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An All-Star Evening at Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar, Seattle, WA

Fresh sushi and sashimi at Seastar Restaurant, Seattle

Great seafood in a perfect location–that’s Seattle’s Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar.

Fresh seafood, views of the Space Needle, snowcapped Olympic Mountains and Elliot Bay. That is how our evening started at the Seattle Pan Pacific Hotel at the Denny Suite. We were greeted by General Manager Sam Johnson who recently took on this new job and is a rising star who has worked in the hospitality business for many years for a number of elite local establishments. He was beaming with pride over Pan Pacific’s recent win of the prestigious four-star award by Forbes Travel Guide.

Pan Pacific is located in the South Lake Union area, a perfect location within walking distance of the Space Needle, Convention Center and the unique shops in the neighborhood. Pan Pacific is a great destination for the business traveler with upscale boutique hotel amenities, including meeting rooms and suites with panoramic city views. For those who want first class treatment elsewhere, Pan Pacific Hotels has 20 luxury hotels and resorts across Asia and Oceania.

outdoor terrace with Space Needle View Pan Pacific Hotel

Both hotel and restaurant guests at Pan Pacific are rewarded with stunning city views, including Seattle’s iconic Space Needle.

Freshest Seafood

This evening, as guests of Pan Pacific, we enjoyed local wines during their extended happy hour. The real highlight, however, was Chef Howie’s finest from the Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar, located on the main floor.

How good is this seafood? My brother Steven, a self-proclaimed food aficionado, travels worldwide researching the finest restaurants. Last year, we visited the Seastar together and he proclaimed, “These are the best oysters I have ever had.”

sushi Seastar Restaurant

Chef Howie uses only the freshest seafood for his sushi.

We enjoyed the savoy taste of center cut tuna ahi poke served with soy and taro chips. Among the delightful assorted sushi rolls, the California was my favorite. The local Dungeness Crab Cakes in a gingery sweet-n-sour beurre blanc sauce was tasty and light.

And the oysters—oh, the oysters! An assortment of oysters from around the world was a special treat. I wished my brother was there to compare this to the Northwest oysters we had enjoyed together. I loved them all!

Chef John Howie ascent up the ladder to stardom began many years ago. He started first as a teen busing tables and then worked as chef at many of Greater Seattle’s restaurants. John hit a homerun when he landed the chef job at the famous Palisades Restaurant in Seattle. Ten years later, he opened Seastar, his first restaurant.

Oysters with Pomegranate citrus relish, Seastar Restaurant

A selection of fresh oysters from around the world was the highlight of our Seastar dining experience.

Chef Howie enjoys sharing his amazing food and giving back. Every Thanksgiving, he invites needy families to Seastar for Thanksgiving dinner. During a recent big storm in Seattle, he fed hard-working utility crews working around the clock to restore power to area residents. Pan Pacific also gives some of the proceeds from its summer wine happy hour to One Day’s Wages to help end global poverty.

All in all, dining at Pan Pacific’s Seastar Restaurant is both tasty and inspiring and an experience I’ll want to savor again and again. – by Michael Fagin, RFT Contributor 

Michael Fagin

Michael Fagin


Photos courtesy of Pan Pacific Hotel

Interested in staying at the Seattle Pan Pacific Hotel? Check out Sue Frause’s review of this elegant hotel.

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Michael Fagin

Michael Fagin is a freelance travel writer who has traveled over the last 10 years across Canada and visited all the major Canadian wine regions. Mike is currently touring the Pacific Northwest enjoying the wine country, dining, and hiking. While he is not writing, Mike is a meteorologist for West Coast Weather, LLC, forecasting weather for the West Coast of the U.S. as well internationally.

2 thoughts on “An All-Star Evening at Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar, Seattle, WA

  1. Jan Fleming

    My husband and I have paired the Pan Pacific and Seastar several times this year.
    We look forward to our trips to the city especially when we can enjoy the freshest
    seafood with great Northwest wine and finish the evening in a stunning room with
    the glow of the Spaceneedle as our nightlight!

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