Who says you need to drive all the way to Seattle or Tacoma to find awesome restaurants? Whether you’re a daily commuter to the Emerald City or you fell in love with Lake Washington and never looked back, you’ve surely eaten in at least one of the amazing restaurants Kirkland has to offer.
But, in case you’re just visiting Kirkland for the weekend, or if you’re considering making this Seattle suburb your new home, we’ve compiled a list of the best restaurants in Kirkland to visit while you’re there. If you’re a long-time Kirkland resident, this list may entice you to try out a restaurant you’ve never visited before!
Kirkland restaurants represent an international and domestic slate of cuisines, and if you’re looking for the best restaurants in the area, use this list as your guide. When it comes to places to eat, nothing on this list will disappoint.
Check out my list of the best restaurants Kirkland has to offer down below!
Best Restaurants in Kirkland
- Cafe Juanita
- Isarn Thai Soul Kitchen
- Deru Market
- Bottle & Bull
- Plaza Garcia
- Acropolis Pizza & Pasta
- I Luv Teriyaki
- Lynn’s Bistro
- Mediterranean Kitchen
- Le Grand Bistro Americain
- Oto Sushi
- Beachhouse Bar & Grill
- Anthony’s HomePort
- Cactus Kirkland
9702 NE 120th Pl, Kirkland, WA 98034
Cafe Juanita is in a wooded grove on NE 120th Pl in South Juanita (use buses 230, 231, or 255). The cafe is not very far from Juanita Beach Park and Juanita Bay Park, off Juanita Bay. You’ll enjoy soothing wooded views through the windows of this moody, upscale, mid-century home-turned-restaurant.
Cafe Juanita has been serving Northern Italian dishes since 2000. Their menu changes often to reflect changes in produce, meat, and fish availability, so there’s always something fresh to try during your next visit.
Their tasting menus (which are being served as the restaurant transitions back to in-person dining) feature omnivorous, pescatarian, vegetarian, and vegan menu options.
My personal favorite is the Risotto Verde with escargot and garlic sauce. But, since their menu changes frequently, you’ll have to stop by and try it before another tasty dish takes its place!
11836 98th Ave NE, Kirkland, WA 98034
You can find Pizziolo in South Juanita off 98th Ave. NE (use buses 230, 231, or 255). This Italian restaurant is not very far from Juanita Beach Park and Juanita Bay Park, off Juanita Bay.
Pizzaiolo is an Italian restaurant located that specializes in authentic Neapolitan wood-fired pizza. They craft their pizza sauce from San Marzano tomatoes imported directly from Italy. If you’re looking for a real-deal Italian pizza experience, look no further than Pizzaiolo.
While their slate of pizzas is sure to please, they also offer a variety of other Italian dishes including calzones, fettuccine alfredo, and tiramisu. My favorite is the Calabrese, and I can’t get enough of the pie’s spicy sausage. Be sure to add a Caprese Salad to your meal for an extra injection of fresh mozzarella.
Isarn Thai Soul Kitchen
170 Lake St S, Kirkland, WA 98033
Thai Soul Kitchen is a Moss Bay restaurant on the corner of S. Lake St. and 2nd Ave. S. (on the 250 bus route). It is within view of Lake Washington. It is also near the Marina Park Pavilion and Heritage Park. Its front doors open wide enough so that indoor and outdoor dining merge into one.
Thai Soul is far from your average Thai restaurant. Serving up lesser-known Thai fare, Thai-inspired salads, killer appetizers, and drool-worthy vegan dishes, there’s something for every palate.
If you’re hesitant to abandon your usual Thai dish, we recommend checking out the Rice and Noodle menu. Pad See Eiw, a dish made with egg noodles, sauteed vegetables, and soy sauce, is a beginner-friendly dish that will render you a head-over-heels Thai food fan.
Take it from a regular: You don’t want to sleep on the vegan menu, even if you’re an omnivore. The Everything Papaya salad will rock your world.
723 9th Ave, Kirkland, WA 98033
Deru Market is located on 9th Ave in Norkirk (use bus 245 or 255). Peter Kirk Park is between the restaurant and Lake Washington’s Moss Bay. You can dine indoors or out at this charming and hip restaurant.
Deru Market serves an inspired variety of baked goods, sandwiches, pizza, and fries. They even have a brunch menu with options that eclipse the average midday slate (pizza for brunch is just genius), and their coffee menu is no slouch.
Their list of cakes changes daily, but we recommend trying a slice of some of the best cakes in Kirkland. Luckily, you can place an order for a full cake for a special occasion.
I’d be remiss not to mention the Beet Lemon Muddle, the best use of beets in Kirkland (or maybe the world).
Bottle & Bull
105 Lake St, Kirkland, WA 98033
Bottle & Bull is on Lake St. in Moss Bay (use bus 239 or 250). This restaurant is right next to the Kirkland City Dock at Marina Park on Lake Washington. Unfortunately, it doesn’t feature a bay view, but the food and cocktails more than make up for it.
Bottle & Bull is a craft cocktail bar with a food menu that will make you say, “Whoa.” Far from your average bar fare, their small plates and house-made pasta are particularly awe-inspiring. Trust me when I say that, after showing up for a happy hour, one look at the menu will make you want to stay for dinner.
Featuring sours with egg whites, creative twists on classic drinks (the Moroccan Margarita is a ten out of ten), and a whiskey list to die for, Bottle & Bull sacrifices neither variety nor quality.
Finish off the night with a dessert cocktail nightcap like a Spanish Coffee, and make plans to come back for more the next day.
12108 Juanita Dr NE, Kirkland, WA 98034
You’ll find Plaza Garcia is on Juanita Dr. NE in Juanita, within sight of Juanita Woodlands Park. It’s also not too far from the Denny Creek Upper Trailhead, but there’s no public transportation access.
Plaza Garcia is a Mexican restaurant with a long menu full of delicious dishes. Opened 20 years ago by Rocio Salcedo, Plaza Garcia offers a huge variety of dishes, including salads, appetizers, fajitas, burritos, and more.
The menu is huge, and once you’ve visited Plaza Garcia once, you’ll make a point to come back and try one of everything. Their menu offers both a kids menu and two family-size street taco options; this is a restaurant made to serve a family.
If you’re just visiting Kirkland and have to pick one dish to leave a lasting impression, try my regular order: a spicy mango margarita, Mexican pizza, and The Molcajete (which serves more than enough for two).
11451 98th Ave NE, Kirkland, WA 98033
Kathakali is on 98th Ave. NE in Juanita (use bus 230, 231, or 255). You could see Juanita Bay from the restaurant if it wasn’t for the trees in Juanita Bay Park.
Kathakali serves up Indian dishes with an urban twist, and their menu is exquisite from starters to desserts. With a sizable offering of vegetarian dishes, seafood, dosas, and rice, Kathakali’s menu will please every palate.
If you’re a spicy food devotee, this menu will excite and challenge you. For a meal that prioritizes those titillating Indian spices, try the Spicy Lamb Koftas for an appetizer with an order of the Kerala Meen Curry. Your taste buds may literally explode.
If you’re a lover of Indian cuisine for its integration of sweet flavors, there’s something here for you, too. Try the Kale Onion Cashew Pakoda appetizer with the Kerala Appam and the Beets Halwa for dessert.
12539 116th Ave NE, Kirkland, WA 98034
You can find Izumi on 116h Ave. NE in the Totem Lake area of Kirkland (use bus 255). It’s on the west side of I-405, while Totem Lake is on the east.
Izumi specializes in Japanese cuisine, but you’ll find more than sushi on this menu. They offer a variety of Japanese-inspired main dishes, a wide noodle selection, combination platters, and a wow-worthy sake selection.
I recently tried the Curry Udon, and I can’t recommend any noodle dish more highly. Paired with the Tofu Suimono soup and the Tekka Maki roll, I left Izumi with a full belly and a calendar reminder for my next visit.
If you’re a dessert person, you have to try the Coffee Jello. It may sound bizarre, but this homemade delicacy will send you reeling. Paired with a glass of plum wine, your dinner mates will have to drag you out kicking and screaming.
Acropolis Pizza & Pasta
500 Central Way, Kirkland, WA 98033
Acropolis Pizza & Pasta is on Central Way in the Moss Bay area. You can find it slightly northeast of Peter Kirk Park (use bus 245, 255, 239, or 250).
Acropolis Pizza & Pasta has been a Kirkland staple since 1973. Serving pizza, grinders, gyros, Italian delicacies, and salads, you’ll want to try one of everything on the menu at this long-standing Kirkland institution.
Combining American favorites with Italian staples is one of Acropolis’s great strengths. I tried the BBQ Chicken & Spaghetti on a whim with doubts about such an odd combination, but it’s now one of my regular orders.
Of course, you can’t go wrong with the pizzas, and my family goes bananas for the Spartan 300 pie. When I’m dining alone or recommending a pizza to a friend, my number one choice is the Kalpaki, because you just can’t go wrong with kalamata olives and feta on a pizza.
I Love Teriyaki
12077 124th Ave NE, Kirkland, WA 98034
If you’re looking for superior Chinese food, head to 124th Ave. NE in the Totem Lake area (use bus 225 or 239). I Love Teriyaki is just south of Totem Lake on the east side of I-405.
A staple in the Kirkland community, I Love Teriyaki is so much more than a Chinese restaurant. They’re known for putting modern twists on classic Chinese dishes and for using incredibly high-quality ingredients.
Their Orange Chicken is a testament to that philosophy. Orange Chicken is one of my favorite things to order (I always sub fried rice, because why not?), and the sweet tang of the orange reminds me of my college days (I ate a lot of orange chicken during grad school). Try it for yourself!
212 Central Way, Kirkland, WA 98033
Moss Bay is also the home of Lynn’s Bistro. You can find it on Central Way between Peter Kirk Park and the Marina Park Pavilion (use bus 239 or 250).
Lynn’s Bistro serves a small, worldly menu that is guaranteed to please. I had never even heard of Chicken Piccata the first time I went to Lynn’s, but now I treat myself to it at least once per month.
While it can be hard to trust a dish that’s different every day, you can’t go wrong with their chef’s daily creations, like the quiche, the market fish, and their daily vegetarian dish.
11412 NE 124th St, Kirkland, WA 98034
Mediterranean Kitchen is another great restaurant in the Totem Lake area (use bus 255). You can find it on NE 124th St. on the west side of I-405 (Totem Lake is on the east side).
Mediterranean Kitchen brings the best of Mediterranean cuisine to the Emerald City suburb of Kirkland. Shawarma, Shish Tawook, and Falafel have never tasted so good.
Their vegetarian dishes don’t compromise on flavor, and I recommend venturing into the vegetarian dishes even if you’re a meat-eater. The Fool Moudamas is one of the tastiest items on the menu, and the grape leaves should be a mandatory shared appetizer.
Le Grand Bistro American
2220 Carillon Point, Kirkland, WA 98033
Le Grand Bistro Americain is on Yarrow Bay in Central Houghton (take bus 250). Enjoy peaceful views of the bay and the Yarrow Bay Marina from the restaurant’s large dining room windows or the outdoor patio. You can also stroll from the restaurant up to Carillon Point Beach Park.
A swanky French-inspired culinary experience, Le Grand Bistro Americain doesn’t skimp on luxury. During the charcuterie revolution, Americans added a variety of accouterments to their boards, but Le Grand Bistro Americain kicks it old-school.
Paired with a small plate and a selection from their Raw Bar, a charcuterie is only the beginning of your culinary journey at this outstanding Kirkland restaurant.
11628 97th Ln NE, Kirkland, WA 98034
You can find Oto Sushi to the east of Juanita Beach Park on 98th E. Ave. in South Juanita (use bus 230, 231, or 255). You won’t be able to see Juanita Bay from the restaurant, but it’s close enough to walk there after your meal.
One of the best sushi restaurants in Kirkland, Oto’s huge menu of traditional Japanese rolls and kitchen dishes will change your sushi-eating experience forever. If you’re new to raw fish and don’t know where to start, grab a friend and split an Omakase, a huge dish featuring the best of the best cuts of fish for nigiri or sashimi (which is much different than sushi).
While the sushi is enticing, don’t skip out on their traditional Japanese noodle dishes!
Beachhouse Bar & Grill
6023 Lake Washington Blvd NE, Kirkland, WA 98033
Beachhouse Bar & Grill is another amazing waterfront restaurant on Lake Washington’s Yarrow Bay (take bus 250). This Central Houghton restaurant is on Lake Washington Blvd NE and features beautiful views of the bay and Houghton Beach Park, which is a great place for a stroll after your meal.
Beachhouse Bar & Grill is a Kirkland fixture. Their seafood-inspired fare is second-to-none and paired with anything from their cocktail menu (the Huckleberry Limeade is my go-to happy hour libation), your meal will have you coming back for a second visit.
Both the Salmon BLT and the Seafood Skewers are among my recommendations for first-time visitors, but you can’t go wrong with a single menu item at Beachhouse.
135 Lake St S, Kirkland, WA 98033
Anthony’s HomePort has the best water views, indoors and out, of any Moss Bay restaurant. It is on Lake St S. overlooking the Kirkland Sailing Club and School’s marina. It’s also just steps away from the Marina Park Pavilion (use bus 250).
Anthony’s HomePort is a testament to Anthony’s Restaurants’ commitment to serving high-quality meals with ingredients from local purveyors. Menus vary daily based on the catch of the day and the chef’s specials, so keep coming back for a unique dining experience each time.
If you’re feeling fancy, combine one of their landlubber dishes with a seafaring side for a surf-and-turn to remember. The Roasted Garlic Prawns are my go-to!
121 Park Ln, Kirkland, WA 98033
You can find Cactus Kirkland on Park Ln. between Peter Kirk Park and the Marina Park Pavilion in Moss Bay (take bus 250 or 239). It doesn’t have a view of Lake Washington, but it does have outdoor seating if you want to soak up some rays.
Cactus Kitchen specializes in southwestern cuisine, and they’ve been serving hungry customers for over 30 years. Their menu is huge, and if you ordered one of everything, you’d need a table for 50.
To help you narrow down your choice, I recommend the Guacamole Carlito’s Way, the Grilled Skirt Steak Salad, or the Yucatan Salmon Bowl.
If you’re trying to decide where to eat in Kirkland, look no further than this comprehensive list. I’m a huge foodie, and compiling this guide to the best restaurants in Kirkland was a labor of love (for both food and my hometown).
I’m always looking for new dishes and restaurants in Kirkland. If I passed over an obvious choice, leave a comment, and I’ll check it out!
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