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Our first Neighborhood Snackdown semi-final match pits the International District (which bested Rainier Valley) against Ballard (fresh off its victory over Alki.) Which is the

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Snackdown! International District vs. Ballard

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Our first Neighborhood Snackdown semi-final match pits the International District (which bested Rainier Valley) against Ballard (fresh off its victory over Alki.) Which is the better neighborhood for eating?

Erika Hobart says International District.

Why is it that a major metropolis like Seattle goes to bed so damn early? Most of its restaurants--and, sadly, even bars--close when the revelry should just be getting started. The exception to that rule, of course, is the International District.

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The neighborhood bustles with as much action at 3 a.m. as it does during dim sum. The options for authentic Asian cuisine almost around the clock, including Cambodian, Chinese, and Japanese, are endless.

Step into Ga Ga Loc, Jade Garden, and Honey Court to experience an eclectic crowd of Asian immigrants, college students, and groups of clubgoers trying to sober up over piles of chow mein. What all of them have in common, of course, is that they are grateful to have a neighborhood in the city that offers not just one, but several, awesome alternatives to loitering in a Dick's parking lot.

Keegan Hamilton likes Ballard.

In this Snackdown battle royale, Ballard is like Andre the Giant, Bruce Lee, and Mike Tyson all rolled into one. (Unlike Tyson, however, when it comes to munching on ears, Ballard residents prefer the pork variety.)

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Seriously though, Ballard is a culinary juggernaut. You want gourmet? We got the likes of Staple and Fancy, Walrus and Carpenter, and Golden Beetle. If it's cheap eats you're after, good luck choosing between the best sandwiches in the city (Paseo) the best barbecue (Smokin' Pete's) and the best tacos (the El Camión on 15th Ave.)

Indeed, the 'hood has everything your stomach desires and more, from sushi (the excellent Moshi Moshi) to Mexican (Señor Moose and Carta de Oaxaca), to Greek (Plaka Estiatorio) to French (Bastille) to tapas (Ocho) to pizza (Snoose Junction and Delancey, to name just a couple), to....the list goes on and on. The fight is so unfair that Ballard should be forced to compete with the aforementioned restaurants tied behind its back. And even then it would probably still win.

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