A new restaurant on Lake Sammamish intends to bring the fine dining experience a little bit closer to home for Sammamish plateau residents.
Katie’s on the Lake opened its doors on Feb. 15 in the space previously occupied by Karate West at 3310 East Lake Sammamish Parkway SE.
Billed as featuring new American cuisine, the restaurant menu offers prime steaks, seafood and a variety of poultry and pasta dishes.
The opening of Katie’s on the Lake marks the fourth establishment for owner and Sammamish resident Rich Radcliffe. Radcliffe also oversees Uncle Si’s Pizza in Snoqualmie and Sammamish and Samm’s Lakeside Lounge. His newest restaurant, which is named after Radcliffe’s 13-year-old daughter, is located right next door to his other two Sammamish operations.
With Katie’s on the Lake, Radcliffe told the Reporter he wanted to provide for the community an upscale dining option that didn’t require crossing a bridge into Bellevue or Seattle.
“Having lived in Sammamish for 16 years now, the need had been dramatically there,” Radcliffe said. “There’s a lack of quality places to eat, and the experience that you’re going to have over at Katie’s is something you’ll probably have to go over to Seattle to actually get.”
Inside the restaurant’s doors, guests will find floral decor on every table linen of the 62-seat restaurant, with an open kitchen overlooking the one-room dining area.
The menu’s entree items range in price from $20-$40. A 12-ounce prime ribeye served with whipped potato, vegetables and a veal demi-glaze goes for $44. Braised short rib, which Radcliffe mentioned as one of the restaurant’s signature dishes, is served with carrots, roasted parsnip, celery greens, horseradish and veal stock and goes for $32.
The restaurant’s seafood options are locally-sourced from Issaquah’s Gemini Fish Market. For $36, guests can get pan-seared Chilean sea bass, served with vegetables, candied lemon and fresh capers.
The menu is crafted by Chef Brandon Cassidy, who boasts over a decade of professional cooking experience, most recently with Nicolino Ristorante Italiano in Issaquah.
Cassidy described the cuisine at Katie’s on the Lake as built on a foundation of French cooking with an Italian influence. He said his personal philosophy is to source as locally as he can and to bring soul to each dish, referring to a quote from American chef Thomas Keller. He added that he believes Katie’s on the Lake fills plenty of needs for dining options on the Eastside.
“I believe there’s really nowhere you can go, with the exception of a handful of restaurants in downtown [Seattle], where you’re gonna get this caliber of service,” Cassidy said. “However, you’re not paying for the parking and you’re not dealing with a 45-minute to hour-long drive.”
Radcliffe also noted the resource of available parking, though he emphasized that one of the primary elements that sets his restaurant apart is the level of service provided by staff, with an intent of furnishing an intimate and hospitable environment for guests.
“If you go online, the reviews are great. The service level is a standard above what is common out there, and that is purposeful,” Radcliffe said. “We don’t have any new servers. Everybody’s been in the business for at least 10 years, so they know the difference between service and hospitality. We’re after the hospitality crowd.”
Radcliffe added the new restaurant space is available for private events, which can cater for a party of 100, and includes the spaces at Uncle Si’s and Samm’s Lakeside Lounge.
But ultimately, it’s all about the food. Radcliffe believes Katie’s on the Lake boasts some of the best cuisine around and will keep local residents staying on the plateau for a memorable dining experience.
“When people think of fine dining or upscale dining, the same names come up,” Radcliffe said. “But around this part, you don’t really have any go-to places that are named. That’s our goal, to be on that list.”
“It’s fine dining lost on the Eastside and now found again,” Cassidy said of the new restaurant. “That’s the best way I can explain it.”
For more information, call Katie’s on the Lake at 425-392-8286.
This article was updated to include a corrected phone number for Katie’s on the Lake.