Located in the historic Pike Place Market, Maximilien is a romantic and charming French restaurant with a panorama of Puget Sound, Elliott Bay, West Seattle, and the Olympic Mountains. The food is as spectacular as the view and has made Maximilien one of Seattle’s most intimate settings for over 30 years. The Chefs at Maximilien use local ingredients with French techniques.
The menu seasonally changes highlighting on the exquisite “Duck Confit” and other signatures. The recommend a reservation but it is not required. Just come and enjoy the view, food and drinks!
Open at 11:30am
On a beautiful sunny summer night in Seattle, and yes, they do occur (and when they do, OMG!), a gorgeous, flowery, covered patio overlooking Elliott Bay can only be improved upon with trays of chilly local oysters, rich foie gras with accompaniments, sparkling rose and a heavenly pan seared halibut dish – and a second sparkling rose. I love Maximilien in Pike’s Market for its patio in the summer and its warm dining room in the winter. But I love it for its very food-heavy happy hour menu, oysters and fish, fresh market veges in the summer, beautiful desserts and varied, approachable wine list.
I dined there solo last time, which was great because I got the half dozen oysters all to myself. They were plump and meaty, fresh and simply presented. The Foie Gras au Choix was rich with a fruit chutney and sweet cherries, and perfectly proportioned. And I’d definitely go back for the pan seared halibut – cooked perfectly, flakey and moist, and heavenly sopping up the beurre blanc around it.
In the past, I’ve tried and loved the divers scallops, as well. The scallops aren’t obscenely huge, which I appreciate, but they are so buttery and sweet, I always wish there was just one more on the plate… or maybe two more.
I don’t usually order desserts but my last visit was such a beautiful night, I kept eating so as to not loose my patio table! Profiteroles au chocolat. Filled with vanilla ice cream, topped in a rich, warm chocolate – simple but delicious!
Maximilien is right in the heart of Pike’s Market, which is fun; it’s owned by two brothers who are lovely hosts when you’re lucky enough to catch them there; and, again, that patio view! Fun to watch sail boats in the Bay, ferries moving across to the islands and a beautiful sunset.
Be aware that they do add a service charge to the bill which goes to the back of house staff, though it’s nominal. It’s clearly marked on the menu and on the bill when it comes out. More and more Seattle restaurants are adding the service charge, but this is one of the only places I can recall that charges a small service charge and expects a tip on top of that. Not a big deal, since they explain it nicely.