Irwin's recent response to the New Yorkers visiting Seattle for one evening intrigued me.
Irwin suggested that Canlis was the quintessential Seattle dining experience--especially for East Coast out of towners.
In some respects, he is correct. It was one of the first fine dining restaurants in the city and has sustained while others have gone. Canlis has survived the Belltown boom and targeted attacks (Stars, Cascadia, etc.) and prospered.
When I have dined there the service has been excellent, atmosphere unparalled and food that was above average (but not memorable).
So why don't I like this place?
Canlis never comes to my mind as a recommendation. Given the chance, I would rather dine at Nells or Kaspers (for similar food).
How do other Chowhounds feel about this Seattle institution?