NEW FRESH FISH
Earth & Ocean, 1112 4th Ave., (206) 264-6060 - In any market, W Hotels make it their business to attract a chic crowd. But at this restaurant inside the downtown W, the food often upstages the fashion. Part of the reason is the food-as-art presentation of noted chef Johnathan Sundstrom. Mostly, though, it's because of the attention paid to seafood dishes like tuna carpaccio with crème fraîche and paddlefish caviar; young carrot soup with lobster and lime; and Dungeness crab salad with roasted corn, avocado, green chiles, and bacon-fat vinaigrette. (Vegetarian and meat entrees are also available.) And there's nothing fishy about the ever-changing dessert menu that's quickly become a Seattle favorite.
OLD FRESH FISH
Sunfish Seafood, 2800 Alki Ave. S.W., (206) 938-4112 - It's a good bet you've never heard of Sunfish, but you should. You probably also don't know that halibut fish n' chips are a Seattle staple and that few places do them as well as this local secret in West Seattle's Alki Beach (itself a local secret, with panoramic views of downtown and ferry traffic across Puget Sound). With a small courtyard filled with picnic tables next to the sidewalk, Sunfish is just across the street from the beach and always crowded on sunny afternoons. The seafood kabob is almost as popular as the halibut fish n' chips.
NEW SKYLINE VIEW
Seahawks Stadium (south end-zone bleachers), 800 Occidental Ave. S., (206) 381-7555 - Rarely do civic planners make one perfect decision, let alone three. For most Seattleites, it was good enough when the Kingdome was imploded in March 2000 - going to a game in the city's biggest eyesore was like watching sports in a parking garage. But then Seattle built gorgeous Safeco Field for baseball's Mariners and, in time for the 2002 season, opened the NFL's most striking new facility, the corporate-sponsor-free Seahawks Stadium. The team isn't currently as impressive as the view from the upper decks, which in addition to the action on the field takes in the downtown skyline, Space Needle, and part of Puget Sound. In summer, the view from the upper right-field-line bleachers at Safeco is almost as good and the Ichiro-led team a whole lot better.