At one point in the early 19th century, before either San Francisco or Seattle had emerged as ports of call, Sitka was the most cosmopolitan place on the West Coast of the Americas. Never mind that it was merely a scraggly collection of log shelters lining muddy streets, it was known as "The Paris of the Pacific." People from Hawaii, New England, Britain, and Mother Russia tread strode its boardwalks, mingled with its Natives, and drank downed its vodka. 

That tradition of cosmopolitanism in miniature continues at Ludvig's Bistro, easily the best top restaurant in Sitka. It's a tiny, lively, colorful place, done up in rustic Mediterranean colors. The kitchen puts French, Moroccan, Spanish, and Italian twists on Alaskan seafood and game. Specials might include an elk steak, rubbed in rosemary, paprika and salt, then grilled and finished with sautéed wild mushrooms in a blue cheese butter or Alaskan Paella, loaded with local smoked salmon, rockfish, scallops, prawns, grilled chicken, and cured chorizo.