Explore Downtown's Main Street: Your Guide to Old Bellevue
February 27, 2023 - by Sandy Vo
Explore Downtown's Main Street:
Your Guide to Old Bellevue
In a not-so-hidden part of Downtown lies charming Old Bellevue – a walkable Main Street lined with local boutiques, restaurants, and retail designed to provide the much-needed small-town feel in an area where skyscrapers and tall buildings dominate. Read on for our comprehensive guide to Old Bellevue, where we hope to inspire you to shop, drink or dine at some of our favorite spots on Main Street.
Looking for a good filling breakfast in the morning? Check out Gilbert's on Main, one of Downtown Bellevue's longstanding businesses. For 26 years, they've provided an authentic deli sandwich experience featuring a breakfast and lunch menu with over 25 show-stopping sandwiches, soups, pancakes, omelets, breakfast bagels, and so much more.
What we recommend: The quintessential Gilbert's Reuben
It's delicious and mouthwatering – their legendary Reuben sandwich holds pastrami and corned beef, Swiss cheese, homemade coleslaw, and Russian dressing. This dish will offer the New York deli experience without leaving the Pacific Northwest.
While the all-pink exterior walls are eye-catching, the real magic happens inside. Matcha Magic prioritizes your health first, offering a full menu of matcha lattes, tonics, and a collection of hearty grab-and-go like acai bowls and toasts. When you dine at Matcha Magic, you're part of a bigger cause. They donate 5% of all sales to Ladies Who Launch, a nonprofit organization that aims to empower a global community of women and non-binary entrepreneurs by providing educational resources, funding mentorship, networking, and community.
What we recommend: Fruity Pebbles Matcha
It's their mid-winter special! Come in and enjoy the Fruity Pebbles Matcha mixed with Fruity Pebbles cereal milk, matcha, and Fruity Pebbles.
Bar Moore's ode to European style, culture, and cuisines makes them a must-try spot on Main Street. Their core values of family, hospitality, community, and great food creates a welcoming environment for typical locals, out-of-town foodies, and passersby. When you book a table here, you can expect to indulge in fresh seafood and shellfish, a variety of bubbles, classic cocktails, and other PNW classics.
What we recommend: Bar Moore Seafood Tower
There's nothing better than fresh seafood, that's why Bar Moore's seafood tower is one to remember. You'll have a chance to try half-dozen oysters, crab legs, poached prawns, and a half-lobster tail. Upgrade your meal by adding caviar!
Araya's Place's slogan, 'Vegetables taste better here,' is a testament to their vast knowledge of cooking vegan food. In 1987, they became the first vegan-Thai restaurant to open in the Northwest, providing delicious and feel-good vegetarian and vegan dishes while supporting local farms. Every dish is prepared fresh to order and can be made to accommodate all dietary and allergy restrictions. Next time when you're taking a stroll through Old Bellevue, stop by for lunch or dinner.
What we recommend: Tom Yum Soup
During the winter, we like to spring for soup. That's why we recommend Araya's Place's delicious tom yum soup, made with soft tofu, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, scallions, and cilantro in a tom yum paste, lime juice flavored with lemongrass, lime leaf, galanga, and chili paste.
Mercato Stellina Pizzeria combines good wine and great pizza for the ultimate pairing. The classic brick oven pizzeria is best known for their house-made crust, fine-cured meats, and their long list of delectable wines.
What we recommend:Prosciutto Di Parma
We can't choose just one but if we had to, it'd be Mercato Stellina Pizzeria's prosciutto di parma brick oven pizza topped with tomato, mozzarella, arugula, prosciutto, and parmigiano Reggiano. Personal sizes are available for $18!
Smith & Main is your classic women's contemporary clothing boutique that carries everything you need to look your best. Owner Chanel Smith stocks her store with up-and-coming new lines, unique, eclectic jewelry, and accessories. Their goal? To provide each client with the best shopping experience and a wardrobe that inspires confidence.
Need-to-know: The sale section at Smith & Main
Balling on a budget? Smith & Main offers a large sale section for those who want to look great without breaking the bank. Their sales section has what you need, from classic black boots and everyday sweaters to rock band t-shirts. Browse their sale selection online.
Woman-owned, Title Nine is known in the community for creating and curating workout gear and clothing for women in various fits, sizes, styles, and colors. For the last 30 years, they have dedicated themselves to providing athletic wear to women that can help them train better and faster. Get prep for summer and hiking season at their Old Bellevue location!
Need-to-know: When you shop at Title Nine, you're part of a bigger mission.
Title Nine was named after Title IX, a 1972 act that prohibited any public institution from limiting participation in sports based on a person's gender. A few years later, owner Missy Park saw low interest in designing athletic apparel for women, so she decided to build a business providing women's fitness gear and clothes for their bodies. You can learn more about their mission and other community outreach they've done here.
glassybaby creates luxury hand-blown glass gifts to provide hope and healing in the Greater Seattle area. Founder Lee Rhodes, a three-time cancer survivor, started the business after meeting many patients in chemotherapy and noticed they could not afford basic costs like groceries and bus fare. With glassybaby, Rhodes could sell beautiful objects while giving back to those in need. Since the beginning, they've expanded into neighborhoods that share their creativity and community spirit – including the Heart of Bellevue.
Need-to-know: glassybaby has donated more than $13 million to the glassybaby foundation.
The glassybaby foundation was founded in 2001 to help fund noble causes in partnership with its nonprofit friends. For every purchase made, the foundation receives a donation from each purchase to provide hope and healing. The wealth is distributed to help people, animals, and the planet. Find out more about the foundation on their website.
If you spend the majority of your time in the kitchen, Whisk was made just for you. This independent retailer features a curated selection of kitchenware, bakeware, barware, and unique tabletop serving pieces for everyday entertaining. It's also a great place to shop for gifts, check out their top 25 gift ideas.
Need-to-know: Whisk offers cooking classes!
Did you know Whisk is also a venue for cooking classes? They have a talented team of chefs on hand with diverse culinary backgrounds! Whether you're a natural or just learning, Whisk's cooking classes are for everyone – for those who love to entertain and want to refine their cooking skills, home chefs who want to keep up with cooking trends, aspiring cooks, and serious foodies alike. Browse their cooking classes online, space is limited, so sign up quick!
Sister company to LaRee Boutique – also in Old Bellevue – Gin & The Banker was founded on the idea that jewelry is a choice that reflects the owner's style, creating something personal that can be passed down for generations. They've aimed to introduce people to fine designer jewelry that will last for decades.
Need-to-know:Enjoy 10% off your first order with the code 'G&BWELCOME10' at checkout.
Everyone loves a deal, and Gin & The Banker has a great one happening now. Shop their high-end jewelry collection, from anklets and bracelets to earrings and charms. We recommend checking out their list of new designers in stock now!
This blog is part of the Heart of Bellevue: our campaign to showcase local businesses while connecting you with stories of activity, creativity and recovery. Find out about our campaign and explore more of what’s happening around Downtown.