The Steelhead Diner is a large place right next to Pike Place Market. Two walls of windows look out over the crowds of people. Seating is in booths, bar counter and kitchen counter stools and tables. Decorations between the booths is with acrylic encased fly fishing lures and photos of lures also decorate the walls. On the weekend the midday menu is for brunch. Service is efficient and friendly and the noise level is livable. It is a great location with a lively crowd but the unexciting food lacks soul.
We started with the Dungeness Crab and Bay Shrimp Tater Tots served with Tiger Sauce and Celery Leaf Salad. They sounded wonderful and were quite crisp and not too greasy. The sauce had a bit of horseradish taste and was nice as were the vegetables on top. However the tots needed a bit of salt and any shellfish taste was non existent. The textural contrasts were fun but the overall result would rate an okay.
For an main dish we had the Grilled Marinated Washington Hanger Steak and Eggs which was served with roasted shiitake mushrooms, hickory bacon, Marchand de Vin and a poached egg. The pieces of meat were quite chewy but nicely rare. A couple pieces of toast were underneath to give some crisp texture and absorb the sauce. The bacon was nicely meaty and tasty and way overshadowed the flavor of the meat. The beef was the toughest flat iron I’ve had and I wondered if another cut had been used instead. The poached eggs were too cooked for their yolks to add richness to the fine sauce which did need that addition. It was a good looking dish but the flavor, other than the bacon, just didn’t match the looks. One other gripe was the amount of parsley that covered the dish – it didn’t add to the dish nor add to the appearance. This plate went back to the kitchen with a lot of food still on it.