Seattle Day Trip: Bellevue
Just one floating bridge east of Seattle, Bellevue is where the techie entrepreneurs buy their fancy homes. Upscale restaurants, high-end shopping malls, and an impressive range of ethnic eateries make it a worthwhile destination.

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Pan-Asian Market Supreme

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One of my favorite Eastside places to shop is the pan-Asian market Uwajimaya, conveniently located near downtown Bellevue.

First stop is always the produce section where the veggies and fruits are high quality, reasonably priced, and artistically arranged. Sources are mostly local. You will find the usual plus Asian varieties. The fish counter is outstanding, offering a wide range of very fresh fish. Live Dungeness crabs and lobsters swim in tanks. Of course, there is a large case of fresh sushi.

The Asian sauce aisle is a must.These sauces will add zap to any meal. The liquor section stocks a wide array of sake, many in beautiful bottles, and Asian beers. Over 20 kinds of rice are stacked in large bags. A well-stocked gift department includes lovely Japanese bowls and platters, teapots, trays, cookware, art supplies, toys, and more.

The hot food counter is worth a trip by itself. About 20 hot dishes such as Beef Chow Fun, General Tso's Chicken, and Sweet and Sour Pork are set out daily. A soup bar offers several choices such as Hot and Sour and Five Star Mushroom. A pleasant dining area adjoins. The take-out cooked meats (teriyaki chicken, roast duck, ribs) have provided us many a dinner.

The staff are mostly (but not all) Asian, friendly, and helpful, and the store is exceptionally clean and bright.

Uwajimaya has been in business since 1928. The flagship store is in Seattle's International District, with branches in Renton, WA, and Beaverton, OR, as well.

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