House of Bread – $4.75 for a cup, $6.25 for a bowl, $8.25 for bread bowl
House of Bread’s delicious clam chowder will have you saying, “Mmm, mmm, good.” This clam chowder comes with your choice of any of their fresh homemade bread as well. The soup is very creamy with a good ratio of clams to potatoes. The flavor of the clams isn’t overwhelming. The clam chowder is also expertly seasoned with just the right amount of pepper and isn’t too hot or cold. It’s cheap and one gets a lot of tasty chowder and two full slices of bread for the low price. House of Bread’s chowder wins on price for portion and flavor.
Gwennie’s Old Alaska Restaurant – $6 for a cup, $8.50
Gwennies’ clam chowder is served very hot and definitely needs some time to cool down before it can be eaten. The chowder has carrots, celery and onions. It isn’t super creamy, but it is quite thick. The clam chowder has been seasoned with thyme, giving it a bite in the aftertaste that isn’t particularly enjoyable. There are many more potatoes than clams in this soup, and it seems more like potato soup than clam chowder. There definitely needs to be more clams in this chowder to make it a competitor with the others. The size of the cup is smaller than that of the House of Bread’s, which is kind of a shame considering it costs more. Ultimately Gwennies’ clam chowder tastes more like a cheap can of Progresso clam chowder than an authentic Alaskan restaurant’s homemade chowder.
Nordstrom Cafe – $3.95 for a cup, $4.95 for a bowl
Nordstrom’s is known for many things, but clam chowder doesn’t top most of its patrons’ shopping lists. But every Friday, tucked away on the second floor of the store, the Nordstrom Café offers just that. The clam chowder is definitely a show stopper on the menu too. The chowder is smooth in texture with perfectly cooked soft potatoes. This chowder is on the milder side when it comes to the amount of clams, but it is very well seasoned. All in all, what sets this chowder apart from the other restaurants was the crostini that comes with it. When dipped into the chowder, the crostini creates an explosion of flavor.