Spring and summer in Seattle are seasons of appetite--for food, for fun, for experience. The sun comes out with regularity, the air warms up, and the sky is blue. People wear less clothing and smile more (I think there is a very direct correlation between the two). Sociability and hunger compel you to get outside and enjoy all of it--not just the brighter weather, but the energy of the city and the inherent promise of living in one. That's when eating outdoors seems essential, almost like a civic duty. Whether that means picking up a to-go lunch from a deli, getting a picnic dinner from a cafe, eating outdoors at the sidewalk tables neatly cordoned off outside restaurants, buying food direct from markets, patronizing one of the hot dog stands or taco trucks that dot the city, or sitting on one of the many decks and patios, al fresco dining makes Seattle feel expansive, a little more urban, and, hell, sexier.


It doesn't get much more real than this: buying yummy fruits, veggies, fish, and meat from the farmers and fishermen themselves. Not only does it make you save money (no middleman!) and feel good (supporting family farms!), but the markets are a great place to cruise for wholesome types who very well might cook you a morning-after breakfast with organic eggs and baby pea shoots. Here's where to look: The Neighborhood Farmers' Market Alliance hosts markets in the broadest range of neighborhoods, and the focus is really on farm products, although there are usually some yummy baked goods on hand, too.

Look for the Alliance's brand-new Capitol Hill farmers' market (Broadway Ave E and E Thomas St on Sundays from 11 am-3 pm starting May 15); or check out veterans like Columbia City (Rainier Ave S and S Edmunds St, Wednesdays starting May 11); Lake City (NE 127th St and 30th Ave NE, Thursdays 3 pm-7 pm starting May 19); Magnolia (2550 34th Ave W, Saturdays 10 am-2 pm starting June 4); West Seattle (California Ave SW and S Alaska St, Sundays 10 am-2 pm starting May 8) and the granddaddy of them all, the University District farmers' market (NE 50th St and University Way NE, Saturdays 9 am-2 pm starting May 7).

Pike Place Market might be the touristic heart of the city, but as a farmers' market, you need to treat it with a grain of salt. The high stalls have pretty produce, but if you want to buy your turnips from the gal who grew them, walk north along the market until the stalls aren't so much stalls as tables. Wednesdays are the best days at Pike Place, when organic farmers gather on the street in front of the market.

In Ballard, the farmers' market is a mixed market with farm-fresh produce, but also hot food, crafts, and scented geraniums (Sundays 10 am-4 pm on Ballard Ave between 20th and 22nd Aves NW). Its sister market, the Fremont Market, is more of a flea market, but the food vendors there are rockin'. (Sundays 10 am-5 pm at N 34th St between Phinney Way and Evanston St). SARA DICKERMAN


Agua Verde
U-District, 1303 NE Boat St, 545-8570
A rare waterfront restaurant without waterfront prices, Aqua Verde is a cozy springtime destination. The taco selection is creative and the tacos are comfortably filling. Order a couple--choices range from sweet potato to fried fish. And the fresh-made margaritas are the perfect happy-hour fix. Because of its prime location, Agua Verde can get packed fast, but with a back patio and a kitchen full of good fixings, the wait is worth it. JENNIFER MAERZ

Bill's Off Broadway
Capitol Hill, 725 E Pine St, 323-7200
The seating along the side of Bill's is a fenced-in strip of tables with umbrellas. It's a perfect vantage to watch the foot traffic on Pine Street and enjoy a beer and one of the cheesy pizzas. Did I mention the cheap drink specials? NATE LIPPENS

BluWater Bistro
Eastlake, 1001 Fairview Ave N, 447-0769
There is much to gaze upon at the South Lake Union Blu Water Bistro. First, there's the blue water--actually, it's not so much blue as greenish/brown, but it's glimmering nonetheless. Then there's the clientele, which tends to consist of equally glimmering souls, many of whom travel from such unexotic locales as Bellevue and Redmond in hope of romantic entanglement. The food can be pigeonholed as "upscale fare" (translation: overpriced, but good), but then food is sort of an afterthought. Sex, and the possibility of attaining it, is what BluWater's menu really offers. BRADLEY STEINBACHER

Cafe Paloma
Downtown, 93 Yesler Way, 405-1920
For an exquisite outdoor-eating experience in an urban epicenter, head to Pioneer Square for an outside table at Chef Sedat Uysal's Mediterranean cafe. From Turkish coffee and baklava to sirah and mücver (traditional Turkish pancakes made from Chef Uysal's blue-ribbon zucchinis), Cafe Paloma offers ace pairings of small delights. But eventually you'll want to submit yourself to the full glories of the meze, a parade of specialty appetizers--smoked salmon, stuffed black mussels, lamb kebap, grilled baby eggplants--that's ever-evolving, and always impressive. DAVID SCHMADER

Capitol Club
Capitol Hill, 414 E Pine St, 325-2149
Capitol Club has a small but impressive menu with some delectable specials, but it's their delicious and generously proportioned Kobe beef burgers that are the draw. There is a sliver of nicely secluded terrace adjoining the upstairs bar with a bird's eye view that allows some prime people watching, especially on weekend nights when the foot traffic starts to stumble and stagger. NATE LIPPENS

Downtown, 807 First Ave, 447-7704
There's no better deal when it comes to outdoor downtown dining: During happy hour at Contour, small plates of delicious, upscale bar food are just $1.95. The menu includes buffalo hot wings, spanakopita, battered zucchini fries, rosemary-battered chicken strips, and even pan-fried calamari rings, all for under two bucks from 4 to 8 pm. Grab a beer and a menu, and get comfortable on the sidewalk patio--you'll want to stay and try everything. AMY JENNIGES

El Camino
Fremont, 607 N 35th St, 632-7303
Fremont's scrumpdeliumptios modern-Mexican kitchen has a big patio out back with heaters and a roll-down tent-top for comfortable dining even in dreary weather. The adjoining bar gets packed with a thirtysomething singles scene on the weekends, but the patio, with its cushioned, slouching chairs, is more laid-back. Settle in and try the mountain of fried and salted plantain chips served with salsa fresca and guacamole--my new favorite indulgence. Entreés, both standard (enchiladas in mole poblano) and inventive (almond-crusted halibut with salsa), are accompanied by interesting veggies (mashed sweet potatoes, grilled squash). El Camino's cocktails are fine-tuned and remarkable, too, and the net effect of the food, booze, and atmosphere inspires gratuitous lazing. AMY KATE HORN

Fado Irish Pub
Downtown, 801 First Ave, 264-2700
With the recent addition of its big wrought-iron fence, Fado's outdoor seating isn't messing around. It's not going anywhere and neither are you after some very superb bar fare and a couple of beers. NATE LIPPENS

Flying Fish
Downtown, 2234 First Ave, 728-8595
Sip a chard and dine on expertly prepared Asian-inspired seafood on Flying Fish's pleasant deck (open in good weather only) and you'll see why Seattle has treasured this gem for 10 years. Not in the mood for seafood? FF does a mean New York steak at night and serves natural (i.e., from cows never fed animal products) Kobe beef burgers covered in caramelized onions and cheddar at lunch. AMY KATE HORN

Fremont, 404 N 36th St, 925-9979
It's pretty rare to find a Thai joint that offers urban outdoor seating. Most of them prefer, I suppose, to provide a Zen-like dining-room atmosphere, something that's hard to achieve on the sidewalk--despite the fact that Thailand's city streets are bustling with food vendors. Luckily, Fremont's Kaosamai has been smart enough to tap into the outdoor market (twice!) bringing their curries, noodle dishes, and stir-fry specialties--be sure to try the spring rolls, too--to a deck at their main location, and via a new mobile truck parked in South Lake Union. AMY JENNIGES

Le Pichet
Belltown, 1933 First Ave, 256-1499
There are many reasons why it's funny that Le Pichet's whole vibe is modeled on Parisian peasant cafes, and the fact that their eggs cost $12 is the least of them. From the food to the flooring, every surface of the Peesh is so elegant and pleasing that you wind up wanting to stay all day. It's not cheap, but it is so, so worth it--especially when the sun is out and the tables along First Avenue allow you to squint and believe, if only for one second, that you're in France, and young, and beautiful, and RICH! SEAN NELSON

Capitol Hill, 707 E Pine St; 325-1220
The back patio at Linda's may not have a view, other than a smidgen of sky above the walled-in space, but there are always plenty of people to look at. Get there early and enjoy a happy-hour cocktail and then one of their sturdily dependable sandwiches, or better yet, a bacon cheeseburger. Half of the patio is covered and there are plenty of heat lamps to warm you as the night wears on, as it inevitably will. NATE LIPPENS

Belltown, 2331 Second Ave, 441-9842
Marjorie's outdoor patio area is like a secret garden, peekable from the street but hidden enough to feel all your own. This layout offers more than just intimacy--with the often-noisy Second Avenue just outside, the tucked-away feeling the small space offers is a perfect antidote. The menu steals from around the globe, and the bar, while by no means large, is one of the friendlier spots you'll find in the city. BRADLEY STEINBACHER

Marco's Supperclub
Belltown, 2510 First Ave 441-7801
The setup at Marco's offers the best of both worlds in outdoor eating. There is sidewalk seating in front and a covered patio in back and you can cater your choice to how sociable you are feeling. The sidewalk tables are ever so slightly elevated and framed by vines and foliage, while the back is cozy and cool. Seasonal specials and international influences show up on Marco's varied menu, along with summer salads, signature fried sage leaves, and amazing Jamaican jerk chicken--a moist, roasted free-range bird that inspires a complex, slow burn in your mouth, served with sweet-potato purée and sautéed bitter greens. NATE LIPPENS

Ballard, 2221 NW Market St, 297-2855
This hip Ballard Tex-Mex restaurant and bar stretched its seating space onto the sidewalk just last summer, so you can soak up Market Street's atmosphere while downing platters of nachos, enchiladas, and tacos, bowls of tortilla soup or chili, and offbeat items like Mexican-style spring rolls (don't forget the mojitos and margaritas!). Bonus: During happy hour, from 4 to 6 pm and again after 10, smaller (but still substantial) plates of select menu items are just four bucks. AMY JENNIGES

Pacific Inn
Fremont, 3501 Stone Way N, 547-2967
Pacific Inn's deck offers no real view to speak of: crane your neck and you can see Lake Union, but mostly your peepers will gaze upon the blandness that is good ol' Stone Way. Thankfully, this lack of eye candy doesn't matter in the least, since the bar fare at Pacific Inn--including, as we've mentioned many times, the city's best fish 'n' chips--more than makes up for it. For those seeking a casual lunch under the sun, it's a hard place to beat, even if the service can be a tad surly. BRADLEY STEINBACHER

Pasta & Co.
U-District, University Village, 523-8594
If you're ever forced to endure U-Village while your significant other shops for high-priced emollients or fake antique furniture, you could do far worse (after you've checked your e-mail at the Apple Store, of course) than to hole up here with some gorgeous handmade tortellini in a sauce that would make an Italian mother die from envy. Full of adorable accoutrements that make you wish you knew how to cook and food that lets you know you're better off not knowing, Pasta & Co. is a very pleasing way to be in a mall without, you know, really being there. SEAN NELSON

The Pink Door
Downtown, 1919 Post Alley; 443-3241
The spacious wooden deck with colored lights at the Pink Door seems to suspend time a little--or perhaps it's the snail's pace of the passing ferries--which is a lovely way to pass a summer evening noshing on a tasty antipasto plate. NATE LIPPENS

Ray's Boathouse
Ballard, 6049 Seaview NW, 789-3770
Ray's Boathouse has a huge, comfy deck--the kind of expansive space you really can imagine lounging on for a while, right on the water, with a very good view of Bainbridge Island. It's a seafood lover's dream with delectable crab and fish specials, and a very cheap happy-hour menu. NATE LIPPENS

Capitol Hill, 719 E Pike St, 323-6636
Rosebud serves consistently delicious fare, and best of all, it's in an atmosphere where you can actually relax and enjoy yourself. The inside is nonsmoking and the cozily enclosed back patio offers a great escape from the world where you can also grab a smoke. NATE LIPPENS

Sambar (at Le Gourmand)
Ballard, 425 NW Market St, 781-4883
Behind Ballard's swanky Le Gourmand is Sambar, the small, stylish joint offering booze of all kinds and delights from the Le Gourmand kitchen. Behind Sambar is a sweet garden area, the perfect place to enjoy the best fruits of both establishments. Sambar serves up the drinks (wine, beer, a variety of specialty cocktails); the kitchen of Le Gourmand produces select treats (smoked salmon rosettes, cumin chicken pastilles, ambitious cheese plates); everybody wins. DAVID SCHMADER

Capitol Hill, 214 Broadway Ave E, 860-8858
If you don't mind feeling like you're seated in even more of a fishbowl than the restaurant's popular indoor booths, Septieme's small outdoor area brings a little sidewalk-cafe feel to Capitol Hill. The basic pasta, seafood, burger, and salad options taste all the better when consumed with a cocktail in the sun--even if that means greeting most of Broadway during your meal. JENNIFER MAERZ

Virginia Inn
Belltown, 1937 First Ave, 728-1937 The historic little pub in the belly of downtown has a simple menu and a good beer selection, from local craft brews to imports. Six tiny tables flank the sidewalk on First Avenue and outdoor dining is best at lunch or late evening after rush-hour traffic has ebbed. Competition for the outdoor tables is heavy at 5 p.m. on warm afternoons but it's worth the trouble if there's only one or two of you (the booths inside are better for groups). Try the quiche of the day or a rich bowl of French onion soup with your pint. AMY KATE HORN

Downtown, 1619 Third Ave, 770-0813 and 108 Cherry St, 624-5687
Zaina serves affordable and carefully crafted Middle Eastern food: super satisfying gyros, fresh falafel, heaping salads, and silky hummus on top of almost everything. I went there looking for take-out--and it is possible to eat a heavenly eggplant-stuffed pita on the run--but you'd be a fool not to linger and enjoy the fantastic décor and raucous atmosphere. The downtown location serves food late, has a hookah bar in the back, and is a fun cheap-date place (better make sure your date is cool with the insane garlic breath that follows). Praise be to whatever forces persuaded the Palestinian owners to peddle their delights here. AMY KATE HORN


Baguette Box
Capitol Hill, 1201 Pine St, 332-0220
This Pine Street destination turns on-the-go grub into gourmet fare. Baguette Box's sandwiches are worlds apart from places like Subway, from the fresh-crusted French bread to the delectable fillings. Choose from Salumi meat sandwiches or grilled vegetables--the caramelized onions accent nearly every choice. With small salads and soups rounding out the menu, Baguette Box is the perfect stop whether you're hungry after happy hour on the Hill or returning from a downtown shopping spree. JENNIFER MAERZ

Dahlia Bakery
Downtown, 2001 Fourth Ave, 441-4540
Next door to Tom Douglas' Dahlia Lounge, there's a teeny bakery that's packed with cookies, bread, pastries, and desserts like crème brûlée and bite-size coconut crème pie. But tucked in among the decadent offerings, there's also plenty of savory lunch fare. Check out sandwiches--Genoa salami with Gruyere, roast turkey with prosciutto, roasted shitake mushrooms with watercress--all on fresh baked bread, plus salads and a daily special crostata. AMY JENNIGES

DeLaurenti Specialty Food and Wine
Downtown, 1435 First Ave, 622-0141
You're saying you think you're into Italian style--you want cured meats, mozzarella di bufalo, fancy olives and tapenades. Maybe you're also looking for a few bottles of Pellegrino or--better--a bottle of Lambrusco, a bodacious baguette, some imported Genoese tuna, bottled capers, and a bundle of biscotti or amaretto cookies. If so, DeLaurenti is an essential stop to round out your picnic basket. Or you might head straight to the cafe for a quick latte and a few panini--everything, from the Caprese to the Parma to the Parisian, can be made to go. CHRISSY LOADER

Dish D'Lish
Downtown, 1501 Pike Pl, 223-1848
The food showcased throughout the Pike Place Market is great, but let's face it: You can't eat a fresh salmon, most of the market's raw vegetables, or hunks of straight-from-the-butcher meat when you're strolling down the cobbled, tourist-clogged street. Enter Dish D'Lish. If you're craving quick, gourmet yet homestyle food--veggie lasagna, meatloaf, roasted chicken, beef tenderloin, skewered teriyaki, breakfast stratas, not to mention sides, salads, and sweets--this is the place to be. Indulge yourself, or impress everyone at your next barbeque by passing it off as your own. AMY JENNIGES

Ezell's Fried Chicken
Central District, 501 23rd Ave, 324-4141
Simply the finest fried chicken in the country. You can eat it in your car, on your way somewhere, or at any destination. Scenery is always nice, but the truth is that you will be completely engrossed in eating, which is the finest mark of to-go food--its ability to make you forget where you are. NATE LIPPENS

Honey Hole
Capitol Hill, 703 E Pike St, 709-1399
Honey Hole, a Pike-Pine staple, has perfected the art of effortlessly making whatever they stick between two pieces of (massive, French) bread taste like the best thing you've ever put in your mouth. Meatballs? Try the Luke Duke, the best meatball sub in town (and I've tried them all). Feeling a little more roast beefy? Strap on the Gooch, with smoky cheese and onions. If you're trying the turkey-pesto- provolone masterpiece known simply as "Waverider," why not get them to hold the onions and add some bacon? Or maybe you're just afraid of true happiness. They also have vegetarian sandwiches, fries, good soups, and a full bar--hello! SEAN NELSON

Ivar's Salmon House
Wallingford, 401 NE Northlake Way, 632-7223
Yeah, Ivar's can be a tourist trap most of the year, but when the weather turns nice, its back patio is a prime happy-hour spot. From 3:30 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. (and again from 9 p.m. until close), the drink and food specials are extra incentive to wait for the first-come, first-served outdoor area. With an unobstructed view of Lake Union's houseboats and downtown straight across the water, the place is tough to beat. And the fish tacos aren't half bad. JENNIFER MAERZ

La Panzanella
Capitol Hill, 1314 E Union St, 325-5217
Named after the famous Italian bread salad, La Panzanella serves up delicious panini sandwiches made with everything from roasted eggplant, to tomatoes and mozzarella, to prosciutto di Parma on either a buttery focaccia or a freshly made ciabatta roll. They also serve soups, such as their rosemary-infused Tuscan white bean, various pizzettes and mixed salads, providing a selection of homemade cookies and mineral waters to round out your lunch. Here you'll find everything you need to assemble an Italian-style picnic, even if you plan to eat it American-style on the curb next to the Bobby Morris Playfield. CHRISSY LOADER

Le Fornil
Eastlake, 3230 Eastlake Avenue E, 328-6523
If you can wrest your eyes away from the glass pastry case inside Le Fournil, you might be able to stumble out of the little French cafe with a baguette sandwich perfect for nibbling on the go. But it'll be difficult: You'll have to avert your gaze from the delicious-looking pain au chocolat, blackberry tarts, éclairs, and other enticing pastries. Or don't. For $6.99, you can get a sandwich--ham, cheese, pâté--and a pastry (and even a beverage). Sounds like a picnic by the Seine… er, Lake Union… to me. AMY JENNIGES

Belltown, 2408 First Ave, 448-4032
I love it when it gets warm in Seattle and Macrina's bakers open their doors, allowing the fabulous aroma of freshly baked breads and sweets to drift out over the sidewalk in front of the store. Inside you'll find a café and bakery with some of the most gorgeous baguettes in Seattle--as well as scrumptious cakes and cookies, delectable focaccia, organic salads, and hefty sandwiches all packaged to go. I dream of a decadent picnic from Macrina with a half herb-roasted chicken, an orzo salad, and a slice of lemon poppy-seed cake. CHRISSY LOADER

Mad Pizza
First Hill, 4021 E Madison St, 329-7037
Sure, you can find Mad Pizza's generous, topping-heavy slices of pie all over town, from First Hill to Fremont (and they deliver). But for the best experience, you'll have to head to Madison Park. That location boasts tables and chairs scattered on the sidewalk, where you can enjoy pizza that's classic (pepperoni, anyone?) or exotic (Yukon Gold potatoes!) in the middle of the neighborhood's quaint retail strip. The truly adventurous take their slices to go, and walk a few blocks east to the Madison Park beach. AMY JENNIGES

Other Coast Cafe
Ballard, 5315 Ballard Ave NW, 789-0936
If you've never had the urge to devour an entire human leg before, you might want to skip the OCC, whose sandwiches are bigger than outer space, bigger than the imagination, bigger than infinity. Made with the absolute best of everything (including Boar's Head meats), and served by beautiful sandwich makers who act like they don't own it, Other Coast sandwiches are aptly named--there's not another place like it for a browsy Ballard afternoon. SEAN NELSON

Fremont, 4225 Fremont Ave N, 545-7440
There are sandwiches, and then there are sandwiches. Paseo's pork sandwich, replete with sweet onions, mayo, and cilantro (which they'll happily hold if you ask) is one of the 10 best reasons to live in Seattle. The rest of the fare on this tiny little Cuban restaurant's menu is also excellent--even the rice and beans are exquisite, to say nothing of the little corn cobs--but the pork sandwich is a genuine work of art. SEAN NELSON

Philadelphia Fevre
Central District, 2332 E Madison St, 323-1000
The sandwiches at Philadelphia Fevre are incredibly good, good enough to live up to the name of the revered sandwich mecca, Philadelphia. The shaved meat is piled on with a delicate bit of cheese. You can't go wrong no matter which kind you choose, but I do guarantee you won't make it far before you start to hastily gobble it up. NATE LIPPENS

R & L Home of Good Barbeque
Central District, 1816 E Yesler Way, 322-0271
The Louisiana-style food at R & L Home of Good Barbeque is as confident and simple as its name. Not that the flavors aren't complex or that the ribs won't stun you just a little into speechlessness, but the no-frills "we are very good at what we do" feel of the place comes from being in business for 50 years. After all, why mess with a good thing? Get something to go and find an audacious place to eat it. Is there anything as decadent (yet still legal) as public consumption of barbecue? NATE LIPPENS

Downtown, 309 Third Ave S, 621-8772
Salumi is the worst place to sit and eat because it's too small, and at lunchtime it's always packed with busy people. What you want to do is go there just before the lunch-hour rush, order one of the fantastic sandwiches, and eat it at a nearby park (the Japanese garden above Seventh and Main, or Waterfall Park just around the block). The Italian meats that Salumi prepares and cures bring nothing but sheer happiness to the third greatest human organ, the mouth (the brain, which is number one, can very well imagine what the second best organ is). CHARLES MUDEDE

Seattle Deli
International District, 225 12th Ave S, 328-0106
Though generically named the Seattle Deli is exceptionally delicious. What makes it exceptional are a few practical matters--ample parking, quick and friendly service, and a bright, new space--but in particular, it's the sandwiches. You can't go wrong by any of them--for $1.25 to $1.75, these are some of the tastiest sandwiches around--but the classic Vietnamese version, called banh mi, on a fresh baguette with your choice of meat (my favorite is the grilled pork) is the best. NATE LIPPENS

Spud Fish & Chips
Green Lake, 6860 E Green Lake Way N, 524-0565
A month back I was driving by Spud and saw a couple celebrating their 50th anniversary. This is the sort of place Spud is--a little divey but with history and a heart. The fish is a whole breast of fish, crispy on the outside, tender and flakey inside. The accompanying "chips" are golden and the length of an Idaho. Order your fish to go, walk across to Green Lake and sit on a bench and watch the rollerbladers, speedwalkers, and the man offering Spanish lessons while you snack on your chips and generously malt your cod. CHRISSY LOADER

University District, 4754 University Way NE, 441-6366
Given the panoply of sandwich options in the U-District, and the relative ease and comfort of finding whatever you want on the Ave, you gotta give it up to Subs for sticking around and continuing to craft top-flight heroes with great meat and better bread. There's nothing super specific about what they do; they just make great, great big sandwiches that far outstrip their direct competitors (the assembly-line empire of Subway, the creepy curio called Zilly's) at reasonable prices. SEAN NELSON

Tacos Guaymas
Capitol Hill, 213 Broadway Ave E, 860-7345; Green Lake, 6808 E Green Lake Way N, 729-6563
I've tried many different burrito joints, but this is the place that fulfills my burrito craving, setting me into that drift that many call "the burrito coma." I've tried almost all Guaymas locations in Seattle, though I'll admit I prefer the atmosphere and the burritos at the Broadway and East John taqueria. I also recommend the Green Lake location for its outside seating, its view of Green Lake (and the visual stimulation that comes with it), its full bar, and its happy-hour specials. Also try Guaymas' camarones (shrimp) tacos and their al pastor (barbecue pork) tacos. CHRISSY LOADER

Three Girls' Bakery
Downtown, 1514 Pike Pl, Suite 1, 622-1045
Three Girls' counter staff is adept at wrapping up their hefty sandwiches to go, so you can stroll down the Pike Place Market hill climb to the waterfront, find one of the picnic tables scattered on the piers, and watch the ferries roll in as the sun starts to set across the bay. The bakery's specialties range from marinated eggplant and cold cuts, to meatloaf and chicken salad (studded with pineapple!), all with lots of fixings and a big pickle, and all perfect fare for the a romantic summer-night dinner date. AMY JENNIGES

International District, 600 Fifth Ave S, 624-6248 Going to a Mariners game? Stop by Seattle's beloved Japanese mega-market on your way and pack a superlative picnic. Uwajimaya makes the best take-out sushi in town and has a variety of fresh, ready-to-eat deli and bakery items, plus big bags of peanuts and kettle-corn at good prices. The food court (open until 9 pm) offers lots of out-of-the-ordinary take-out meals, including Korean barbecue, Hawaiian specialties, and outstanding ice cream (try the green tea flavor) and bubble tea at the Honey Moon Tea Co. AMY KATE HORN

Other places to grab something and go that can't be overlooked are Vio's Cafe & Marketplace (Capitol Hill, 909 19th Ave E) which has sizable and dependably filling pitas; Piecora's (Capitol Hill, 1401 E Madison St) where you can pick up a piece of pizza by the slice and make your way in the world; and Frites Belgian Fries (Capitol Hill, 945 E Pike St, no phone) tucked inside the building that houses Neumo's and serving thick-cut Belgian frites flecked with kosher salt. And lat but not least is Dick's (various locations). Yes, the lines of often-scary people bring to mind the phrase "teeming masses" and the disgustingly brazen pigeons can be a turn-off, but Dick's is as street as it gets. Sometimes nothing soaks up the booze so pleasingly as one of those cheeseburgers. And the shakes are delicious.