The Remarkable CX Pivot of Canlis Restaurant

It’s been a rough year for organizations, large and small. During the past few months we’ve watched many companies struggle, and others rise to the challenge. Canlis restaurant in Seattle exemplifies the latter. A Seattle institution since 1950, every morsel of their reputation is well deserved (and my love for Canlis is no secret).

But what happens when a global pandemic shuts down your award-winning dining room? 

Mark and Brian Canlis did what they do best: they cooked up a response. Several responses, actually, starting with drive-through hamburgers, a bagel shed, family meal home delivery, live bingo night, CSA boxes, a drive-in movie theater, and a beach-themed Crab Shack.

Starting this week, their efforts culminate with the Canlis Community College, an online catalog of food- and non-food-related courses, intramurals, and field trips. It’s another innovative move by a team of customer experience masters who simply refuse to give up.

Mark and Brian’s creative efforts have kept their staff employed, and a weary Seattle fed, entertained, and inspired. The Canlis brothers epitomize what happens when you meet a challenge head on. As they mention in the video, they’re focused on what they can do, not what they can’t do. Fortunately, they can do a lot.

And that’s a lesson for all of us.