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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Counter service

Mon–Fri 8:00am–7:00pm
Sat–Sun 11:00am–7:00pm

Features Kid-friendly, outdoor dining
Bar Beer, wine
Credit cards Visa, MC


Pioneer Square
159 Yesler Way
Seattle, WA
(206) 264-8287
Tat’s Delicatessen
Decidedly nonfancy sandwiches, but still nothing special in their own right

Another East Coast deli—this one Philly-style—Tat’s is a middle finger in the face of the fancy sandwich spots popping up all over town. You can get a cheesesteak with Cheez Whiz, which is possibly the polar opposite of local, seasonal, and artisanal—and, also, in its own way, awesomely delicious.

Tat’s makes big sandwiches, sometimes with (genuinely) funny names—the “Tatstrami” (a pastrami cheesesteak with Swiss cheese and Russian dressing) has a very loyal following, although we think the basic cheesesteak (whiz wit’) is better. There are hoagies and grinders on Italian rolls, and meatball or chicken parms. This is very basic deli fare, but sandwiches have the balance and structural integrity lacking in many more pedigreed snacks. Speaking of snacks, if any misguided East Coaster is missing Tastykakes, you can find them here.

Tat’s does most of its business during lunch and before and after Sounders and Seahawks games (they even shift their hours around to accommodate the games). Service is brusque; you’d better be ready to order when your turn is up. But at midday or after the game, what more do you need than a soft Italian roll absorbing griddle grease and lovely meat juices, fats, onions and sucs, and oozes of Whiz? The pleasure centers of the brain are powerful motivators, and the lines at Tat’s are often longer than the ones at Salumi.

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