Anthony Bourdain in the Pacific Northwest: The Complete Guide

The Pacific Northwest is known for a great many things: grunge rock, rainy days, serial killers, and incredible food. While that last one might surprise you, it’s definitely true: Anthony Bourdain knew it and made sure to spend time in this part of the United States during his many global travels.

Anthony Bourdain visited the Pacific Northwest three times, to film three episodes covering both Portland (Oregon) and Seattle (Washington). He doesn’t venture much beyond the big cities of this region, though there are certainly some incredible restaurants elsewhere in both states.

Anthony Bourdain in the Pacific Northwest Hero

If you want to spend time in Seattle or Portland and eat at the restaurants visited by Anthony Bourdain in the Pacific Northwest, you’ve come to the right place. This guide covers the basics of his visits to the region and what he ate during each trip. It also includes helpful links to help you explore more deeply using other guides I’ve written about each city specifically.

Ready to see why there are so many incredible foods, chefs, and restaurants in the Pacific Northwest? Let Uncle Tony guide you!

In this post, I promote travel to a destination that is the traditional lands of the Cayuse, Umatilla and Walla Walla, Stl’pulmsh (Cowlitz), and Clackamas, Duwamish, Suquamish, sdukʷalbixʷ (Snoqualmie), Muckleshoot, Stillaguamish peoples, the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, among others. With respect, I make a formal land acknowledgment, extending my appreciation and respect to the past and present people of these lands. To learn more about the peoples who call these lands home, I invite you to explore Native Land.

This post was originally written in May 2023 and was updated most recently in May 2024.

Portland/Oregon

Anthony Bourdain’s visit to Portland, Oregon, was short and sweet: he filmed it as part of a “Pacific Northwest” episode of No Reservations and split the episode between the Rose City (Portland), and Seattle to the north.

During his (short) visit, he only visited a few places:

You can always check my guide to the places visited by Anthony Bourdain in Portland for more details about each one and what he ate there.

Seattle/Washington

Anthony Bourdain made several visits to Washington State, specifically to Seattle, where he filmed 2.5 episodes – the other half-episode was filmed in Portland, as I’ve already mentioned! In addition to that No Reservations episode, he also filmed an episode of The Layover as well as one of Parts Unknown.

As he made so many trips, there are a lot of restaurants to choose from if you want to follow Tony’s footsteps in the Emerald City. Here are five of the restaurants he visited that I consider essential spots to try if you’re short on time (or don’t want to eat 20 meals during whatever time you have!):

  • Canlis – Widely considered the best restaurant in Seattle, Canlis is the only place that requires a dinner jacket, and is well worth the investment for an incredible meal and stunning view.
  • Pike Place Market – While Bourdain only sampled the fares and wares of the vendors, there are a number of great restaurants in the market and it’s an essential stop for all first-time Seattle visitors.
  • Salumi – Run by Armandino Batali, father of the famous chef Mario Batali, this restaurant has moved since Tony’s visit. It’s still one of the best sandwiches in town. (Another good one can be found at Paseo, which is one of the places he recommends but doesn’t visit when filming The Layover.)
  • Taylor Shellfish Oyster Bar – Seattle and the Puget Sound are known for fantastic seafood and especially shellfish, so visiting any of Taylor Shellfish’s locations is a good choice. (Tony ate at the one in Pioneer Square.)
  • The Walrus & The Carpenter – For more seafood, most Seattleites will point you to this spot, which has been open and thriving for over a decade; as the name suggests, they do shellfish well.

(If you’re curious specifically about the places Tony ate during the “Pacific Northwest” episode, it was at Pike Place Market, Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, Piroshky Piroshky, and Salumi.)

There are lots more though, so you should check out my complete guide to the places visited by Anthony Bourdain in Seattle!

Have any questions about the places visited by Anthony Bourdain in the Pacific Northwest? Let me know in the comments below!

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Valerie is a travel writer currently based in Cleveland, but her favorite destinations are Alaska, London, and Jordan – only one of which Bourdain ever visited! You can find her writing on Lonely Planet, Forbes, and her travel blog, Valerie & Valise.

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