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New Seafood Restaurant in Downtown Bellevue, Water Grill Now Open

December 8, 2022 - by Sandy Vo

New Seafood Restaurant in Downtown Bellevue, Water Grill Now Open

Water Grill's seafood platter

For months, the giant floor-to-ceiling anchor sitting outside McCormick’s & Schmick’s old location in Lincoln Square North has been a sign for onlookers passing by that something new was coming. Now, this unoccupied space is ready to welcome guests to Water Grill, Downtown Bellevue’s newest seafood restaurant.

Water Grill Bellevue's interior

The California-born eatery premiered in 1989 and has since expanded to seven locations across the country. Water Grill Bellevue is their first appearance in the Pacific Northwest. Even after 33 years of business, their commitment to sourcing high-quality seafood locally and responsibly remains strong. We interviewed the Water Grill Bellevue Team about their decision to open downtown, some of the specialty dishes you can expect, and Water Grill’s long history on the West Coast.

Tell me a little bit about Water Grill’s background story.

In 1945, Co-founders Sam and Jeff King followed in their father’s footsteps and started building restaurants together. Family-owned and operated by King’s Seafood Company, the first Water Grill restaurant premiered in Los Angeles in 1989. Leveraging over 75 years of strong relationships to source the highest quality seafood, we’re committed to the community and our craft.  

Why did Water Grill choose Downtown Bellevue as their seventh location? 

Known as a fast-growing business destination in the Pacific Northwest, Downtown Bellevue is the premier destination for dining and nightlife in the region. The Bellevue Water Grill is our first in the Pacific Northwest and represents somewhat of a homecoming for us – much inspiration for the restaurant concept is drawn from the region, as is the seafood. 

What makes Water Grill stand out from other seafood restaurants in the Downtown Bellevue area? 

Water Grill represents a new seafood experience for residents and travelers. We are a committed community partner, employing nearly 200 crewmembers and supporting local fishermen, lobstermen, and oyster farms. The menu frequently changes with fresh catches and seasonal selections, offering a remarkable variety and value to guests. 

What specialty items on the menu do you recommend for the Bellevue community? 

Water Grill's black cod

Water Grill is proud to offer a first-of-season program that provides guests opportunities throughout the year to indulge in the first catch of each season straight from the water. The menu frequently changes to feature our freshest catch and what’s in season. We have a broad selection of seafood, including wild Alaskan black cod, Santa Barbara spot prawns, and chilled shellfish platters. We also serve one of the country's largest Pacific and Eastern oyster selections, featuring 14 varieties of oysters on the menu each day – including oysters farmed in the Pacific Northwest.  

Guest favorites include: 

  • Farmed Peruvian Bay Scallops with pistachio and citrus pesto 
  • New England Lobster Rolls 
  • Wild Spanish Octopus, charcoal grilled with fingerling potato, niçoise olives, roasted tomato, lemon, and olive oil 
  • Wild Ross Sea Chilean Sea Bass, complete with butternut squash gnocchi and sage brown butter 

For a taste of Water Grill yourself, visit them inside The Bellevue Collection! More information about Downtown Bellevue's new seafood restaurant can be found on their website.

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.


Water Grill Bellevue
700 Bellevue Way NE
Bellevue, WA 98004

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