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Originally published December 5, 2008 at 12:00 AM | Page modified December 5, 2008 at 12:05 PM

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Nancy Leson | Restaurants

Give the gift of eating out this Christmas

Nancy Leson rounds up a list of gift-certificate ideas from the restaurant scene.

Seattle Times Food writer

Restaurant gift certificates are always a welcome gift, but especially so this year, when so many dining-out budgets have been downsized. They're also a great way for you, as a gift-giver, to support your favorite restaurants. At a loss for where to send the folks on your list? Here's a holiday host of best bets — including hot-dog joints, hot new restaurants and houses of haute cuisine; places for beer buddies, bowling parties or parents toting the kids — plus a long list of local multiunit companies offering gift cards redeemable at three or more Seattle-area locations.

Eats and Entertainment

Central Cinema: 1411 21st Ave., Seattle, 206-686-MOVI; www.central-cinema.com

Dimitriou's Jazz Alley: 2033 Sixth Ave., #255, Seattle, 206-441-9729; www.jazzalley.com

Garage Billiards & Bowl: 1130 and 1134 Broadway, Seattle, 206-322-2296; www.garagebilliards.com

The Parlor Billiards & Spirits, Lincoln Square: 700 Bellevue Way N.E., Suite 300, Bellevue, 425-289-7000; www.parlorbilliards.com

Teatro ZinZanni: Box office: 222 Mercer St., Seattle, 206-802-0015; www.teatrozinzanni.org

The Triple Door: 216 Union St., Seattle, 206-838-4333; www.thetripledoor.net

Seafood Spectacular

Elliott's Oyster House: 1201 Alaskan Way, Seattle, 206-623-4340; www.elliottsoysterhouse.com

Flying Fish: 2234 First Ave., Seattle, 206-728-8595; www.flyingfishrestaurant.com

Ray's Boathouse & Café: 6049 Seaview Ave. N.W., Seattle, 206-789-3770 (Boathouse), 206-782-0094 (Cafe); www.rays.com

Seastar Restaurant & Raw Bar: Bellevue: 205 108th Ave. N.E., #100; 425-456-0010; opening in January at 2200 Westlake Ave. in Seattle

Steelhead Diner: 95 Pine St., Pike Place Market, Seattle, 206-625-0129; www.steelheaddiner.com

Cocktails and a great nosh

Black Bottle: 2600 First Ave., Seattle, 206-441-1500; www.blackbottleseattle.com

Brasa: 2107 Third Ave., Seattle, 206-728-4220; www.brasa.com

Licorous: 928 12th Ave., Seattle, 206-325-6947; www.licorous.com

Spur Gastropub: 113 Blanchard St., Seattle, 206-728-6706; www.spurseattle.com

Yes sir, that's my ... kid-friendly restaurant

Blue C Sushi: Fremont: 3411 Fremont Ave. N., Seattle, 206-633-3411; University Village: 4601 26th Ave. N. E., Seattle, 206-525-4601; Alderwood mall: 3000 184th St. S.W., Lynnwood, 425-329-3596; Westfield Southcenter Mall: 468 Southcenter Mall, Tukwila, 206-277-8744; Bellevue: opening in February at Bellevue Square; www.bluecsushi.com

Chinook's at Salmon Bay (and other Anthony's locations): Fisherman's Terminal: 1900 W. Nickerson St., Seattle, 206-283-4665; www.anthonys.com

5 Spot (and other Chow Foods locations): 1502 Queen Anne Ave. N., Seattle, 206-285-SPOT; www.chowfoods.com

Ivar's Salmon House (and other Ivar's locations): 401 N.E. Northlake Way, Seattle; 206-632-0767; www.ivars.net

Vios Café & Marketplace: Capitol Hill: 903 19th Ave. E., Seattle, 206-329-3236; Ravenna: 6504 20th Ave. N.E., 206-525-2701; www.vioscafe.com

Think globally, eat locally

China | Judy Fu's Snappy Dragon: 8917 Roosevelt Way N.E., Seattle, 206-528-5575; www.snappydragon.com

Germany | Prost!: 7311 Greenwood Ave. N., Seattle, 206-706-5430; www.prosttavern.net

India | Preet's: 8440 160th Ave. N.E., Redmond, 425-867-9400; www.preets.com

Ireland | Paddy Coyne's: Seattle: 1190 Thomas St., 206-405-1548; Tacoma: 815 Pacific Ave., 253-272-6963; www.paddycoynes.net

Italy | Spinasse: 1531 14th Ave., Seattle, 206-251-7673; www.spinasse.com

Japan | Flo Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar: 1150 106th Ave. N.E., Bellevue, 425-453-4005; www.florestaurant.com

Spain | Olivar: 806 E. Roy St., Seattle, 206-322-0409; www.olivarrestaurant.com

Thailand | Typhoon: Seattle: 1400 Western Ave., Seattle, 206-262-9797; Redmond: Bella Bottega Shopping Center, 8936 161st Ave. N.E., 425-558-7666; www.typhoonrestaurants.com

Vietnam | Tamarind Tree: 1036 S. Jackson St., #A, Seattle, 206-860-1404 (and coming soon to 1901 Second Ave., Seattle); www.tamarindtreerestaurant.com

Grape Expectations

Bin Vivant: The Woodmark Hotel, 1200 Carillon Point, Kirkland, 425-803-5595; www.binvivant.com

Local Vine: 2520 Second Ave., Seattle, 206-441-6000; www.thelocalvine.com

Olives Café & Wine Bar: 107 Fifth Ave. N., #103, Edmonds, 425-771-5757; www.olivesgourmet.com

Purple Café and Wine Bar: Seattle: 1225 Fourth Ave., 206-829-2280; Kirkland: 323 Park Place Center, 425-828-3772; Woodinville: 14459 Woodinville-Redmond Road N.E., 425-483-7129; www.thepurplecafe.com

Beer Bellies

Brouwer's Café: 400 N. 35th St., Seattle, 206-267-2437; www.brouwerscafe.com

Elliott Bay Brewing Co.: Elliott Bay Brewhouse & Pub: 255 S.W. 152nd St., Burien, 206-246-4211; Elliott Bay Brewery Pub: 4720 California Ave. S.W., Seattle, 206-932-8695; www.elliottbaybrewing.com

Elysian Fields (and other Elysian locations): 542 First Ave. S., Seattle, 206-382-4498; www.elysianbrewing.com

Tap House Grill: Seattle: 1506 Sixth Ave., 206-816-3314; Bellevue: 550 106th Ave. N.E., 425-467-1730; www.taphousegrill.com

A French Kiss

Boat Street Café: 3131 Western Ave., Seattle, 206-632-4602; www.boatstreetcafe.com

Café Presse: 1117 12th Ave., Seattle, 206-709-7674; www.cafepresseseattle.com

Le Pichet: 1933 First Ave., Seattle, 206-256-1499; www.lepichetseattle.com

Place Pigalle: 81 Pike St. (Pike Place Market), Seattle, 206-624-1756; www.placepigalle-seattle.com

Do-gooder dining places

FareStart Restaurant & Café (job training and placement program): Restaurant: 700 Virginia St., Seattle, 206-267-7601; Café: 2100 24th Ave. S., Seattle, 206-407-2195; www.farestart.org

St. Clouds (monthly homeless cooking project): 1131 34th Ave., Seattle, 206-726-1522; www.stclouds.com

Beef stake

Daniel's Broiler: Seattle: 809 Fairview Place N., 206-621-8262; Bellevue: Bellevue Place, 10500 N.E. 8th, 21st Floor, 425-462-4662; www.schwarzbros.com/daniels

JaK's Grill: Laurelhurst: 3701 N.E. 45th St., Seattle, 206-985-8545; West Seattle: 4548 California Ave. S.W., 206-937-7809; Issaquah: 14 Front St. N., 425-837-8834; www.jaksgrill.com

Red Mill Burgers: Phinney Ridge: 312 N. 67th, 206-783-6362; Interbay: 1613 W. Dravus, 206-284-6363; www.redmillburgers.com

Bargain Bites

Jones Barbeque: Columbia City: Suite 101, 3810 S. Ferdinand St., Seattle, 206-722-4414; Sodo: 2454 Occidental Ave. S., #3A, Seattle, 206-625-1339; www.jonesbarbeque.net

Hilltop Ale House (and other Ale House locations): 2129 Queen Anne Ave. N., Seattle, 206-285-3877; www.seattlealehouses.com

Matt's Gourmet Hot Dogs: Sodo: 6615 E. Marginal Way S., Seattle, 206-768-0418; Renton: 101 S.W. 41st Place, 425-656-5917 (and U District, Pier 52, Totem Lake) and other area locations; www.mattsfamouschilidogs.com

Pho Cyclo Café: Capitol Hill: 406 Broadway E.; 206-329-9256; Sodo: 2414 First Ave. S., 206-382-9256; www.phocyclocafe.com

Tutta Bella Neapolitan Pizzeria: Westlake: 2200 Westlake, Suite 112, Seattle, 206-624-4422; Columbia City: 4918 Rainier Ave. S., Seattle; 206-721-3501; Fremont: 4411 Stone Way N. Seattle, 206-633-3800; www.tuttabellapizza.com

Because you owe them big

Café Juanita: 9702 N.E. 120th Place, Kirkland, 425-823-1505; www.cafejuanita.com

Canlis: 2576 Aurora Ave. N., Seattle, 206-283-3313; www.canlis.com

Chiso Kappo: 701 N. 36th St., Suite 200, Seattle, 206-547-0937; www.chisoseattle.com/kappo

Lampreia: 2400 First Ave., Seattle, 206-443-3301; www.lampreiarestaurant.com

Rover's: 2808 E. Madison St., Seattle, 206-325-7442; www.rovers-seattle.com

Not so noisy-makers

Chez Shea: 94 Pike St., #34 (Pike Place Market), Seattle, 206-467-9990; www.chezshea.com

Nell's: 6804 E. Green Lake Way N., Seattle, 206-524-4044; www.nellsrestaurant.com

Szmania's: 3321 W. McGraw St., Seattle, 206-284-7305; www.szmanias.com

Trellis: 220 Kirkland Ave., in the Heathman Hotel, Kirkland, 425-284-5900; www.trellisrestaurant.net

Toscano: 1177 108th Ave. N.E., Bellevue, 425-460-6260; www.toscanocuisine.com

Hip young things

The Corson Building: 5609 Corson Ave. S., Seattle, 206-762-3330; www.thecorsonbuilding.com

How to Cook a Wolf: 2208 Queen Anne Ave. N., Seattle, 206-838-8090; www.howtocookawolf.com

Monsoon: Seattle: 615 19th Ave. E., 206-325-2111; Bellevue (opening in December): 10245 Main St.; www.monsoonseattle.com

Poppy: 622 Broadway E., Seattle, 206-324-1108; www.poppyseattle.com

Quinn's: 1001 E. Pike St., Seattle, 206-325-7711; www.quinnspubseattle.com

Spring Hill: 4437 California Ave. S.W., Seattle, 206-935-1075; www.springhillnorthwest.com

Txori: 2207 Second Ave., Seattle, 206-204-9771; www.txoribar.com

The more the merrier: multiunit restaurants

Anthony's Restaurants (various Anthony's restaurants, Bell Street Diner, Chinook's, Des Moines Oyster Bar & Grill, Harbor Lights): www.anthonys.com

Blue C Sushi (Boom Noodle): www.bluecsushi.com

BluWater Bistro (Belltown Bistro): www.bluwaterbistro.com

Chow Foods (Atlas, Coastal Kitchen, Endolyne Joe's, 5 Spot, Hi-Life, Mioposto): www.chowfoods.com

Consolidated Restaurants (DC's Grill, Elliott's Oyster House, Metropolitan Grill, Royal Argosy, Union Square Grill): www.consolidatedrestaurants.com

Duke's Chowderhouse: www.dukeschowderhouse.com

Elysian Brewing (Elysian Brewing Co., Elysian Fields, Tangletown): www.elysianbrewing.com

Ivar's (Ivar's Acres of Clams, Ivar's Salmon House, Ivar's Mukilteo Landing, Ivar's Seafood Bars): www.ivars.net

JaK's Grill: www.jaksgrill.com

Mackay Restaurant Group (El Gaucho, Sea Grill, Troiani, Waterfront): www.mackayrestaurants.com

Matt's Gourmet Hot Dogs: www.mattsfamouschilidogs.com

McCormick & Schmick's: www.mccormickandschmicks.com

Pagliacci Pizza: www.pagliacci.com

Purple Café & Wine Bar (Barrio): www.thepurplecafe.com

Restaurants Unlimited (Cutter's Bay House, Fondi, Maggie Bluffs, Palisade, Palomino, Scott's Bar & Grill, Stanfords, Stanley & Seafort's): www.r-u-i.com

Seattle Ale Houses group (Columbia City Ale House, Hilltop Ale House, 74th St. Ale House): www.seattlealehouses.com

Schwartz Brothers Restaurants (Chandler's Crabhouse, Daniel's Broiler, Revolution Bar & Grill, Spazzo): www.schwartzbros.com

Thai Ginger: www.thaiginger.com

Tom Douglas Restaurants (Dahlia Lounge, Dahlia Bakery, Etta's, Lola, Palace Kitchen, Serious Pie): www.tomdouglasrestaurants.com

Tutta Bella Neapolitan Pizzeria: www.tuttabellapizza.com

Via Tribunali: www.viatribunali.com

Nancy Leson: 206-464-8838 or nleson@seattletimes.com

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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