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Lampreia Restaurant - Seattle, WA - Reviews page 1 - Judysbook

Lampreia Restaurant

2400 1st Ave
Seattle, WA 98121
(206) 443-3301
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We went to Lampreia with some friends who also relocated from San Francisco and recommended this restaurant highly. In San Francisco, we made a point of visiting the Chronicle To...


I know chef Scott Carsberg through a business connection, and on more then one occasion had to listen to him swearing violently at the receptionist in our office because he was un...

Fabulous meal, excellent service, warm and friendly. 1/24/2009

We went to Lampreia with some friends who also relocated from San Francisco and recommended this restaurant highly. In San Francisco, we made a point of visiting the Chronicle Top 100 restaurants, and frankly we have missed that standard of quality in restaurants here.... until visiting Lampreia. Our meal was sublime! The service was friendly and without the pretense mentioned in the Seattle reviews. All four of us ordered the eight-course prix fixe and we were delighted. For those who truly love food that transcends time and place, Lampreia will not disappoint. Each course seemed to supersede the last! If you love great, imaginative and delicious cuisine, do not miss Lampreia. It is truly an experience you will never forget. Pros: Innovative cuisine and excellent service. Cons: Parking. more

Great special occasion restaurang 8/21/2008

I'm glad to read the last two reviewers in July had a great time, as did we. I had read several of the bad reviews. Fortunately good friends took us to celebrate their birthday, and we enjoyed being with them as well as the unique and excellent food. I'm a comfort food, enjoy my own soup or stew at home guy, which means when I go out, I'm looking for a special experience. Of course, the presentation is very arty, but each course tickles different taste buds. The veal chop was especially excellent. The service was friendly, informative, and helpful without being intrusive, even when I asked a dumb question (about salads--they don't serve them). And the chef showed none of the bad humor that some of the earlier reviewers mentioned. We had a friendly visit about an earlier experience we had shared. If you eat out lots of nights, and have become too jaded to have a unique dining experience, go somewhere else. For a special occasion, we found it excellent. more

great food 7/28/2008

Best restaurant in seattle hands down. Proffessional and informative sevice, beautiful great tasting food, what more could you want. Obviously this isn't an every night restaurant but I nly say that because I would get the five or eight course everytime. Also great wine selection. Pros: food, decor, service Cons: the crowd in bell town late at night more

perfection 7/16/2008

Well I honestly don't know how anyone could give Lampreia a bad review. It was one of the most memorable dinners I have ever had. I took my girlfriend for our year anniversary and decided to go with the chef's five course. Since we didn't know what we would be having I had one of the knowledgable waiters pick a bottle of wine to pair with the whole menu. We told him that we wanted something foreign and interesting. The waiter picked a chardonnay by domaine serene which paired beautifully with our dinner. First we started off with crab wrapped in melon. It was a an interesting light and refreshing way to start. After that we moved to another exquisite dish. A hard boiled egg marinated in beet juice filled with salmon roe and creme fraiche. It was definately the most beautiful and tastiest deviled egg ever. After that we had a corn soup with rhubard and salmon dumplings. The aroma of the soup as it was poured in was a tuning fork for the soul. And then the main course was bass accompanied with whipped potatoes done with pequillo pepper. Simple but great. Dessert was one of my favorite courses as well. Pistacio ice cream with strawberry sauce and caramel. The chef was actually friendly and said good night to me at the end of our evening. The waiters were perfect and attentive but not in a somerthing way, great choice of wine by the way, and the experience was extremely memorable and romantic. I highly recommend Lampreia for special occassions or even every day. It's fairly affordable and worth every penny and more. more

Poor ambience, poor service, average food 6/24/2008

I know chef Scott Carsberg through a business connection, and on more then one occasion had to listen to him swearing violently at the receptionist in our office because he was unhappy about something or other. No apology, no realization that the receptionist probably wasn't going to be able to help him for whatever problem he had, just angry, diva syndrome and foul language. more

Lampreia...Where artistry takes precedence over taste 5/12/2008

To celebrate my 50th birthday, my family selected Lampreia. I had never been there, but had read some reviews. If the food had been exquisite, it wouldn't have mattered if I had to park 20 blocks away. It was a fabulous evening just being there with my family. Yet, all the ambiance and artistry cannot make up for tasteless or bad tasting food. Presentation should not take precedence over taste. We had the eight course tasting menu. The service was impeccable, and although it was stiff and snooty, it was fitting for the circumstance. The champagne had delicate fruit undertones that were light and crisp. The bread was fresh, yet uninteresting. The apple/dungeness dish was quite nice. The truffle cream on which the soup was poured was wonderful, yet the soup was disappointing -- lacking in flavor. Most of the other dishes were unremarkable and forgettable. The chicken liver pate was bitter and sour tasting. Awful! The tuna proscuitto with sea urchin had a nice intense ocean flavor, but the overall dish was just okay. The lamb dish was nice. The meal overall was lacking in VEGETABLES. The chocolate mousse and orange frise (sp?) were both very good, but there was no offer of coffee, espresso, tea... NOTHING! I find that coffee enhances chocolate and was VERY disappointed that it was not offered. The mini cookies would have been great with espresso. The cheese dish (baked with honey) was very nice. The cabernet (and all of the wines) were very nice. Pros: Attentive service Cons: Food is better looking than tasting, no coffee service? more

Worst fine-dining experience ever! 2/15/2008

How could this restaurant be rated 5 stars? The service was slow and untimely. The waiter was very rude to us when we ordered to share (even though it amounted to $800). Our table was unattended for a long time without water in the glass, yet they were eager to clear the dishes that we were still working on. We didn't even get the small plate for individual use, and were forced to use tiny bread dish to serve ourselves. I asked the head-waitress about this inconvenience, and she said that the restaurant was not accustomed to serve food for share. The worst was the chef. When one of my friends stepped outside for a couple of minutes to check the call, the chef came over to our table and asked if he left. We explained that he would be right back, and that there was no need to wait for him if the order was ready. The chef looked angry, rolled his eyeballs, and left us without a word. It was as if we were being sacrilegious to the art he was about to offer or something... we all lost our speech and looked at each other with disbelief. I have been to most of renowned restaurants in Seattle, and usually, the finer the place is, the finer the experience is. The restaurant going is not just about food quality, but the total experience that makes us want to go back. At Lampreia, I felt we had to be A+ student for the ""divine art"" of chef Carsberg, in order to be treated human. I will never go back there. Never. Pros: Visually interesting presentation of food Cons: Food is not that great for the price, for the hard-to-find parking, for the terrible services. more

Presentation takes precedence over culinary excellence 2/3/2008

Lampreia?s food presentation is a visual work of art, but the food, unfortunately, is a secondary consideration. Visual appeal is a part of fine cuisine, but it should not be at the sacrifice of the food itself. Here the cuisine suffers at the expense of visual affectation. A duck dish included smaller than dime-sized dabs of several ?fruit mustards,? which were attractive on the plate, but too insignificant to play a role in augmenting the dish---no great loss, however, as the flavors integrated poorly with the duck and its sauce. The sauteed bass, at $30.00, was good, but rather bland with no saucing and little seasoning, and it was nothing that could not be accomplished at home by a decent cook, albeit perhaps without the elegantly curlicued scallion that served as the artistic garnish. Occasionally, the presentation and cuisine mesh well, as with the Dungeness crab in a roll of paper thin apple slices, but regrettably such success is the exception rather than the rule. Several of the servers were cold and aloof, though ours was friendly and accessible. One other server seemed friendly and accessible as well, though perhaps not for long, as we observed the chef/owner treating him in a demeaning manner. The staff appear to have been brow-beaten into robotic automatons. We also observed the chef/owner behaving brusquely to certain guests whom he apparently deemed unworthy. A dinner here is quite expensive. We would gladly pay a similar price for a special meal at one of the Seattle area?s many fine restaurants---but not here. Not again. We will not be returning. Pros: Food as stunning visual art Cons: Indifferent and pretentious cuisine. Cold atmosphere. Owner/chef rude and condescending more

Skip It! 5/20/2007

Since moving to Seattle over 11 years ago Lampreia has been high on our list of places to try. We finally made it there for my birthday last night and I can't remember a single ""fine dining"" experience where I felt surly, annoyed and hungry by the end of the meal. We spent close to $400 after splurging on the 8 course tasting menu with accompanying wines...which is all good and fine if the food is tasty and interesting. To be fair, the food was very interesting to look at and were little works of art, but nothing was particularly tasty. He used some beautiful crab, but I could have run down to Mutual Fish and bought comparable crab and stuffed myself silly all night for $40. Our waiter was awkward at best and with each course they would drag out a linen lined cart, drop a silver tray with the dishes and then present them to the table. It got to be a bit much after watching this go on for several hours. I also hate going to a nice restaurant where they try to upsell you on things like bottled water or tiny bottles of olive oil. If they think the olive oil is so magical then why not drop two tablespoons on each table and let people try it. To start your meal with some weird olive oil infomercial and then be told ""that we will be allowed to take the remaining olive oil home with as a momento of our evening"" just made me want to run for the hills. But, I settled down and enjoyed some yummy champagne in anticipation of a good meal. Too bad it never happened. Bland food and we did not have a single warm dish. Two crab dishes, a slice of duck, a pea pancotta, a horribly unseasoned and chewy ravioli with a runny egg center, a duck breast and for dessert two yogurty dishes. The only standout were the petit fours. Sadly, on the way home we ended up buying a few slices of Hot Mama's. There are so many interesting chefs making innovative and tasty food you shouldn't waste your time at Lampreia. I'm still annoyed that we spent so and got so little. Pros: Beautiful and artistic appearing food Cons: Food is boring to eat, ambience is stiff more

An amazing dining experience, not just a restaurant. 3/25/2007

My husband and I had gone to Lampreia a few years ago after reading a review in a ""Seattle's Best"" book, and we loved it. Decided to go back again for our anniversary this year. We invited some friends, but after they read all of the negative reviews on this site they decided not to go. Too bad, because it's the most amazing dining experience! Yes, we did spend $500 on just the two of us- but we CHOSE to go all out. We had drinks before dinner, the 8-course Chef's Tasting Menu, a good bottle of wine, the extra cheese plate, the madeira to go with it, the $12 bottle of oil for the bread! I can't imagine the types of behaviors talked about by some of the reviewers on this site. Making the reservation was easy as pie, we were a few minutes late, but didn't get an angry cell phone call! The waiters were friendly, knowledgeable, ever present, but not hovering. When I got up to use the ladies room, a waiter quickly stopped what he was about to do and escorted me to the door to the hallway. The 8 course tasting menu was absolutely amazing. Yes, each course looks small on the plate- the presentation is part of the experience for heaven's sake! By the time we got to the end, I was actually uncomfortably stuffed- I think I'll go for the 5-courses next time!! The taste sensations are like nothing you have ever encountered, and the descriptions given by the waiters are brief, factual, and necessary. I wish I had a written description of everything we had to eat last night! If you're looking for a big ol juicy steak, or a traditional seafood dinner with baked potato and side of vegies, then you really should just go to one of the many fine restaurants in Seattle as mentioned by others on this site. Lampreia is most assuredly not that type of restaurant. If you have a sense of adventure when it comes to dining, and can afford to drop some coin once in a while for an out of this world feast, then you must go to Lampreia. We will definitely be back again! Pros: Outstanding food and service. Cons: Can be very expensive. more

Behavior unbecoming a great restaurant, go elsewhere 3/16/2007

The staff at Lampreia made making, and cancelling a reservation one of the most uncomfortable experiences ever. These people lack even the most common decency and consideration one would expect from a complete stranger, let alone a customer willing to spend $$$$ for a dinner. That the chef/owner, manager and host all readily assume their guests have zero integrity and unforgivable intentions tells much of the kind of people they are. Never again will I, or my colleagues, visit Lampreia. I would implore all those who read this to follow suit. Cons: Insulting and unprofessional staff more

For an Outstanding Dining Expericence ""Like No Other"" 3/9/2007

I have been frequenting Lampreia for several years and it is absolutely the best restaurant I have ever dined at. That includes the best of establishments in Seattle, the Napa Valley and other metropolitan areas in CA, to name a few. Scott, owner and chef, is truly an ?artist? with food and is incredibly passionate. His creativity flourishes in the manner in which he pairs flavors to create a dining experience like no other! And, if you are wondering, there is a difference between ?dining? and ?eating out?. From my experiences, the average Washingtonian requires inexpensive food, a lot of it and no preference regarding the quality of the service to rate a restaurant as excellent. If that is you then Lampreia is not your type of establishment. If you relish a true quality dining experience then it is the restaurant of choice. The wait staff at Lampreia is truly knowledgeable, respectful and professional. As referenced in an earlier post they ?watch you? so they can ensure that they provide the appropriate service at the exact moment during your entire visit. They are not trying to make anyone uncomfortable. They absolutely provide a European service experience, which, is lost on most local residents. To those of you that recently say you had a bad experience at Lampreia. Shame on you for submitting 5 posts!!! That is obviously indicative of your sophistication or lack there of. I can see how that would carry over to your behavior in public at the restaurant that evening. People like you are usually not worth the trouble you cause those in the service industry. So, to others, if you are looking for a wonderful restaurant with exquisite food take the chance and visit my favorite Seattle restaurant! Pros: You won't find flavors, aromas and tastes like this anywhere! The prices are worth it. more

Lampreia a Seattle masterpiece! 3/9/2007

Lampreia is simply the finest dining experience, not only in Seattle, but on the west coast. The service is impeccable and the food esquisite. The creativity that Scott demonstrates in the development of his cusine reflects his committment to presenting the diner with dishes unmatched in other fine venues. I have visited Lampreia routinely since it was opened. I have never been disappointed and frequently surprised, once again, by Scott's creativity. This is especially the case if you have Scott cook for you. He has the ability, honed from many years of cooking on several different continents, to pair food and wine while also catering to the desires of his customers. Pros: Creative dishes, polished service, pleasant atmosphere more

Plain Jane/Joe's Monster Garage run by a Seinfeld Soup German in Belltown. 3/8/2007

T'was a sorry experience of a starkly decorated, Eastern European - like, hang dog ambiance, under the helicopterish hovering of a sophomorishly trained wait staff of depressed glum drifters on meth. I had fun... And when I left seriously devoid of all my monthly alottment of food/scotch/and cigar money, I felt like Ken Kesey must've when he got the hell out of Cuckoo's Nest... Food was good like Grandma's overdone roast only with truffles but Scottie is way too proud of it, as you wil find out when you get the bill. Our threesome dropped $600+ and I assuredly would rather have spent several fun and gorgeous evenings at Shiro's Sushi or El Gaucho's Steak House around the corner--or the Met downtown etc. etc.. Unless you like sociopathetic threatened dining where at any minute you sense a dark force and an underlying sense of doom and want to pay highly for it, don't go... However, if you like blowing gobs of money in a cemetary in N'arlans on mescaline with voo-doo--by all means take this white knuckler and tell Scottie his meat is overcooked!! Ha!! Pros: location. Cons: scary, overpriced,menu scam... more


I expected great things from this restaurant, but was highly disappointed. What a stark, sad place. The hostess ushered me in and looked glum. The waiter had a cold, uptight attitude. The chef looked like he needed a hug ? very stressed out, frantically flailing his hands around, with an angry look in his face. True, things happen in the kitchen, but I want my food to be made with at least a little passion and enthusiasm. The food was bland and the wine was way overpriced. Don?t go to this place if you want any warmth or great service. Pros: Location Cons: Chef needs a hug. more

The Worst of the Worst 3/7/2007

It has been the worst experience I've ever had at a restaurant. It was so unbelievable, I really don't understand why they are still in business. The service was a disaster. Lampreia's head chef and owner was ignorant and I believe had somewhat of a God-complex, thinking customers had the honor in tasting his food and being at his restaurant. His staff was demeaning, extremely rude and it was attitude galore. If you are like me and enjoy dining out because of great food, atmosphere and experience, I would suggest you look the other way to another restaurant who will appreciate you as not just a guest, but as a human being! Pros: The water was ok Cons: The service was horrific more

Worst Experience Ever! 2/25/2007

We were rudely shoved around by the waiter when we were sitting in our chairs, had our menus snatched from us, told that we were unwelcomed because we arrived with 9 people instead of the 7 we had reservations for. The restaurant was half empty! We know that it?s a small place, but that?s no excuse for being treated so horribly! When we tried to talk calmly to the owner to resolve the situation, she yelled, ?You?re rude for bringing 3 bottles of wine. GET OUT!? She shoved me out, slammed the door and locked it! Little did she know that those bottles were gifts! Cons: Rude service and obnoxious attitude! more

UGHH! 1/21/2007

This was the first restaurant where I felt really uncomfortable with bringing my child to. I wasted a good friday night to go to dinner at Lampreia and what a dissapointment. I realize that some children are not suited for a nice restaurant of this caliber, however my son was exceptionally well behaved. I have been to many nice restaurants in Seattle and no wonder, I have not heard good reviews about Lampreia, I can see why. The service staff was snobby and the food was mediocre. If you want a great dinner, go to Canlis or The Herbfarm, they are pricey restaurants but the service is wonderful and the food excellent! Pros: Getting the heck out of there! more

WAY OVERRATED!!!! 1/20/2007

The entire experiene was a wreck. They made a reservation for us in which it was clear that we were bringing a six month old child, and took a $35 per person deposit because it was Friday night( they were not busy at all for the record). They were obviously unpleased by the child being there. The chef/owner was scowling and completely unhappy. This child (my nephew) is the best behaved child I have ever seen, not a peep came out of him. The service went down hill from the second the child arrived. I had alread ordered $100 bottle of wine and a couple of martinis so the staff had to have known it would be a good ticket. Our service was disgraceful. The chef greated every table except for ours I'm assuming because of his hatred for children, but it was a bit dissapointing considering I had just spent $500 dollars in an hour and a half at his establishment. I've dined at some of the finest restaurants in the world and this is not one of them, the food was mediocre at best. The dishes looked much better than they tasted. In my opinion all of the meat was over cooked and the flavors clashed. I was not impressed, the food was not bad, but not to be remembered. Overall our experience was a dissapoinment, I recently bought a condo about a block and a half away and was hoping to find this restaurant to be my go to for culinary excellence, but it turned out to be a one time stop. I will not be going back with clients, friends, anyone. To top it off, the olive oil on the table is for sale, if you use it with your bread you buy the bottle and take the remainder home with you. It's quite laughable. It is hard to understand why the chef had such a supercilious attitude when his restaurant that only seats 40-50 was not even half full on a Friday night. For anyone thinking about going, there are much better places in the city. Pros: Leaving Cons: Food more

Unexcusable miss for fine dining 1/13/2007

Went to Lamperia in Jan 2007 and the menu described by the editor is not found in recent menu. Appetizers and intermezzo are abundant however the main course only offers 4 dishes and are pricey. I tried the 5 course tasting menu ""supposedly"" prepared by the chef Scott for $90. Everything was wonderful with the sampling of oranges with sashimi style fish, homemade sausage, apple crisp with dungeness crab roll EXCEPT for the pan seared bass. Ideally, fish should flake when pierced with a fork and mine was severely undercooked. The unknowledgeable waiter, probably never had fish properly prepared, questioned me about the taste and tried to show me how to cut into the fish with a fork and knife. Fortunately, the dish was returned after trying to convince the waiter the fish was undercooked and a freshly pan seared but oily bass came back. I guess this was an offnight for chef Scott who severely forgotten basic Fish 101 cooking. Service is impeccalbe but imposing when the staff is staring at you while you are eating. The apple gratin for dessert was ok, slightly overcooked with little sauce remaining. Six piece cheese course from Italy was expensive for $20 and I didn't try it. If you want EVOO with your bread then be prepared to pay $12 for a small bottle, unfortunately a sample is not even offered. Luckily I wasn't charged extra for the butter. Wines by the glass were uniformly priced at $10/glass but you don't get much of a pour. You are better off buying a bottle. Overall, originality reigns supreme but not worth the expensive prices. Pros: Originality on appetizzers and intermezzo Cons: No free EVOO for complimentary bread, undercooked bass, waiters staring at you while eating more
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Menu for Lampreia Restaurant

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  • The Scene
    A meal here is an event, easily stretching beyond two hours, with an intermezzo and cheese course. Waitstaff should be commended for congeniality and consummate service. Unlike...

  • 7/27/2004 Provided by Citysearch

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    Master Card, American Express, Discover, Visa
  • Neighborhoods:

    Downtown, Belltown

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