Chef Brady Williams
Visited: August 19th, 2017 Saturday – Dinner Service
If there is a restaurant that defines class and timeless elegance, it is indubitably Canlis. I say this with utmost honesty, as with all four of my experiences here, they have consistently delivered superb execution of food and service. In fact, this restaurant has surpassed some of my personal 2* or 3* experiences in institutions that I have been to in popular food cities such as New York, San Francisco, even San Sebastián and Barcelona. Canlis is located in Seattle, WA, a city that is not known for fine-dining making this restaurant a captivating gem of the Pacific Northwest.
Founded by the late Peter Canlis in 1950, the restaurant has been with the family and is currently ran by Peter’s grandsons, Mark and Brian Canlis. Ever since the restaurant opened it’s doors, it has defined Seattle’s fine dining scene and has established a very loyal clientele. In its lifetime, Canlis has seen six Executive Chefs who have graced the kitchen. The sixth and current chef, Brady Williams joined the Canlis team back in April of 2015 when he was just 28-years-old.
Chef Brady Williams combines his Japanese-American heritage as well as his experiences as Executive Sous Chef at Roberta’s and 2* Blanca in Brooklyn, NY in his cooking. The addition of Chef Brady to Canlis has definitely brought a refreshing, exciting and youthful flare to the seasonal tasting menu.
The past 13 years that the husband and I lived in Seattle, we have celebrated a handful of milestone occasions at this restaurant including our wedding anniversary, husband’s 30th birthday, and graduations. Every time we visited, team Canlis never ceased to astound us with the overall experience. In deciding which restaurant we have to visit for last time before moving out of Seattle, Canlis easily came to our minds. Accompanying my husband and I for dinner are my best friend, Gigi and her husband, as we were celebrating my 31st birthday on this final visit.
Canlis offers two tasting menus: the Four-Course Tasting Menu where you select a dish with every courses, or the Chef’s Tasting Menu where you let Chef Brady take you along on a gastronomic adventure. Naturally, we opted for the latter along with wine pairings.
Towards the end of our meal, our host offered to tour us into the 67-year-old Canlis kitchen. Witnessing the action was like watching an orchestra, with each member of the team in their own stations creating exquisite food with their hands and their instruments. It was also fascinating to see Chef Brady Williams in action, a natural leader who plays an active and engaging part with his team.
Wine Cellar Tour
To conclude our experience at Canlis, we were invited into the esteemed wine cellar, boasting over 17,000 bottles of wine at the time of our visit. In May of 2017, Canlis was recently recognized by the James Beard Foundation and was awarded “Outstanding Wine Program”. A big part of this award was due to the leadership of Nelson Daquip, the Director of Wine and Spirits at Canlis, who has been curating the wine list at Canlis since 2002.
The Wine Program at Canlis also has trained four Master Sommeliers, and nine Advance Sommeliers. Very recently, Canlis has trained its fifth and newest Master Sommelier, Jackson Rohrbaugh, whom we had the pleasure to meet and who provided us with fantastic wine pairings for our dinner. Congratulations Jackson, we knew you could do it!
I have said this before and I will say it again, Canlis is the best fine dining restaurant in Seattle. In the four times that we visited this restaurant, we have always been enamoured by the phenomenal service and the excellent food. The noteworthy level of hospitality that we have received from this restaurant was largely due to every passionate member of the Canlis team. I would like to thank our fabulous host, Miranda, who not only was very knowledgeable about food, but made us laugh with our conversations about food and life. Special mention to the fantastic Sommeliers, Jackson and Nelson, who imparted their vast knowledge and passion into the wonderful wine pairings. I also would like to especially thank Chef Brady for making my birthday truly unforgettable through the incredible and exciting tasting menu that he created. Team Canlis, you guys are doing wonderful things at this restaurant and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for all of you.
If ever you find yourself in Seattle, eating at Canlis is a must. Order the tasting menu and venture along with Chef Brady’s marvelous creations.