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“Zen Vibe, Great View, Superb NW Cuisine”

Keenan's at the Pier
Ranked #14 of 475 Restaurants in Bellingham
Certificate of Excellence
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
Reviewed 18 August 2015

Don't let the name Keenan's (which sounds like it could be an Irish pub but is really the namesake of the newish owner) fool you: this place offers fresh New American/Pacific Northwest fare in a spa setting (the Crysalis Hotel) overlooking picturesque Bellingham Bay and the San Juan Islands. Enjoy a craft mixed drink with homemade shrub and bitters, a reasonably priced glass (or bottle!) of champagne or simply a domestic beer from the tap as you sit either inside the sunny restaurance or outside on the patio as you gaze at the ships coming and going.

It doesn't matter the season you come, there will always be fresh, local options on the menu. I've been to this restaurant over a dozen times and the only time I was disappointed was when the chef tried his hand at an old-school '30-second cake" (think: cake mix microwaved in a coffee cup). Every other time we've enjoyed fresh food such as salads that are made to order with just the right herb combinations, flavor profiles and homemade dressings tossed on them. Or delicious brunch fare that's a cut above; this last time was a very savory but light eggs benedict that had toasted pecans on top and somehow tasted like Thanksgiving on the plate without being weird. Or then there's the hamburger that the chef calls "just a regular burger" but with it's selection of kobe beef, chicken breast or quinoa yam patty is anything but ordinary. My personal favorite though is the steamed clams in white wine served with toasted sourdough bread and mixed greens on the side.

Whenever we go, we see ladies lunching, couples from the hotel, business guys enjoying a beer after a round of golf or just local people like us enjoying a mini-spa escape. Kids are warmly welcomed and there is plenty of indoor and patio seating, but remember where you are, one of the nicest spas in town with top views of the bay at a chef-in-residence 5-star restaurant and the $$ price won't surprise or annoy you. Enjoy!

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Thank Kelli B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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163 - 167 of 265 reviews

Reviewed 18 August 2015

Food was extraordinary including the unusual touch of toasted pine nuts on a great Caesar salad. My scallops were divine. Service was above and beyond any I have ever received in the US. If you live in Bellingham or close by, please eat there every week to assure the restaurant's success.

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Thank Jean B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 August 2015

My husband spent 8 years, for his undergrad & masters in Bellingham in the 1980's. Yes, it has changed, a lot, And this restaurant was for the better.

It was a fabulous day, and even at 2:30pm, the restaurant was full. We had reubens, huge, and great pinot gris, inexpensive. A lot of outdoor dining space, which is surprising for Bellingham, and its weather.

The service was great, and our waiter, very amusing!

The view is interesting, if knowledgeable about Bellingham. A fabulous view of where the Uniflite boat company was, which was a sad day in the boat world.

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Thank Lynda L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 August 2015

I hate reviewing this place because I love going there so much, I don't want it to be too crowded for me to go in!!! That aside... it's just one of the best kept secrets in Bellingham. Their seafood chowder is made to order... the clams are succulent, the broth is exceptional, the parmesan cheese crispy toast thing on the side is stupidly good. The happy hour is fantastic, especially if you can sit outside. Insider tip: You don't have to sit in the little bar in the restaurant. In the summer, you have the big lobby room next door and the huge patio outside of that. The view is stunning. The trains going by are one of my favorite sounds in the world. And you get to watch kids jumping off the pier and having a blast. Great deals on drinks and food in the bar. One thing... which is why I give it a 4, not a 5: Whenever I eat in the actual restaurant and order a meal, something is wrong with it. The fish isn't cooked all the way or whatever. For some reason, this NEVER happens when I'm in the bar. The fish tacos are outstanding. So... go figure. I'm probably going again tomorrow. It's just too nice not to go there on these hot sunny summery days. You should go too... but don't take my table! xo

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Thank AnitaPeron
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2015

With the change in management two years ago this place is now the happening location! I have been going here for over 12 years and always enjoyed the setting and food. Breakfast is also a great option. The wait staff is always friendly and attentive with Sam the manager doing an awesome job as always! Cant beat the view and sunsets from this place! After dinner walk along the pier and connecting pathways is an awesome experience not to be missed. The only downside was the unclean and non working bathroom toilet!

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Thank Explorer1904
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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