We’ve spent a week exploring Frasier in honor of the show’s 25th anniversary, which is coming up on September 16. But unlike some other iconic pieces of Seattle media—say, Sleepless in Seattle—Frasier was rarely filmed on-location. The one episode that did come to Seattle got some landmarks like the Space Needle and the Monorail in, but they were hardly regular staples of the show.
We’ve taken it upon ourselves to come up with some real-life analogues for someone looking for a Frasier experience in the Emerald City. Leave your own suggestions in the comments.
Where is the real-life Elliott Bay Towers?
As we covered earlier this week, Frasier’s condo in Elliott Bay Towers could not possibly exist in Seattle, even if 1990s construction trends continued today. But Seattle still has classically posh condo buildings that would be fit for a Crane—and while they might not have the exact Kerry Park view, they would all at least have some million-dollar landscape out the window.
The Escala, while built in 2009, eschews modern trends toward smaller and more efficient spaces. This is a luxury building, a 30-story sequel to the fictional Elliott Bay Towers—and while Dr. Crane might find the place’s claim to fame as Christian Grey from 50 Shades of Grey’s fictional residence unsettling (can you imagine?), it’s easy to imagine his neighbors as members of the Downtown Residence Alliance, which has included many members of Seattle’s wealthy elite and has fought to prevent other residential high-rises from being built around it.
First Hill Plaza is another clear option: the luxury condo building was built in 1982, and has floor plans and finishes of a more old-school, almost cartoonish poshness that Frasier might find familiar. The ultra-formal condos, settled in curved corners of the building, are practically designed around a Steinway in the living room. Plus, one can absolutely imagine Martin skinny-dipping in the view, rooftop hot tub. You can check out an old listing here.
The Residences at the Four Seasons mimic hotel life, but on a more permanent basis: You can order room and spa service, for example. And because it’s the Four Seasons, these condo units are ridiculously upscale, with up-close views of Elliott Bay. One of these units has been on the market for several months now for a cool $12 million, and includes a wine cellar and more than 5,000 square feet of space—giant for a condo.
Where’s the real Cafe Nervosa?
As rumor has it, Cafe Nervosa was based on the real-life Elliott Bay Cafe inside Elliott Bay Book Company, back when it was located in the historic, 1890-built Globe Building. This tracks, at least somewhat: While it was never as formal as Cafe Nervosa, it has that old-Seattle vibe (and references to a square outside could easily be Occidental Square around the corner).
Elliott Bay moved to Capitol Hill in 2010, and the Elliott Bay Cafe has been replaced by Little Oddfellows, a small satellite to Oddfellows Cafe next door. Oddfellows itself is actually not a bad choice here: It has the same historic-building vibe, plus a full coffee menu and table service, all points for Nervosa.
But while Oddfellows can certainly cater to a person with expensive taste, if we’re talking Capitol Hill, Frasier might feel a little more at home heading over to Pettirosso a couple of blocks away—also featuring both a full coffee menu and table service, plus that old-brick-building vibe.
Although, let’s be real: It’s also easy to picture Frasier inside a Starbucks, as long as it’s the right one. Our choices for Dr. Crane are either the Madison Park Starbucks—which looks not-unlike Cafe Nervosa and sometimes gets a visit from Howard Schultz himself—or the Starbucks Reserve Roastery.
But it’s strongly implied that the coffee shop is located in Pioneer Square, especially given the on-location shots in the 100th episode. And given the references to the exterior, again, it’s possible the coffee shop bordered Occidental—but currently, the only coffee shop bordering Occidental is Cherry Street Public House. It’s in a newer building, so it doesn’t have the same old-Seattle brick surroundings, but a more fully-featured branch of a friendly local chain could be Frasier’s speed.
There’s also the industrial vibe of Zeitgeist Coffee, which has operated in Pioneer Square since the late 1990s and still has that exposed-brick look that inspired the interior, although it’s a much more open space.
Finally, given Frasier’s (impossible) views from Queen Anne, we thought he might enjoy the flagship Cafe Ladro. While the vibe’s not exactly the same, the brothers Crane could feel at home among the stained glass and terrazzo tables.
What radio station would host the Dr. Frasier Crane Show?
While this seems like something that would air on a local NPR affiliate like KUOW—can you imagine Frasier or even Niles on Says You?!—it’s implied that KACL is a commercial radio station. The clear choice here is KIRO Radio.
While KIRO Radio has garnered a more conservative ethos, especially in recent years, it’s also brought up iconic local talk radio personalities like Dave Ross and Ciscoe Morris. If the Dr. Frasier Crane Show appeared on any local commercial station, he’d seem right at home next to Seattle’s Kitchen (with local restauranteurs Tom Douglas and the exceedingly bougie French chef Thierry Rautureau) and syndicated 60 Minutes episodes.
Side note: The radio station that actually has the call sign KACL is Cool 98.7, a classic-hits station in Bismarck, North Dakota.
Where can you get tossed salad and scrambled eggs in Seattle?
For when you hear the blues a-callin’, you could head to Canlis for perhaps Seattle’s most famous tossed salad—but while the fine dining destination could probably whip you up the fanciest scrambled eggs of your life, they’re not actually on the menu. Frasier-worthy establishments where you could get both at the same time without going off-book include the aforementioned Pettirosso and Oddfellows, possibly Pioneer Square’s the London Plane (the daily menu changes), West Seattle staple Endolyne Joe’s, French joint Marmite, or upscale diner Skillet.
While it’s fun to take the theme song literally, it’s more about batty callers to Frasier’s show. Frasier, a professional psychiatrist and radio host, apparently doesn’t know what to do with them.