When you think of Alaska, you probably think of glaciers and whales and all of the amazing photos you’re going to go home with. But don’t forget to stop and smell the fresh cooking, fresh baking, and even the freshly brewed beer.
Of course, you must eat a fresh catch in Juneau. The fish is brought in from docks only blocks away from basically any place you go. Read on to find the greatest food and drinks in Alaska’s capital city.
Juneau’s best eats are some of the oldest in Alaska. One prime example is the historic Gold Room in the Westmark Baranof Hotel, which has been serving fine meals since the 1930s. This is “fine dining” in Juneau — the service is excellent, the food absolutely outstanding… the halibut is supreme, and the crab legs come out on a platter and are sometimes as long as two FEET!
Located in the heart of downtown Juneau, The Rookery Cafe vies for top place in many restaurant reviews. You can find fantastic pastries, great coffee, and excellent salads, wraps, calzones, and pizza. In the bakery department, you can have fresh croissants, danish, cinnamon rolls and scones, as well as a variety of cookies, artisan cupcakes and other delicious desserts made daily.
Speaking of bakeries, everyone always loves Silverbow, the state’s oldest operating bakery. It’s located in the Silverbow building (imagine that!). You can get a great breakfast, lunch, or coffee. They still use their original sourdough starter (it’s more than 100 years old) and were the first traditional bagel maker in Alaska where bagels are boiled and then baked in a revolving tray oven.
Located right on the water in downtown Juneau, the Red Dog Saloon is a top tourist institution, a must-see on a Juneau shore excursion, and definitely worth the experience. This isn’t the place for anything fancy, but it’s fun! There is live music, and the servers wear cabaret clothes. Of course, there is a great variety of beer selections and good eats. In Red Dog’s beginnings, the owners took their mule and went down to the docks to meet the boats. Enjoy the memorabilia in the saloon besides having a tasty meal and brew.
Tracy’s King Crab Shack may remind you of some cities’ food carts — and that’s exactly what it is, a cart selling seafood by Juneau’s docks. Known for its crab legs and excellent crab bisque, the shack is a seafood lover’s funky paradise.
Heritage Coffee Roasting Company has been voted Juneau’s favorite coffee for more than 25 years, and is popular throughout Alaska and has received favorable reviews internationally as well! Heritage Coffee Company has been roasting premium coffees in Juneau, Alaska for 30 years. Throughout the coffee industry, Heritage Coffee Company is recognized as a premiere coffee roaster, offering only the best in specialty coffees. Most likely, any Alaskan restaurant will be serving freshly roasted coffee from Heritage.
Another well respected coffee roaster in Juneau is Conti Coffee. They are known for their small-batch roast and roasting to order. They are proud of their commitment to the environmental efforts that are organized and supported by coffee growers, importers, and roasters around the world. Both Heritage and Conti coffee roasters will ship to your home.
Coffee is great and all, but Alaskans love their beer, and it better taste just right! The Alaskan Brewing Company was the 67th brewing company opened in the United States and the first to open in Juneau since Prohibition. Alaskans had been brewing beer throughout its history. The Larson family took that history and turned it into a business after finding the shipping records from the Douglas Brewing Company dated 1899 through 1907. What a find! These records listed the ingredients for the popular beers it made, along with a newspaper article that explained the brewing process. And brew they did! That beer is still brewed today and is called Alaskan Amber. Some of ABC’S beer use alder-smoked malts and Sitka spruce tips.
And salmon – the super healthy fish that tastes heavenly! Gold Creek Salmon Bake is Alaska’s original salmon bake. This feast is unforgettable, not just the salmon that is grilled to perfection, but the all-you-can-eat adventure. You eat under a translucent dome alongside a creek while you savor the aroma of wild salmon, grilling slowly over fires of fragrant alder wood. The sumptuous spread has something for everyone, and vegetarians, there’s plenty for you to choose also. Come back for seconds, or thirds, while a local musician sets a festive mood.
With these best eats in Juneau, you’re sure to leave satisfied — and with great memories!