Best patio in Seattle has a new contender — and it’s right here in Wallingford.
Some months ago, I noticed Bowriders Grill pop up on Google maps right on the water, directly next to Westward. Eager for outdoor dining that might be easier to obtain without a reservation, my husband and I went on a scouting mission (aka mid-day beer break). We were delighted with what we found. The views and the vibes at Bowriders were out of this world. Sitting in Adirondacks, drinking cold beer out of recyclable aluminum cups, we watched seaplanes land and slipped into a dreamy summer haze as boats docked up for fuel or lunch to go.
Seattle Boat is a full service marina and boat dealer that has been around since 1984, but the grill came into the scene July of 2021 with Chef and Beer Tender, Matthew Lasof at the helm. Chef Matthew, a warm and charming Texas native, says Bowriders has an easy-going “no shirt, no shoes, no problem” sort of philosophy where people from all different walks of life can come to take in the lake. He says that people are always happy when they arrive and at Bowriders, their job is to keep them at that level of happiness or higher.
On any given night, you may encounter skater punks and yacht owners chatting as they enjoy a beverage around the fire pit or wait for something that is smoking on the grill. This natural mixing of a diverse customer base is a big part of what makes Bowriders special. Approachable by land or sea, I have met regulars who wander in from the neighborhood as well as boaters from some distance, stopping in for a meal or to grab their deck-side “float and go” order. When Bowriders opened last summer, their business was 70% off-shore meals sold to boaters and 30% from patrons approaching by land. This summer, the business looks to be flipping the other way thanks to the locals who have made this neighborhood gem their regular haunt. One such Wallyhood resident cautioned me not to tell too many people about this place!
Bowriders has 7 beers and 5 wines on tap, as well as a cooler stocked with bottles of wine and cans of beer. One crisp June evening, my husband and I waited out a rainstorm wrapped in a blanket and nestled under a heat lamp with a delicious bottle of champagne grabbed straight from the cooler. The Bowriders food menu has been evolving with the business. The idea is that it is fresh, simple, social, sharable and fun — and it is cooked in the small open grill kitchen just past the beer taps. Throughout the winter months, Bowriders operated with just 2 employees, but has grown to 6 for the season.
Monday and Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday: 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Thursday: 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Friday: 12:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Saturday: 12:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm
4th of July — Dockside Fireworks
If you don’t have plans for the 4th of July, consider this the nudge you needed! Bowriders is hosting a waterside viewing of the Space Needle Fireworks Display including endless food, beer and wine offerings. Tickets are $100 for adults and $40 for children and do require a reservation.
I can’t be there on the 4th, but I do look forward to clinking an aluminum cup with you at Bowriders sometime!