Sawyer

4.6
331 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Sawyer is a casual yet chic new American restaurant and bar located in the heart of Ballard’s burgeoning restaurant scene. Designed for family style sharing, our menu is made up of large and small plates inspired by food that people crave, with a focus on technique, whimsy, and comfort. Featuring floor to ceiling windows, exposed beams and cozy booths, the renovated 1920s sawmill includes a main dining room, full bar and all-seasons enclosed patio.
What 331 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.6
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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c
Seattle
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 3

We tried Sawyer shortly after it opened. The food was good, but the service was terrible. We waited an eternity between courses. We just tried Sawyer again. A year in and they still can't get meals on the table in a timely manner. Again, we waited and waited. Both times we complained to the management--they were very apologetic and comped our drinks, but the terrible service was a mood killer which was particularly unfortunate because we were celebrating two birthdays. Don't roll the dice: there are plenty of other restaurants in Seattle that have both great food and great service.

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KM
Portland
4 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

Nice atmosphere, cool restored bldg. We had chicken salad and artichoke as starters to share. Both were tasty and enough for 5. 2 of us had the udon noodle dish which was unique and tasty. 3 had the animal style burger which had two patties. It was hard to eat and lacked flavor. It’s just the burger no sides. Nice “by the glass” wine selection.
Overall nice change of pace from east side restaurants. If it were on my neighborhood I’d give it another go for apps and drinks.

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h
San Francisco
20 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Creative and tasty dishes in a spacious setting. Family style is always pleasant and enjoyable, but it was hard to see any consistent theme to the well-plated and thoughtful dishes.

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TJ
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

It was a good meal. Our server was busy and had a difficult table. There were a lot of kids running around the restaurant which is not in the control of the restaurant.

Food was amazing.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

Almost everything was Super salty. Burger was over cooked.

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OT
1 review
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My husband and I have been wanting to come here for so long. I am glad we did, the service was impeccable the food was worth the wait and the over all experience was delightful. Would highly recommend to anyone looking for a good date night!

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M
Seattle
93 reviews
Dined on May 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Small plates for sharing, unusual in preparation and outstanding in presentation and taste! Very attractive setting for intimate or group seating, well trained and responsive wait staff, located in Old Ballard an excellent setting for getting a great sense of early Seattle with modern stores, restaurants, and bars.

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SS
1 review
Dined on April 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious, great service, looking forward to going back.

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BM
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Every dish we had was excellent and prepared with care. Our waitress was attentive without being obtrusive and reasonably knowledgeable so that she could make excellent recommendations. The noise level I marked as moderate--you have the sense of bustle that is nice when you are eating out, but the noise doesn't overwhelm the conversation at your own table.

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s
Seattle
18 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The dishes are meant to be share plates, which means you get to try several dishes. That was great, because it was hard to decide on what to order. Everything we ate was presented beautifully and delicious. It got a little pricey, so not some place we would go frequently but fun to go with friends once in awhile or maybe an occasion.

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SK
Seattle
3 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

If you are a foodie and enjoy new flavor experiences, you'll love this place. The menu changes which makes return visits dynamic. Highly recommend sharing plates.

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OT
Seattle
5 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 3

Delicious meal. Different tastes that we really enjoyed

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o
Seattle
52 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is our third time here in less than 3 months. We came with a larger party of 5 which is great because you can try and share more dishes. Every item on the menu is a winner. The dishes are prepared with great imagination and all of them have the perfect combination of ingredients, textures and flavors. The space is large and very comfortable. There is not a lot of noise and it feels like you can have a pleasant conversation without overhearing others anywhere you are seated. We all concluded this just might be our favorite restaurant!!!

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AP
Chicago
17 reviews
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Food and drinks are great in this new space. The menu is on the smaller side, but everything we had was top notch. My low marks for service are two fold. After being sat it took quite awhile for anyone to greet us, and when we finally had our drink order taken, it was by someone who wasn’t our sever. It took at least 15-20 minutes to get our cocktails, and after at least 10 minutes someone did stop by to let us know “ the bar is backed up”. When our sever did finally stop by, she asked us for drinks again so clearly there isn’t a lot of communication happening. Our server was great, it just felt like a very disjointed experience with the service in terms of communication.

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OT
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely a fabulous dinner, the food was delicious

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KW
1 review
Dined on April 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful service and fantastic food! Food is served family style so we shared the gnocchi, house salad and halibut. Will definitely be going back to try the rest of the menu.

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A
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very tasty, original, and GREAT service.
Thumbs up!

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AE
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

The food was really good but the service was super slow (it took over 30 minutes to get a drink), it was a busy night but beverage and food service was too slow and inconsistent.

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food and nice atmosphere

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OT
Calgary
2 reviews
Dined on April 18, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

Food was fine, but service was lacking. Our waiter was indifferent and didn't check in on us at all. During dessert, he came by once we were almost done to offer coffee, which by that point we weren't interested in. We weren't asked if we wanted refills on drinks and our water glasses sat empty for most of the meal. Other members of the staff cleared our plates and refilled our waters. We had high hopes for this place, given the positive reviews. For us, it really fell short.

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a
Seattle
23 reviews
Dined on April 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great quality food. Service was spectacular. SRW was such a good deal. Will definitely come back!

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RC
Seattle
2 reviews
Dined on April 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service-I can’t wait to go back. Artichokes, fish and desserts all exceeded our expectations.

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SK
Seattle
8 reviews
Dined on April 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Creative & delicious

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DR
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We loved every minute of our experience at Sawyer! The food was amazing and they were kind enough to work with my dietary restrictions during restaurant week with grace and made it delicious!!

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A
London
4 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food was great and space was very cool! This might be my new favorite in Seattle!

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AF
Seattle
13 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Delicious food. I especially loved the grilled artichokes. Noise level is a bit wearing.

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MH
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and great atmosphere. The food is on the heavy and meaty side so would not recommend to vegetarians. The drinks are great and there is a bar so anyone should try some apps and drinks. The roasted artichoke were delicious!

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K
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a lovely dinner there yesterday! The ambiance is cool yet casual since it’s located in a beautiful remodeled former sawmill. The food was really fresh and the portions very generous. We shared the house salad (huge and loved the goat cheese/chicken combo) pork belly buns (classic flavors, well executed), animal style burger (wagyu beef with good quality bun - had a lightly charred flavor which worked well with that type of beef) and my favorite the oxtail nachos which packed a lot of flavor! For dessert we had the dilly ice cream bar - sooo unexpectedly good since the ice cream is very creamy and dipped in high quality chocolate with cookie dough. Service was excellent - our waitress, Katie, offered great suggestions and was very attentive. Overall, great food, we will definitely be back!

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M
1 review
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

Great food! Came for restaurant week so our service was subpar and they ran out of the things we were hoping to order. Dessert was phenomenal, best dish. Cocktails were yummy. Awesome interior - exposed ceiling, modern, lots of wood, clean. Food was good enough I would go back to let them redeem service!

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OT
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The pork belly sliders were one of the best plates I’ve ever had! I could have had 5 more plates of them. A MUST order!!

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m
Seattle
5 reviews
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Went to Sawyer for the second time, both times during restaurant week. They do a great job and don't skimp on portions at all! Plus you can do the whole restaurant week menu a la carte in case you only want one or two of the courses. The food is spectacular and would return any time! The only downside was that it took at least 10 minutes for dessert to arrive after they cleared our entree plates - but it was so good that we didn't care once it got there.

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b
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Good food, good service, friendly staff. Also great look and feel.
I think wine knowledge is average at best. Our dessert "aperitif" was replaced without asking (because they were out of what we ordered...waiter should know that). He was nice but should have asked us before changing it.

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N
Seattle
17 reviews
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Was here for restaurant week. Can’t wait to revisit next monrh

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s
Miami
26 reviews
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

First time visiting this gem during restaurant week. The food was superb. We had the asparagus salad followed by the halibut. It was all cooked to perfection. The only thing I would comment is I wish there were more local wines on the menu.

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p
Dallas
1 review
Dined on April 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went during Seattle Restaurant Week so 'value' might be a little skewed but the three courses for $35 was amazing. Personal favorite was the dilly bar for dessert - but that's because I have a sweet tooth and will eat anything that contains cookie dough.

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JR
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 4

I was really looking forward to Sawyer but was disappointed overall. The service was really slow and the food was just ok. Perhaps Bc it was restaurant week and they wanted options they could mass produce. They also charged $10 more for halibut when other restaurants participating just include it as a general option.

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Q
Los Angeles
24 reviews
Dined on April 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was top notch !

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M
1 review
Dined on April 8, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

I am confused by all the great reviews. There is simply no way that Sawyer stacks up to what Seattle dining has to offer the food was mediocre, but the staff was friendly, attentive and amazing.

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a
Seattle
15 reviews
Dined on April 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We dined at the Sawyer during Seattle Restaurant Week, so the menu was limited (by design), but the food was great, as was the service. Recipes seem a bit unusual but taste great. Don't miss the Sawyer. You won't be disappointed!

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k
Seattle
6 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Went during Restaurant Week and it was a good deal. Flavors were really interesting and everything was good. The deserts were the best part of the meal. Ambiance is better than the Kickin' Boot before it, but a bit stale. Not unenjoyable, just more potential.

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