On the eastern shore of Lake Washington, at the site of what was once a shipyard, an independent, boutique hotel tempts visitors and locals alike. Every half hour, dockside carillon bells ring out their welcome to gulls and boaters alike. Out of town visitors come for a room with a view and all the luxurious hotel amenities, but many Seattle-area residents flock to The Woodmark for food, spa services, and weddings.
Two waterfront restaurants, Carillon Kitchen and Beach Café offer diners fresh, organic, local foods with a backdrop of Lake Washington and, in the distance, the Olympic Mountains. Executive Chef Brian Doherty, formerly of the Fairmont Olympic and The Four Seasons Seattle, oversees both locations. For twelve years, Doherty’s responsibilities included catering events in the Spanish Ballroom, pretty much the gold standard for private events.
Carillon Kitchen is a chef-driven, community-oriented restaurant offering mouth-watering healthy options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. “Our goal is to make sure everything is fresh and that we’re producing the highest quality product that we can,” says Doherty. “We partnered with Macrina and Olympia Provisions and came up with a beautiful menu.” Other local highlights include Fonté coffee, Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, and Ellenos Yogurt. When Covid-19 shut down other dining options at the hotel, Carillon Kitchen’s grab-and-go concept soared. Locals come in for readily available snacks and meals or order ahead for pickup. Hotel guests enjoy high-quality foods they can eat in their room or take to the beach. Carillon Kitchen is currently open daily for limited dining and takeout from 7:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M.
Beach Café is a casual dining waterfront restaurant with an innovative, seasonally influenced menu featuring daily seafood specials and signature dishes. “It’s a seafood-driven menu focusing on fresh, local ingredients in a beautiful setting,” says Doherty. The lakeside patio fills up fast in good weather, but many interior tables also offer water views. While specials usually feature fresh catch straight from the docks, signature dishes like the Smoked Akaushi New York Strip or Roasted Rack of Lamb will tempt meat lovers. Currently, the restaurant is open Wednesday to Saturday from 5 P.M. to 9 P.M. Doherty aims to be fully open by the end of the year.
The Woodmark is also one of the top destinations in the state for weddings. Doherty, who has earned the chops to produce high-quality meals for large events, oversees the catering department. “The Banquet Department has taken off,” says Doherty. “We’re booked up almost to the end of the year of Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Five to six weddings a weekend. It’s a beautiful venue.”
Just fifteen minutes from downtown Seattle, Beach Café and Carillon Kitchen are waterfront dining options for anyone who loves excellent food in an idyllic PNW setting. Whether you’re interested in grabbing a casual lunch to eat by the beach or looking to linger over an elegant meal with a sunset view, head to Carillon Point in Kirkland and check out The Woodmark.