Recent Restaurant RIPs
• ALKI CRAB AND FISH CO. in West Seattle: The little linoleum-and-picnic-table place at the dock for the West Seattle water taxi lost the Seattle Parks concession for the space; fans can find the same menu and some of the staff at the owners' Admiral Pub, according to West Seattle Blog. Moving in: another Marination Station (Marination Marina!), which will make taking the water taxi this summer for no particular reason even more magical.
• GRUBWICH on Capitol Hill: Some hated the name, but many liked the sandwiches (which were "the size of a well-fed schnauzer," according to Cienna Madrid). Despite this—and despite free Tetris—Grubwich lasted only six months in the former Pita Pit space. No word from the owner on why.
• TRATTORIA CIOPPINO in Green Lake: Despite (suspiciously?) high ratings on Yelp and Urbanspoon, TC shut down after just nine months; on our visit in September, the food was uneven at best and a bird died outside the window (not their fault, but it didn't help). My Green Lake reports a branch of Mio Sushi will take over the space.
• COPPER CART in Belltown: The club where a doorman was shot in the hand in 2009 closed down and reopened forthwith as Empire Lounge, apparently under the same ownership. You may join them for "Sex Appeal Saturdays," with no cover charge for "ladies."
• SOLOM in Columbia City: The owner of this little Ethiopian/Eritrean restaurant and grocery—known to her customers as "Mom"—is facing federal charges for buying stolen goods and paying cash for food stamps, according to Seattlepi.com. [Eds. note: Solom has reportedly reopened.]
• THE COUNTER in Ballard: The international burger chain with more than 312,120 build-your-own-burger combinations ended up marooned in a yet-to-be-developed area near the Ballard Bridge and lasted only a couple years.
• AMORE INFUSED downtown: AI had a "heinous" kitchen fire in January, and their Facebook page says they're involved in legal action against their landlords, alleging that "Archstone Apartments has blocked access, tampered with staff and property, or otherwise prevent [sic] us from moving forward."
• DAMIANA'S BLUE TRUCK SPECIAL mobile: After a winter hiatus, Damiana Merryweather is retiring from the road except for catering and special events, according to Nosh Pit. A December 11 tweet offers some insight: "Sometimes, being a one-woman operation isn't all it is cracked up to be. I would trade a bit of my badassness for some help."
• SPLASH LOUNGE in Belltown: This party spot lasted approximately five months—before that, it was the also short-lived V-Bar, and before that, the great Saito's Sushi (sigh). Meanwhile, according to the Wall Street Journal, Saito is in New Delhi as the executive chef at the new branch of New York's Megu.
• COOL WHIRLED in Fremont: Despite a poster with happy rainbows of fruit suspended over ladies jumping and a virtually infinite toppings bar, this family-owned fro-yo shop lasted less than six months. The space is now Naos Lounge, a juice/smoothie/wheatgrass bar.
• ZESTO'S in Ballard: After 63 years; now the third branch of RoRo BBQ. • OTOTO SUSHI on Queen Anne: After 10 years and failed negotiations to decrease the rent; the space remains vacant. • POLPETTA on Queen Anne: Same landlord as Ototo, same story, also remains vacant. • AVALON in West Seattle: Per the West Seattle Herald, low foot traffic combined with untenably high rent did them in after exactly one year and one month. • TENOCH MEXICAN GRILL on Queen Anne: Now Five Hooks Fish Grill; the Tenoch in the ID remains open. • DETENTION in the U-District: School's out forever at the Po Dog spin-off on the Ave, which apparently closed in December and nobody noticed. • KABAB HOUSE in Greenwood: New location in Kirkland remains open. • UPTOWN ESPRESSO on Seventh Avenue downtown: Eight other Uptowns remain open. • LOUNJIN in the U-District: Has already become Tea Republik. • QUIZNOS in the U-District.
This article has been updated since its original publication.