Chef Matthew Dillon, owner of the Corson Building and Matthew Dillon's Sitka & Spruce, dishes his top spots for a day (and night) out on the town


Every morning, Dillon hits Georgetown’s All City Coffee, where he pulls up a chair at the long wooden table and chats with fixtures of the community. Great conversation leaves the gang caffeinated and inspired. $; 1205 S. Vale St.; 206/767-7146.


You’ll bond with the person next to you in line as you wait–and wait and wait–for the moist, pork-stuffed Cuban sandwich that brought Paseo cult status. By the time you’ve gathered around the picnic tables, you’ll be old pals. $; closed Sun-Mon; 6226 Seaview Ave. N.W. (206/789-3100) and 4225 Fremont Ave. N. (206/545-7440).


Bar dining is communal by nature. Dillon bellies up to the long one at the back of the International District’s century-old Maneki to enjoy the nonsushi side of Japanese cooking (he likes the salted mackerel) with other solo diners. $$; closed Mon; 304 Sixth Ave. S.; 206/622-2631.


With drippy candles set down the middle of each table, charming mismatched furniture, and shareable portions of unbeatable housemade pasta, Spinasse evokes a country Italian pasteria. “I love how the old-timer atmosphere reminds me not to rush,” says Dillon. $$$; closed Tue; 1531 14th Ave.; 206/251-7673.

Keep Reading: