From fresh seafood pulled straight from the ocean to caribou steaks and locally grown vegetables, Alaska offers a variety of flavors and cuisines to satisfy even the pickiest of travelers. While you’re enjoying your great Alaskan trip, set aside some time to enjoy a meal at a country pub or knock on mugs with a salt fisherman to get a true taste of the people, cultures, and culinary traditions that make Alaska such a wild and wonderful place.
While every town along your trip will have a popular bar or colorful salon, sometimes it’s best to get off the beaten path and enjoy some flavor of local life. We’ve compiled a list of our top picks for food, beer, cocktails or coffee at every stop along your Alaska cruise.
From halibut in Juneau to elegant dinners in Sitka, these are our Alaskan reporter’s top picks that will make you feel like a local in last year America.
Arctic Roadrunner: This no-frills burger joint is perfect for enjoying a premium burger (or salmon burger) in classic Alaskan style. Outdoor seating is available along the river, and dinner is cash only.
There is an automatic teller machine on site.
The Korean Garden: With an unassuming facade and interior, this is some of the best Korean food in town. Visitors can expect authentic Korean dishes with prompt service and fair prices.
Choose Dolsot Bibimbap, and you won’t be disappointed.
The Rustic Goat: This restaurant offers “comfort food with a modern twist.” You can get a wide range of specialties here, including delicious bison sliders. The food is pricey, but they have a great seafood menu. I go for their excellent selection of craft beers offered on draft.
Try the Double Shovel Appalanche Cider for the perfect mix of tart and sweet.
The Writer’s Block Cafe: If you happen to be in Anchorage on a rainy day, this cafe is the perfect place to spend a few hours enjoying a hot coffee and perusing some bookshelves.
The café also offers a drinks menu, including specialty cocktails, beer, and wine. They also have a menu offering breakfast, comfort foods and delicious paninis.
Alpenglow: Located downtown, Alpenglow offers visitors a cozy retreat and wood-fired pizza. This is the best pizzeria in town, although the hours can be weird.
Check their site before heading in to make sure they are open.
Haines Brewery Company: The local Haines Brewery is an excellent stop to enjoy a local brew. An unassuming establishment, the brewery does not serve food but does offer beautiful and aesthetic country views.
Try Spruce Tip Ale – I guarantee it tastes like Alaskan summer in a glass.
The Rookery: The Rookery is a quick favorite for locals and visitors. This small café is located in downtown Juneau and serves American food with a touch of Alaska.
This cafe serves a great brunch with a delicious Korean chicken sandwich.
The Wild Alaskan: If you find yourself in the suburbs of Juneau, visit Wild Alaskan to pick up food for a picnic or to enjoy on the go.
This food truck might not look like much from the outside, but it has the best French fries and halibut in the area.
Read moreTop 10 things to do in Juneau, Alaska
Garcia’s Galley: If you’re looking to avoid the crowds in downtown Ketchikan, head to Garcia’s Galley for lunch or dinner.
This local restaurant serves authentic Mexican food and some American favorites. Chimi Deluxe pairs perfectly with margarita for an after-picnic treat.
The Potlatch Bar: As the oldest bar in Ketchikan, the Potlatch Bar is no secret, but it has managed to maintain its quaint fisherman’s bar aesthetic even after decades of tourism. That alone makes it worth stopping by to enjoy an adult drink along the docks, but the friendly staff and excellent drinks list add up to a great experience – especially on a rainy day!
Read more: A Local Guide to Where To Visit in Ketchikan, Alaska
Mermaid Grotto Café & Boutique: This café is an eclectic mix of rustic and modern. This no-frills café serves breakfast, lunch, hot drinks, and cocktails (including a great Bloody Mary).
While the inside is lovely, you can swing by on a sunny day to enjoy their expansive outdoor space. It’s the perfect place to work on an Alaskan tan.
The Niche: Alaska is a big fan of food trucks. These colorful wagons dot the landscape of most Alaskan cities, serving their take on popular dishes and the freedom to eat your food on the go as you race to catch a whale watching boat. Porthole is located in a small boat port parking lot, on Fourth Avenue.
It offers breakfast and lunch options and is a great place for a quick bite before heading out on your day.
I recommend the Captain (sausage dumplings on a brioche bun), but you can’t go wrong with anything on the menu.
Ludvig’s Bistro: Ludvig’s offers a variety of Mediterranean fare mixed with local seafood specials. It offers a wine bar, kitchen and a beautiful outdoor patio in the center of Sitka.
While the food is on the more expensive side of Alaskan fare, the taste and quality are well worth it. If you’re looking to try some local seafood during your trip to Alaska, book Ludvig’s for your day in Sitka.
Rising Tide Bakery: If you’re in Sikta early in the morning, stop by Rising Tide Bakery for the best cakes in town (and possibly all of Alaska). Set the alarm early, as it will often sell out before noon.
Read moreTop 10 things to do in Sitka, Alaska
Skagway Brewing Company: Skagway Brewery is an excellent example of sustainable living in remote Alaska. With their own on-site production of fresh greens, fruits and herbs, their food is guaranteed to be the freshest in the region.
As a brewery, they also serve a large selection of local and craft beers, as well as hearty Beer Chili that can warm you up on even the coldest days.
The Station Bar & Grill: Skagway doesn’t offer many options in terms of food, and downtown restaurants can get busy pretty quickly when a cruise ship is in port.
To avoid crowds and escape the tourist prices, head to The Station Bar & Grill. However, within walking distance of the sidewalks, this grill has been removed enough from the main streets not to get crowded but offers a great menu of burgers, home cooking and beer.
Read moreTop 10 things to do in Skagway, Alaska
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