A delightful place to spend time is Backdoor Café (907/747-8856, Mon.–Fri. 6:30 a.m.–5 p.m., Sat. 6:30 a.m.–2 p.m., closed Sun., $4–7), an espresso shop behind Old Harbor Books on Lincoln Street. Backdoor is the literary and greenie hangout, and also serves daily lunch specials and pastries. This is the definitive Sitka  meeting place.
Tucked downstairs in the Raven Radio building at the base of the bridge, Larkspur Café (2 Lincoln St., 907/966-2326, www.larkspurcafe.blogspot.com , Sun. 10 a.m.–3 p.m., Wed.–Sat. 11 a.m.–10 p.m., $8–15) has a menu that changes often, with fresh seafood (of course), local berries and produce in season, wonderful soups and chowders, paninis, salads, espresso, beer, wine, and occasional live music.
Victoria’s (118 Lincoln St., 907/747-9301, daily 6 a.m.–9 p.m., $10–22), in the Sitka Hotel, is a decent breakfast and lunch spot but also serves a full dinner menu. Pop open your laptop for free Wi-Fi. A few doors up the street is a pharmacy that houses Harry’s Soda Shop (907/747-8006, www.whitesalaska.com ) for malts, shakes, banana splits, and homemade ice cream.
Get burgers, milk shakes, and other fast food—plus hearty breakfasts—at Lane 7 Snack Bar (236 Katlian St., 907/747-6310, www.lane7.com , Mon.–Sat.). Subway probably has the cheapest meal deal in town; it’s behind the Westmark on Seward Street. Of course, there’s always the McDonald’s a mile out on Halibut Point Road for industrial-strength junk food. With the harbor-and-mountains view, this McD’s certainly has one of the most impressive vistas in the entire corporate chain.
While waiting for your flight, stop by the airport’s Nugget Restaurant (907/966-2480) for a slice of their locally famous pies.
Pizza Express (236 Lincoln St., 907/966-2428) serves authentic Mexican food (around $11) and decent pizzas. They’re directly across from the Russian Orthodox church.
If you like Japanese food in an unpretentious setting, Little Tokyo (315 Lincoln St., 907/747-5699, Mon.–Sat.) is one of the best deals in town. In addition to fresh sushi, they offer a filling bento box dinner (miso soup, pot stickers, sushi, salad, and teriyaki chicken) for just $11.
Van Winkle & Sons (205 Harbor Dr., 907/747-7652, lunch Mon.–Fri., dinner nightly, dinner entrées $15–27), near the bridge, has seafood, pasta, and prime rib but is best known for halibut fish-and-chips. This is the real thing, Alaskan style. The upstairs setting is quiet and romantic.
On the water three miles out of town, Channel Club (2906 Halibut Point Rd., 907/747-7440, www.sitkachannelclub.com , Sun.–Thurs. 5–9 p.m., Fri.–Sat. 5–10 p.m. summer, Tues.–Sat. 5–9 p.m. winter, entrées $24–32) serves seafood, steaks, prime rib (their signature dish), a big salad bar (included with most meals), and great appetizers. Call for a free shuttle from town.
Sitka ’s culinary gem, Ludvig’s Bistro (256 Katlian St., 907/966-3663, www.ludvigsbistro.com , daily 4–10 p.m. May–Sept. only) ranks among the top cafés in Alaska. It’s small, stylish, and noisy, with a creative Mediterranean-meets-Alaska menu. You’ll find Caesar salads, daily chowders, fresh seafood specials, and pasta. Ludvig’s is two blocks down Katlian, which is too far for most of the cruise ship folks to walk. Reservations are recommended, but singles will usually find space at the wine bar. Entrées run $20–33, or you can choose a selection of small tapas dishes for $17 each. The restaurant also has a seasonal soup cart located near the base of the bridge weekdays 11 a.m.–2 p.m. serving clam chowder and baguette sandwiches for $8–11.
Sea Mart (907/747-6266, www.seamart.com ), two miles from town along Halibut Point Road, has a salad bar, a deli, a bakery, a food court, and Sitka’s most complete selection of groceries. Closer to town is Lakeside Grocery (705 Halibut Point Rd., 907/747-3317).
The Sitka Farmers Market (www.sitkalocalfoodsnetwork.org ) takes place at the ANB Hall (235 Katlian St.) every other Saturday 10 a.m.–2 p.m. in the summer, with local produce, crafts, artworks, music, and food, including grilled fish.