Go Eat! A Seattle institution

Go Eat! A Seattle institution
It's a Seattle institution: The Georgian Room at the Fairmont Hotel.

"The restaurant is amazing. It's super high-ceilings, beautiful artwork, and that can be intimidating, but you just have to come in and experience it and hopefully walk away happy," says executive chef Gavin Stephenson.

Never eaten at The Georgian? Chances are, you don't think you can afford it - or are a bit overwhelmed by the over-the-top elegance. If so, Stephenson has a few choice words for you.

Gavin Stephenson

"I think you have to get over it, because it's only as intimidating as you want to make it. As soon as you have an opportunity to meet our staff you'll realize we're not pretentious at all. We take care of our diners and we treat them as if they were part of our family and we're inviting them into our homes."

Like most restaurant menus in Seattle, The Georgian Room's is steeped in local, sustainable ingredients.

"It's funny because if you look at what's driving the business today you talk about organics and local products and seasonability and sustainability - my mom did that 30-odd years ago," Stephenson says. "I didn't know what sliced bread was, my mom made bread. That's just the way it was."

Stephenson also credits his mom for his love of cooking.

"I think I was attached to my mom's apron. You know, I loved to eat, I loved to drink, it was a big part of my growing up; the dinner table was kind of where everything started and everything ended."

And for a fine-dining chef, Stephenson definitely knows more than his share about pinching pennies.

"I learned at a very early age, you know, that the friendly chicken I had at grandmas' house was going to be dinner one day. It was crazy. I grew up in the northeast of England in the 70s which wasn't a great time, but it was a great foundation for me."

Knowing he wanted to be a chef was easy. Knowing where he wanted to cook - not so much.

"I've worked here three different times; I kept leaving thinking that the grass was greener and, boy, Seattle's hard to beat for a culinary. We've just got amazing products and (we're a) thriving restaurant city. So, you know, it was a no-brainer. It took me three times to figure it out so I guess it wasn't a no brainer."

Places Chef Gavin likes to Go Eat!: Southbay Dickerson's BBQ (Olympia), Lampreia, The Hunt Club, Crush, Jak's.

For More Information: http://www.fairmont.com/seattle/