Best Pubs in Seattle

Bottoms Up! Seattle Pubs Pour Tasty Beers, Served with a Smile

Who doesn't love a pub? Steeped in tradition and devoted to camaraderie, these neighborhood hangouts charm everyone who passes through their doors. Plus, what kind of complaint could you have about a place that serves hefty pints, savory pub grub and a constant dose of hospitality?

We offer you a variety of favorite pubs in Seattle to choose from, giving you a feel for how welcoming such venues can be. Enjoy a glass of your favorite ale, a plate of fish 'n' chips (or other locally-sourced fare) and, if you're lucky, all the tall tales you can handle. Although some selected spots carry with them a bit of tradition and history, others show the newer, edgier side of Seattle's pub scene. Bottom line: All of our Seattle venues effortlessly deliver the feel-good experience you're craving.

While some pubs welcome dogs, others welcome kids; many bars in this town even dole out perks like live music performances, open mic nights, trivia evenings and access to board games and other bar-friendly activities. There are pubs with cozy, charming interiors (for days when it's gray) and pubs with patios and beer gardens (for afternoons when only an outdoor seat will do). We'll cheers to that!


If you're around Pike Place Market, you'll definitely want to ferret out Kells, whose location can seem nearly hidden. The authentic Irish pub offers traditional decor and distinct areas for dining and drinking. Draft beers include Harp and Carlsberg, and you'll also find ever-popular Guinness and a host of Seattle microbrews, plus single malt scotches. The menu boasts favorites like shepherd's pie, Irish stew, roast, and pasties, along with a few American standards. Live Irish music every night adds to the pub's lively nature, and there's even an outdoor patio where you can people-watch and relax. If you're looking to meet tourists, this is a friendly spot with a vibrant buzz.

Recommended for Pubs because: Kells brings the lively Irish spirit to the Pike Place Market zone, meaning tourists often flock to this downtown spot.

Corinne's expert tip: A daily happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m. means deals on food (like Belfast Bangers and chicken wings) as well as drinks.

Read more about Kells →

Enjoying a stately location in Queen Anne, this red-brick pub has earned a loyal following with its friendly service, good food and terrific selection of local and imported ales, cider and stouts. This spot is so homey that it's not uncommon to come in on consecutive nights and find the same folks sitting in the same spots and enjoying the same great beers. An added draw is the gourmet menu, which features spicy gumbo, steak and Guinness pot pie, fresh zesty fish tacos, the "Chicken California torta" as well as signature, Asian-inspired halibut cakes. (The ale house is 21 and over.)

Recommended for Pubs because: This red-brick pub in Queen Anne has earned a loyal following with its friendly service, good food and terrific selection of beers.

Corinne's expert tip: For those with food intolerances, there's a 12-item gluten free menu.

Read more about Hilltop Ale House →

Decorated with wrought iron fixtures and painted tangerine and aubergine hues, this sleek, intimate neighborhood pub perfectly mirrors the upstart attitude of its West Seattle environs. In the evenings, area professionals stop in to enjoy a microbrew or glass of wine at the refreshingly subdued bar. The menu offers a unique take on the concept of pub grub, winning patrons with dishes like Spanish-style fried calamari with lemon-garlic aioli, chicken jambalaya with andouille sausage as well as dishes like enchiladas. (And then, of course, there are Circa's beloved burgers.) Innovative egg dishes (served at weekend brunches) have become somewhat of a local legend.

Recommended for Pubs because: Circa Neighborhood Grill & Ale House brings a charming, intimate space to West Seattle.

Corinne's expert tip: Since this spot is small, be prepared to wait during peak hours.

Read more about Circa Neighborhood Grill & Ale House →


A quintessential German pub, this local institution has been operating in Ballard since 2000. The venue places a premium on the things that matter: excellent food, drink and cheer like you'd expect to find at an Old Country alehouse. Indeed, you won't find gaudy decor and flashing neon lights that hide shortcomings – simple wooden chairs and paneling are as flashy as it gets. What you will find, though, is a friendly crowd that enjoys Spaten, Hofbrauhau, and Moose Drool draughts alongside good conversation and an order of wiener schnitzel.

Recommended for Pubs because: A quintessential German pub, this local institution has been pleasing the people in Ballard since 2000.

Corinne's expert tip: Calling all Hokies! Peoples Pub hosts every Virginia Tech game as well as offering discounts to those who come to the games wearing their "Hokie" pride.

Read more about People's Pub (Die Volkskneipe) →

Photo courtesy of Photo by Corinne Whiting

When Northsiders are looking for a homey place to drink and chat with friends, this Phinney Ridge alehaus often springs to mind. (Though it's not directly by the stadium, the venue proves the perfect complement to a day in the stadium.) Appropriately named after the German word for "cheers," the place has the look and feel of an Old World beer hall, from its mural of a lovely Oktoberfest mistress to ornate beer steins. After wetting your whistle with a few liters of the house hefeweizen, check out the menu, which boasts everything from brats and kraut to enormous Bavarian pretzels with spicy mustard.

Recommended for Pubs because: Prost! proves a friendly German-style pub in Phinney Ridge; enjoy brews in ornate beer steins and authentic dishes like brats and kraut.

Corinne's expert tip: If beer's not your thing, check out house cocktails like the GurkenTini: Cucumber-infused vodka and dry Vermouth served with a refreshing cucumber garnish."

Read more about Prost! →

418 Public House
Photo courtesy of 418 Public House

In Phinneywood, a new hot zone north of Fremont and east of Ballard, 418 Public House proves a friendly, neighborhood spot. Draws include happy hour from 4 to 6:30, and delicious brunch options Saturday and Sunday at 10 a.m. Loyal patrons also appreciate the free shuffleboard and rotating calendar schedule featuring live music and special events. Mexican-accented menu items include burritos, tacos, tortas and tamales. Meat options range from Barbacoa de Res (beef braised in a red chile sauce of guajillo peppers, pulla peppers and banana leaf) to Tinga de Pollo (chipotle chicken with tomato and caramelized onion). The brunch menu showcases flavorful dishes like Caldo de Birria;mild red chile beef stew, served with tortillas, rice, avocado, cilantro, onion and lime. Que rico!

Recommended for Pubs because: In Phinneywood, a hot zone north of Fremont and east of Ballard, 418 Public House proves a friendly, neighborhood spot with tasty taco dishes.

Corinne's expert tip: Ask the venue about vegan and to-go options, too.

Read more about 418 Public House →

Cousin to The George & Dragon pub (in Fremont), The Market Arms brings the same cozy feel of a British pub to Ballard. The polished wood bar and cushioned stools serve as the perfect place from which to watch some soccer games, which are the only things that the televisions show. All the usual suspects are on tap - Guinness, Stella and Fullers ESB, as well as a full complement of scotch and whiskey. Happy Hours happen weekdays from 3 to 7 p.m., Sun.-Wed. 10 p.m. to midnight (the menu includes appetizers starting at $4, $4.75 20-oz. pints. $3.75 16-oz. pints, $2.75 16-oz. Rainier/PBRs and more).

Recommended for Pubs because: The Market Arms brings tasty British pub food, solid brews and warm folks to the neighborhood of Ballard.

Corinne's expert tip: Catch sports on the "telly" at this British hangout (think football of the American and English varieties)."

Read more about Market Arms →

The Burgundian
Photo courtesy of The Burgundian

Run by the beer-encyclopedic owners of Brouwer's Cafe in Fremont and Bottleworks in Wallingford, the Burgundian provides the same brew savvy selection and quality in the Tangletown neighborhood. The beer-and-breakfast- all-day pub is a casual brick-building space that serves stellar chicken and waffles to go along with its 22 beers on tap, a great selection of craft beer in cans from the cooler, and a voluminous collection of whiskey and tequila. While Brouwer's staked its claim on offering a vast array of Belgian beer, here the focus is squarely on American microbrews. Open at 10 a.m. for the waffle crowd, the Burgundian also offers lunch and dinner menus. As at Brouwer's, plans are in place for beer events and festivals in the new location, as well.

Recommended for Pubs because: The Burgundian brings an impressive brew-savvy selection (and tasty eats, too) to the Tangletown neighborhood.

Corinne's expert tip: Note to beer purists: The Burgundian has installed a direct draw tap system just like the one at Brouwer's to assure a quality pint untainted by off flavors from musty beer lines.

Read more about The Burgundian →

Hopvine Pub

cozy spot on Capitol Hill's 15th Street, Hopvine offers alluring trivia nights, surprisingly delicious food items and, of course, tasty brews. Dishes feature fresh and local ingredients; try the pizza (from the Greek to the Veggie 5-0), the from-scratch soups, the salads (like the roasted beet) and the sandwiches (like the turkey BLT, smoked gouda and artichoke or the pulled pork on rye). Happy hour deals happen daily from 5 to 7 p.m. and again from 11:30 till closing. Check online for special events ranging from open mic nights and cribbage tournaments to barrel evenings that showcase local brews.

Recommended for Pubs because: Hopvine Pub on Capitol Hill's 15th Street brings cozy, tasty eats and drinks to a friendly, jovial venue.

Corinne's expert tip: Check online for special events ranging from open mic nights and cribbage tournaments to barrel evenings that showcase local brews."

Read more about Hopvine Pub →

You're in the beery Pacific Northwest, where microbreweries sprout like mushrooms after a rainstorm. If you're interested in place at which to sample suds from a wide variety of those breweries, Brouwer's Cafe in Fremont is pure beervana. Obviously run by hop heads and beer geeks, Brouwer's staff is amazingly knowledgeable about lagers and ales. They had better be. This casual and understated pub offers no fewer than 64 rotating draft selections, along with more than 300 bottled brews and 60-something types of Scotch. And to help soak up some of that beer in your belly, the cafe features a Eurocentric menu of exceptional eats.

Recommended for Pubs because: Brouwer's Cafe in Fremont is pure beervana--pouring a vast variety of brews and serving delicious Belgian-inspired dishes.

Corinne's expert tip: This place really knows beer, and they are happy to share their brew smarts. Special tastings, festivals, and educational beer events are held here on a regular basis.

Read more about Brouwer's Cafe →


Meet Corinne Whiting

Corinne hails from the other Washington, where she caught the travel bug early on. Corinne studied abroad in Strasbourg, France (undergrad) and in Edinburgh, Scotland (graduate school). She's...  More About Corinne