Copper River Salmon & Pinot Noir – A Rite of Spring!

Ray’s offers rotating 3-course Copper River Salmon dinner specials and half-price bottles of Pinot Noir in June!


This year Ray’s is proud to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the first Copper River King Salmon to be flown fresh from Alaska to Seattle.  Ray’s was one of only four Seattle restaurants to serve Copper River Kings from that first shipment in 1983 and we’re excited to celebrate that milestone as part of our 40th birthday festivities (June 23 is our birthday).

The first trial shipment of the Copper River Kings was in 1983, arriving via a small group of Cordova fishermen led by Tom Johnson and orchestrated by Seattle seafood guru Jon Rowley, to determine if the fish could establish a distinct market identity.  Ray’s Boathouse, along with McCormick’s Fish House, Triples and Rosellini’s Other Place, were the first four restaurants to participate and they all earned acclaim that was immediate, unanimous and enthusiastic.

“At that time most fish was going into cans, some was frozen, but none was coming down fresh,” Rowley explained. “The handling was atrocious, so I worked with a few fishermen and explained that I could get them a better price for their fish.  I helped them get the handling right and brought down a trial shipment of 400 lbs, delivered fresh right to their restaurant!”

Also in the 1980’s, Ray’s transformed the minds of Northwest diners by recommending red wine pairings with fish – again with an assist from Rowley! – and we’re proud to continue the celebration of Copper River Salmon paired with Pinot Noir. Ray’s will offer a series of three special dinners in the Boathouse Dining Room on Thursday nights in June (June 6, 13, 20), pairing the mighty Copper River Kings with Pinot Noir, the perfect complement to this rich, decadent fish.

Chef Wayne Johnson and Executive Sous Chef Joe Ritchie have prepared three distinct and delicious menus – rotating each week – featuring Copper River Salmon that pair perfectly with Pinot Noir.  Ray’s Wine Director Richard Kelsey will be available to help guests select the perfect bottle of Pinot Noir for their tastes.  These 3-course dinners are specially priced at $40 (in honor of our 40th birthday!) and half-price bottles of Pinot Noir are available exclusively when you purchase the Copper River Salmon 3-course dinner special.

“We are excited to bring these special dinners to our guests and celebrate this important rite of spring,” said Maureen “Mo” Shaw, Ray’s General Manager.  “This is renowned as the world’s best salmon, and pairing it with Pinot Noir is one of the best regional food and wine pairings in the world.”

Reservations are available now for the trio of Copper River Salmon-Pinot Noir dinners in our Boathouse Dining Room through Open Table or by calling our reservation desk (206.789.3770).

June 6 Menu

1)       Grilled Copper River Sockeye with Smoked Morels, Grilled Spring Garlic, Roasted Garlic Puree

2)       Crispy Skinned Copper River King with Grilled Asparagus, Sage, Pinot Noir-Toasted Anise Butter Sauce

3)       Strawberry Shortcake with balsamic, almonds, mascarpone ice cream

June 13 Menu

1)       Slow Roasted Copper River Sockeye Salmon with Bay-Braised Artichokes, Tarragon Aioli, Spring Greens

2)       Grilled Copper River King with Fava Beans, Roasted Golden Beets, House Smoked Bacon

3)       Blueberry Tart with goat cheese, lemon thyme, almonds

June 20 Menu

1)       Olive Oil Poached Sockeye with Preserved Lemon, Olives,  Thyme-Juniper Tomato Sauce

2)       Crispy skinned Copper River King with Mushroom Duxelles, Braised Fennel, Pinot Noir-Mustard Sauce.

3)       Peaches n cream with honey, buttermilk ice cream, pecans


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