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Fearless Critic restaurant review

Wed–Sat 11:00am–6:00pm
Sun noon–5:00pm

Features Good wines, kid-friendly, outdoor dining
Bar Beer, wine
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx


Phinney Ridge
6801 Greenwood Ave. N.
Seattle, WA
(206) 453-5867
The antithesis of potato salad and Fresca

Is there anything that shouts “urban privilege” more than a boutique deli predicated on the ideal picnic? Picnic’s overly earnest mission statement to free charcuterie from the trappings of the traditional restaurant is a little hard to take, but kudos to the shop for putting everything in one place—you’d have a hard time constructing a more pretentious spread without having to stop at four or five different specialty stores.

Top-quality cured meats and artisan cheeses are available by the pound or in simple sandwiches like mortadella and Fontina, or house-made corned beef and Comté on rye. Quiche, seasonal salads (including an excellent and light chicken salad—no mayo), and soups can also be ordered for take-out. Everything emphasizes seasonal, and when possible, local ingredients. The boutique side of Picnic includes a good, but expensive, selection of wine.

Whether you take your lunch to an area park or just scarf it down at one of the few seats, you’ll have a lot to tell your therapist later. If you’ve got blue-collar roots, then watching all the moms buzz around this cozy den of Euro-sleek, locally sourced smugness is bound to unearth feelings of rage regarding all the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and Fritos you had to endure as a child during real family picnics. Be sure to take home some ragù or braised short ribs to comfort you later.

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