaks, other meat dishes, and vegetarian options on the menu for those who are not fans of seafood.
9. Cascadia Grill
If you want to enjoy an affordable family meal in a casual setting, then one of Olympia’s best options is Cascadia Grill. At this restaurant, you will find steaks, handmade burgers, and sandwiches on the menu. There are also vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options on the menu. While the kids can enjoy thick shakes with their meal, adults may prefer to choose something from the extensive tap list. Customers say that Cascadia Grill has a great vibe and excellent customer service. You will find this eatery on 4th Avenue West, and it is open for lunch and dinner service daily.
8. La Petite Maison
Traditional French dishes are what you will find on the menu of this restaurant on Division Street NW. It is open from 5.30 pm to 9 pm from Tuesday to Saturday, and it is closed on Sundays and Mondays. Former customers have described it as one of the hidden gems of the West Coast and say the customer service and ambiance are excellent. There is the option to order a la carte or to enjoy the five-course special menu. In addition to high-quality food, customers praise the extensive wine list.
7. Mediterranean Breeze
The chef at the restaurant’s helm is Turkish chef Mehmet Sipahioglu, who creates traditional Turkish and Mediterranean dishes using locally sourced ingredients. Some examples of the dishes available include Turkish flatbreads that are stuffed and then baked in the oven or traditional wood-fired doner kebabs with marinated beef or lamb. There is a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere at Mediterranean Breeze thanks to the subtle lighting and background music. It has cozy seating, including long, shared tables running down the center of the restaurant.
6. Water Street Café
This restaurant is set in a historic building opposite Heritage Park and has views over Capitol Lake. It is a stylish wine bar that has a menu of modern American cuisine with creative twists. Although it is one of the pricier places to eat, you can save money by visiting during happy hour or dining at lunch as there is a cheaper lunch menu.
5. The Lemon Grass
If Asian cuisine is more your thing, then a good choice is The Lemon Grass. It is a casual restaurant in downtown Olympia that has a contemporary vibe in its dining room. The menu consists of Thai, Chinese, and Vietnamese food, and there is a spice wheel to help diners choose the right spice level for them. There is something for everyone at this restaurant, as there are meat, fish, and vegetarian options available.
4. Dockside Bistro
Open for both lunch and dinner, the Dockside Bistro is owned by Executive Chef Laurie Nguyen, who has designed a creative menu with dishes made using locally sourced ingredients. The dishes are a fusion of Northwest cuisine with influences from Europe and Southeast Asia. The bistro has a relaxed ambiance, and it is the ideal venue for a romantic meal.
3. Basilico Ristorante Italiano
If your favorite cuisine is Italian food, then the top restaurant to visit in Olympia is Basilico Ristorante Italiano, says The Culture Trip. The menu predominantly focuses on regional dishes from the Liguria and Emilia-Romagna regions of Italy, although there are also some dishes from other regions. It is a fine dining restaurant that uses the best ingredients available, and the pasta is handmade. The meat options include dishes such as braised bison short ribs in red wine or lamb ravioli in a tomato and herb sauce. There are also vegetarian and gluten-free options. Another feature of this restaurant is its impressive wine list.
2. Fish Tale Brewpub
Fish Tale Brewpub is the Fish Brewing Company’s flagship location, and it is the oldest brewpub serving signature beer in Olympia. Opened in 1993, the restaurant menu consists of classic pub fare, such as bangers and mash and fish and chips. The restaurant is also famous for serving 24 varieties of tap ciders and beers, including a unique, organic ale.
According to Time Out, the best place to eat in Olympia, WA, is Gardner’s restaurant. It is one of the city’s pricier options, so it is somewhere to visit if you are giving yourself a treat. Gardener’s is a family-owned restaurant that boasts exposed beams and rustic hardwood floors. Guests enjoy meals by candlelight, and the menu consists of top-quality meat, fish, and vegetarian dishes. No trip to this restaurant is complete without enjoying one of their signature cocktails, such as their St. Germaine Martini with pink grapefruit juice.